Pornography, Health Consequences of

Social scientists use the term pornography in reference to media content designed to sexually arouse consumers via the presentation of nudity and graphic sexual acts. Pornography depicts behaviors that, if enacted by viewers, may adversely impact their health and the health of others. Consequently, health communication scholars have conducted studies designed to provide insight into whether pornography affects viewers' health-related behaviors. Potential impacts on sexual aggression and sexual risk (i.e., sex associated with outcomes such as unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections, or STIs) have been particular foci. This entry explores the prevalence of pornography consumption, the messages pornography sends regarding sexual aggression and sexual risk, and the possible effects of viewing pornography on sexually aggressive and sexually risky behavior.


Youth across cultures consume pornography. A ...

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