Marijuana vs. Viagra for Sexual Arousal, Libido, and ED Treatment

Marijuana vs. Viagra for Sexual Arousal, Libido, and ED Treatment

Della B.

Posted by Della B. on 12/27/2022 in Medical Marijuana

There’s a new Viagra on the market — and it goes by the name marijuana. Now that the positive and therapeutic effects of cannabis are more widely known and supported by emerging clinical studies, it is quickly becoming the sexual dysfunction treatment of choice for men interested in boosting their libido and sexual performance naturally. For many, marijuana is an organic alternative to many common and popular prescription medicines with far less intolerable side effects. It’s also a more affordable ED treatment than Viagra.

Cannabis doesn’t just help with pain, nausea, and disease management; it’s also been used for centuries for its aphrodisiac qualities. Reportedly, cannabis can alleviate many common sexual health disorders, including low libido, no sex drive, and sexual dysfunction.

Sadly, sexual performance issues impact women¹ more than men. Studies indicate that 52% percent of males have difficulty performing in the bedroom vs. the 63% of females who struggle with physical intimacy. But that hasn’t stopped big pharma and much of the medical and scientific communities from promoting awareness about erectile dysfunction and other male-related sexual health disorders. That hyperawareness eventually led to the development of Viagra, an incredibly popular pharmaceutical drug explicitly manufactured for men struggling with ED and sexual performance problems.

Is Cannabis a Natural Viagra?

Although Viagra, the libido-inducing pharmaceutical drug, is widely touted as the number one way to treat erectile dysfunction and sexual health disorders, cannabis is emerging as a natural alternative solution.

As beneficial and effective as Viagra is for men, not everyone can benefit from the drug. The associated risks with the drug include prolonged and painful erections or priapism, vision loss, hearing loss, heart arrhythmias, and stroke. The medication is also unsuitable for anyone with certain medical conditions, and additional medicines may be required to help offset the potential damage left behind on the user.

If you’ve ever heard of the connection between marijuana and an increased sexual desire, there’s a reason. Today, more people are aware of cannabis’s aphrodisiac qualities, but what is the connection between sexual health and marijuana? And more importantly, can this holistic substance serve as an adequate replacement for Viagra? We’ll answer these questions — and more — below.

How Does Viagra Work?

According to Viagra’s website, Viagra works by increasing blood flow to the vessels in the penis so men can achieve and sustain erections longer. It essentially improves the quality of erections. Because of its effectiveness, Viagra is one of the most popular erectile dysfunction medicines ever manufactured by the pharmaceutical industry to date!

Typically, for erections to occur, the brain sends nerve signals to the penis during arousal. These signals activate chemicals that promote blood flow by relaxing the surrounding muscles. For men with erectile dysfunction, the process of getting an erection is interrupted. Viagra releases chemicals in the body to prevent blood from leaving the penis, making erections easier to occur and maintain.

Some believe that Viagra can enhance a low libido. Contrary to this belief, the arousal response influences Viagra’s effectiveness. Men with low libido may not achieve the desired effects of taking this medication until they address the cause of their libido or low arousal issues.

Women Shouldn’t Use Viagra — But Cannabis Can Help

As popular as Viagra is for men, it’s no wonder women who encounter difficulties during sex are interested in it too. Men aren’t the only ones who experience issues regarding achieving an orgasm. Female sexual dysfunction is linked to hormonal irregularities, medical conditions, social stress², etc. It’s a widespread issue that deserves attention, too! Over 40 percent of American women³ struggle with sexual performance issues too!

Viagra is a male sexual enhancement medication that is an FDA-approved ED treatment. Yet many women use Viagra as an off-label solution for their sexual troubles. Even in women, Viagra increases blood flow to the genitals, heightening sensitivity and enhancing arousal. The downsides of Viagra use in women are the side effects and risks are more moderate than in men.

Despite experiencing libido-related issues, women should not use Viagra. The medication is made for men. The sole FDA-approved pharmaceutical medication available for women looking to improve their sex drive and response is Addyi. It’s recommended for perimenopausal women.

Fortunately, both men and women can enjoy the aphrodisiac and positive sexual health effects of cannabis.

Marijuana Can Increase Libido in Men and Women

Marijuana, unlike Viagra, targets the libido directly to improve sexual response. Cannabis has cannabinoids that interact with the endocannabinoid system in the brain and body to promote internal stability — or homeostasis.

The endocannabinoid system in the brain regulates feelings, such as pleasure, relaxation, and pain. Cannabis dampens the negative sensations and enhances the endocannabinoid system’s positive effects. Since the endocannabinoid system is responsible for pain regulation, mood stability, and pleasure sensations, the lack of sex-related pressure and pain coupled with increased feelings of arousal all work to help patients enjoy their sex lives to a greater degree.

Conversely, marijuana can worsen libido/sexual arousal in certain individuals. Studies suggest those at risk have other issues, such as mood disorders, hormonal imbalances, obesity, diabetes, and other medical conditions.

marijuana

Cannabis, a Natural Alternative to Viagra

The use of marijuana as an aphrodisiac⁴ dates back to ancient times, where Egyptian women and Hindus alike used cannabis to boost their sexual health and prowess in the bedroom. Currently, sexual dysfunction is not listed as an authorized use for cannabis where medical marijuana is legal, but that doesn’t mean that the substance doesn’t have libido and sexual performance enhancement properties.

Many regularly use cannabis as a natural alternative to Viagra because it has fewer adverse effects. Viagra requires the presence of desire and arousal to counteract erectile dysfunction. The drug cannot induce these feelings. As a result, it’s not an effective solution for all. Marijuana, on the other hand, can help treat a combination of physical, physiological, and psychological issues to lower stress, regulate hormones, enhance nerve signals, relax muscles, and improve blood flow to enhance the quality and duration of erections and sexual performance.

Marijuana is widely acclaimed for its ability to stimulate little to no adverse effects in its users, making it the ideal natural medicinal option for treating many health issues, including sexual dysfunction and low libido.

Can Marijuana Worsen Libido/Sexual Arousal in Some People?

There’s no shortage of anecdotal evidence suggesting that cannabis is a cure-all for low libido and sexual performance issues. Still, there are reports of its contradictory effects on men in particular. In a 2011 clinical study, researchers found that cannabis use increases the risk of erectile dysfunction and sexual health⁵ for certain males.

The presence of cannabis in the body reportedly excites specific receptors in the corpus cavernosum (erectile tissue forming the bulk of the penis) and impairs blood flow to the peripheral vessels of reproductive organs, thus unleashing a cascade of hazardous effects on male sexual function.

Pros and Cons of Marijuana vs. Viagra for ED

Before using either Viagra or marijuana for sexual and erectile dysfunction, it’s beneficial to weigh the pros and cons of each treatment.

The advantages of using cannabis instead of Viagra include the following:

  • Better moods
  • Less sexual stress and performance anxiety
  • Increased feelings of arousal, pleasure, and relaxation

These benefits are crucial to getting in the mood and staying in it for an enjoyable sexual experience.

The disadvantages of marijuana instead of Viagra are the positive effects are very dose-dependent. Individuals who use too much are more likely to have trouble maintaining their erections and experience some of the unwanted side effects of cannabis temporarily.

Overall, marijuana is helpful for getting and maintaining erections, boosting libido, and preventing sexual performance issues.

Viagra Pros and Cons

Viagra is a medicine commonly prescribed to men with erectile dysfunction and sexual performance challenges. The pros of daily or regular use include the following:

  • Improves oxygenation to enhance nighttime erections
  • Prevents penile tissue scars
  • Decreases the progression and severity of erectile dysfunction
  • Relaxes the smooth muscle in the prostate
  • Improves urinary/bladder function
  • Improves the health and function of the endothelial or lining of the blood vessels
  • Boosts users’ self-confidence and self-esteem

The cons of Viagra include the following:

  • Chest pain
  • Increased sensitivity to light
  • Muscle aches
  • Nose bleeds
  • Headaches
  • Sleep issues
  • Diarrhea
  • Tingling or numbness in the hands, arms, legs, or feet
  • Skin flushing
  • Rashes
  • Dizziness
  • Heartburn
  • Diarrhea
  • Heartburn
  • Vision changes
  • Tinnitus or ringing in the ears
  • Hearing loss
  • Visual disturbances pertaining to blue and green colors
  • Painful or prolonged erections lasting four hours or longer

Mental and physical stimulation are necessary to increase the medicine’s effectiveness so users can achieve the desired response, an erection.

Is CBD Similar to THC for Sex?

The right dose of cannabis can turn a lackluster sexual experience into an extraordinary one. Numerous studies indicate that over 80% of marijuana users enjoy better sexual pleasure, longer performance duration, increased sensitivity, and higher satisfaction with cannabis. THC-rich strains also intensify the sensations, while CBD-rich strains lower stress, anxiety, depression, and other mood impairments that can make it challenging to get and stay in the mood. CBD-rich strains excite the serotonin receptors in the brain and lower inflammation to help alleviate pain.

Because of its anti-psychoactive properties and positive effects on moods and sexual response, there’s growing interest in CBD-based lubrication and sexual enhancement products.

Cannabis or Viagra: Which Option Is Best for You?

Many find relief from sexual dysfunction with marijuana and Viagra, although the latter is the only FDA-approved treatment. However, Viagra is not suitable for everyone. Anyone contemplating either substance for their erectile dysfunction or libido troubles should remember that chemical or pharmaceutical-manufactured are more potent than natural options like marijuana.

Prescription ED drugs are FDA-approved and have intolerable side effects that increase with regular or prolonged use. Herbal medicines like cannabis are not currently authorized by the FDA but have a lower likelihood of adverse effects on users. Many people in the medical marijuana community rely on cannabis to treat various health conditions, including those associated with Viagra.

Both products are useful in improving the quality of erections in those experiencing difficulties. But only cannabis can help when other mitigating factors make arousal, desire, and sensitivity difficult.

Is it Okay to Use Both Viagra and Marijuana?

Like cannabis, Viagra works on PDE-5 inhibitors. These inhibitors are responsible for relaxing the muscles and increasing blood flow to the genitals. However, Viagra has no effect on the user’s moods, libido, or the pleasure center in their brain. Viagra simply helps users get and keep an erection.

Both substances have the potential for synergy when taken together for erectile dysfunction and sexual performance issues. But because the liver metabolizes cannabis, it increases the amount of Viagra in the blood, thus intensifying the likelihood of adverse reactions. The sedating effects of THC-rich strains can intensify when consumed alongside Viagra.

Therefore, CBD-dominant products are preferable. CBD inhibits the metabolization of THC by the liver, making it a safer alternative for those seeking to use cannabis and Viagra together.

Are There Other Weed and Medicine Combinations That Can Improve Sex?

People have used marijuana with herbal and prescription medicines to enhance their sexual experiences for decades. However, clinical studies on marijuana’s aphrodisiac benefits and interactions with other medications remain limited because of the federally illegal status of cannabis.

Anyone interested in using cannabis with other drugs or herbs should be wary. Marijuana contains compounds that reportedly inhibit certain enzymes in the body, especially the liver, that affect the way the body processes drugs. In short, cannabis can interfere with the way medicines are broken down and affects users.

biological makeup

To gain a better understanding, here’s some information about possible marijuana interactions with the following medications.

Benzodiazepines include Xanax (alprazolam), Ativan (lorazepam), Restoril (temazepam, Valium (diazepam, and Klonopin (clonazepam). These drugs are commonly used as muscle relaxers and antianxiety treatments. Using cannabis with these medications can increase the sedative and depressive effects of all substances on the central nervous system. Lower awareness, shallow breathing and decreased heart rates, blood pressure, dizziness, cognitive and motor skill response, and loss of consciousness can occur.

Antifungal meds like ketoconazole (Daktarin), clotrimazole (Canesten), fluconazole (Diflucan), and terbinafine (Lamisil) are commonly prescribed for those with fungal and yeast imbalances. These drugs impair the activity of certain enzymes necessary for the body to process the THC in marijuana. Combining these drugs with THC-rich cannabis strains elevates the concentration of THC in the bloodstream, intensifying its effects on the user. In some cases, marijuana decreases the effectiveness of antifungal treatment.

Diabetes medications like insulin and metformin are prescribed to regulate blood sugar levels and insulin activity in the body. The effects of marijuana on those taking medication for diabetes are a bit contradictory. On one hand, there are studies that highlight cannabis’ enhancing effect on insulin resistance, meaning some users experience better glucose control. But there are also studies showing a correlation between regular marijuana consumption and an elevated risk of developing prediabetes, the precursor to diabetes.

Blood thinners like warfarin, heparin, and dabigatran are anticoagulants that are prescribed to those with blood clotting disorders. While research is limited on the interactions of cannabis with blood thinners and other medications, there are studies that indicate marijuana has blood thinning and anticoagulant properties. When combined with blood thinner medications, marijuana inhibits their breakdown.

Antidepressants like Citalopram (Celexa), Paroxetine (Paxil), Fluoxetine (Prozac), Escitalopram (Lexapro), and Sertraline (Zoloft) are commonly prescribed to individuals with mood disorders like depression, and anxiety. Using marijuana while taking antidepressants increases the duration and severity of all substances sedating effects, increasing the likelihood of mania, psychosis, and dissociation.

Antibiotics treat various infections and diseases. When combined with marijuana, their effectiveness is lower. Some antibiotics speed up the metabolism rate of THC, thus lowering its positive effects and duration.

What Are the Best Strains of Weed to Enhance Libido, Arousal and Improve Sex?

  • Harlequin is a CBD-rich Sativa that is great for boosting focus and relaxation while alleviating pain. Its terpene profile consists of myrcene, beta-caryophyllene, pinene, and humulene.
  • Wedding Cake is an Indica-dominant hybrid strain that boosts 24-27% THC and improves user focus and sensations for a better sexual experience. Its terpene profile includes limonene for stamina and linalool for relaxation.
  • Sour Diesel is a safe bet for sexual situations where there may be mental difficulties with arousal. It’s a Sativa that contains 17-25% THC and is widely used for boosting energy and uplifting spirits. Its terpene profile includes Beta-Pinene, D-Limonene, Camphene, Myrcene, and Alpha-Pinene.
  • Girl Scout Cookies (or GSC) is a THC-dominant hybrid with THC levels as high as 28%. This strain is ideal for users who experience sexual issues due to pain, anxiety, and low moods. Its terpene profile includes linalool, myrcene, pinene, limonene, and caryophyllene.
  • Blue Dream is a Sativa-dominant hybrid that averages 17-24% THC. It lowers inhibitions and uplifts moods to encourage sexual pleasure and satisfaction. dream-like high it produces helps distract users from unwanted physical sensations and relaxes inhibitions, making it perfect for nerves that might prevent male arousal. Its terpene profile includes alpha-bisabolol, beta-caryophyllene, myrcene, and linalool.
  • Strawberry Diesel is a sativa-dominant hybrid that has up to 29% THC. It’s more sedative than uplifting, with long-lasting effects. Its terpene profile includes alpha-pinene, myrcene, beta-pinene, humulene, limonene, and beta-caryophyllene.

Marijuana Dosage Recommendations

When taking marijuana to enhance sexual performance and libido or prevent erectile dysfunction, moderation is key. Take too much, and instead of physical sexual bliss, you’re likely to end up having a relaxed and mind-blowing experience in your head. Use too little, and the outcome is likely to leave much to be desired.

When dosing with marijuana for sexual performance and erectile dysfunction, it’s best to start with a small amount and allow sufficient time to pass for the therapeutic effects to start. You can always take a little more as needed as time progresses. But if you start with too much, the effects may be too intense and unsettling to adjust to, especially for novice users. However, there are ways to counteract the effects of using too much marijuana.

Also, there are many ways to use cannabis. Marijuana edibles, tinctures, topicals, and lubes are great alternatives for those who prefer not to smoke or vape. Users should try different marijuana products, potencies, and consumption methods to determine.

Talk to a Licensed Medical Marijuana Doctor Near You

When it comes to using marijuana to treat a health issue, such as sexual dysfunction, it’s important to understand that the delivery method, dosage, and quality of your cannabis all matter. You can’t purchase marijuana blindly and expect to enjoy sexual pleasure automatically. Always secure your stash from reputable places like a medical or recreational dispensary.

While it’s best to consult with a trained medical marijuana-friendly professional before seeking marijuana to treat a health issue, there are a few pointers to keep in mind to help ensure that you achieve your desired effect:

  • Quality: Purchase your cannabis from a certified and esteemed dispensary to ensure you’re using the most potent and effective marijuana for your needs.
  • Although all intake methods of cannabis can help you enjoy its positive health impact, smoking or vaporizing may be ideal as these represent the fastest ingestion methods available to users. Other methods to try are marijuana-infused lubricants.
  • Dosage: It’s crucial not to use too high of a dose, either. When ingesting cannabis products with THC, using marijuana in high dosages can have unwanted psychological effects that interfere with any aphrodisiac qualities.

No sexual dysfunction remedy will be one-size-fits-all. While some people rely on cannabis to solve their sexual-related issues, there’s usually a bit of trial-and-error to discover what works best for them.

Everyone has a unique biological and psychological makeup that impacts how they respond to different medications. If this is your first-time trying cannabis to treat erectile dysfunction or another sexual health issue, consider starting with a low dose while under the supervision of a trained medical professional.

If you’ve tried Viagra or similar medications to no avail, it may be time to consider a natural alternative. Marijuana may help you improve your sexual health with little to no adverse side effects in the process.

However, cannabis isn’t legal in every U.S. state. Before you decide to pursue this option for its aphrodisiac and sexual aid qualities, you’ll want to research the rules and regulations that guide the use of this substance in your state. Can you lawfully access marijuana in your state? Plug your zip code into our online directory to find out more about the cannabis laws in your area. Always consult your doctor before using medical cannabis to treat a condition.


Sources

  1. https://insiderx.com/blog/sexual-dysfunction
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8623679/
  3. https://www.floridahospital.com/female-sexual-dysfunction/statistics-female-sexual-dysfunction
  4. https://www.bbc.co.uk/bbcthree/article/491798b4-6614-4800-86fa-11ec87616595
  5. https://www.jsm.jsexmed.org/article/S1743-6095(15)33490-1/fulltext

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