Sex can have a direct positive influence on the brain. But it’s not as simple as just ‘having sex.’ In fact it’s a little more complicated than that. To feel the real benefits of being the best in bed, you may need to learn a thing or two in the boudoir.
But first, let’s talk about the other benefits of having positive sex. We spoke to Kate Moyle, Sexual & Relationship Psychotherapist who features on the BBC’s Sex On The Couch and she kindly shared the following:
“When it comes to good sex, like most things in life the more we do something that we enjoy, then the more we want to do it, it is positively reinforcing; but when we aren’t having a good time it can really put us off. It’s not just the act of sex but the why; Cindy Meston and David Buss in their 2007 paper Why Humans Have Sex, identified 237 reasons that people were having sex. Some reported stress relief which is not just the psychological impact of letting go and experiencing pleasure, but studies have found that Oxytocin, ‘the cuddle hormone’ released in sex and orgasm, counteracts the effect of cortisol, ‘the stress hormone’.”
Boost Your Bedroom Antics
There are many things you can learn in order to give a boost to your bedroom antics, but we’ve hand picked one method that has been scientifically proven to have direct brain and body boosting effects. Oh, and it’s not going to break any bones or strain your back along the way, so if you’re into that, stop reading now.
It’s not quite kama sutra, (although it may also be worth exploring this avenue). It’s not meditation either. What it is, is a mixture of science, brain chemicals and fun.
So if you learn one thing this century about sex, then this should be it. Master it and you’ll receive some exceptional brain gains.
It’s All About Nailing Your Breathing
“People who are into breath play say it can heighten sexual arousal and make orgasms more intense” says Healthline.com.
Nice, but what’s the science behind it all? Becoming conscious of your breathing can open your mind and body to new sensations, thoughts and reactions. In Rowe’s 2018 work, they state that “breathing deeply can increase alpha waves and calm the mind, which is absolutely critical for effective brain functioning.” The Transformative Power of Deep, Slow Breathing by Peter Deadman explores the awesomeness of breathing:
“Slow, deep, lower abdominal breathing… is a powerful tool for healing and transformation. A wide range of emotional and physical problems can be helped by slow breathing… For all of us, the growing understanding of the physiology behind deep breathing offers a wonderful insight into the interplay of yin and yang in every aspect of our lives.”
Brain And Body Benefits
Breathing together during intercourse is the perfect way to reap some super brain and body benefits. Deep breathing can release feel-good dopamine and endorphins which ultimately give you a happiness boost and can soothe the mind. By focusing on your breathing, you don’t lose focus throughout the experience, as it stops your mind from wandering to thoughts of work, the washing, which restaurant you’ll dine at tomorrow night…
In 2018, Trinity College Dublin discovered that breathing exercises can sharpen your mind, thanks to a “neurophysiological link between breathing and attention.”
And what better time to practice than during intercourse. The study highlights the varied cognitive benefits such as:
- Increased ability to focus.
- Decreased mind wandering.
- Improved arousal levels.
- More positive emotions.
- Decreased emotional reactivity.
“The research shows for the first time that breathing… directly affects the levels of a natural chemical messenger in the brain called noradrenaline.” Noradrenaline is released when you’re exercising, facing a challenge, emotionally stimulated, focused and curious. It can encourage the brain to develop new connections and is described as a “brain fertiliser” by neuroscientists, ultimately, improving the brain’s chemistry “in a way that can enhance our attention and improve our brain health.”
Lead author of the study, Michael Melnychuk, explained: “There is a sweet spot of noradrenaline in which our emotions, thinking and memory are much clearer.”
Keen to try out this breathing technique? Don’t blame you. Best Health Mag describes how to do this whole controlled breathing and partner synchronisation thing properly:
- Breathe in deeply together. This involves a bit of eye contact and concentration.
- Exhale together. Try to keep in sync and maintain the inhale-exhale rhythm.
- Do this numerous times. Until the breathing rhythm starts to come naturally.
- Now it’s time for breath exchange, where you both do the opposite breathing.
- So whilst you inhale, they exhale.
- And whilst you exhale, they inhale.
- They recommend doing this for at least 10 minutes… If possible.
And that’s it. Pretty effortless once you know how. However, for the first handful of times, it will take a conscious effort to firstly remember to do it and secondly to master it. But once you do, the science-backed benefits for your body and your brain will be vast. Not to mention the outer body connection you’ll create with the person with whom you’re experiencing it with.
It’s time to share what you’ve learnt and have fun with it too. Your brain will thank you for it.
Looking for more tips? Rebecca Adkin, author, TV expert and all round sexpert shares a few intimate tips with us:
“Spontaneity creates the excitement and thrills that sometimes are not at the forefront with planned sex. The element of surprise is stimulating for the brain and body! Don’t miss the short windows of opportunity when they arise if you’re in the mood to ravish your partner. It will keep the passion alive, leaving you both with an enormous sense of well being.
Without sex, the stresses of everyday life’s work and family etc… can build up and create tension, often this can be released by a quickie! People I work with report how their desire increases and sex drives boost when they have sex instead of getting overloaded with stress and arguing. The release this gives them leaves them with a clear head to face problems and situations at work or home with ease.
An orgasm releases the chemicals into your brain that act as a pain reliever for headaches so that age old excuse for avoiding sex, is not valid!”
Brought to you by Peak, makers of the Peak – Brain Training app. Start brain training today: