We all know that the fear of public speaking is one of the biggest fears that most people have. Just the thought of having to get up in front of a group of people can cause some to go into full panic attacks. There a many different methods to combating this fear: deep breathing exercises, NLP (Neural Linguistic Programming), even drug therapy. However, a researcher from Scotland has discovered another method for reducing stress: Sex.
In 2006, Stuart Brody, a psychologist at the University of Paisley, discovered that sex lead to a reduced level of stress. The study examined the effect of various sexual activities of 22 men and 24 women over a 14 day period. The subjects kept diaries of the frequency of their sexual activity. After the 14 days, each subject was put through a variety of stress tests that involved public speaking and performing an oral exam of math questions.
It was shown that the subjects that had penetrative sex had lower stress levels than those that had no sex or only masturbation. It also showed that these subjects had their blood pressure return to normal much faster than the others. The study also showed that those who had no sexual activity at all had the highest stress levels and blood pressure.
Dr. Brody attributes the reduction in stress to the stimulation of a wide range of nerves that are involved in intercourse. However, these nerves are not stimulated in other forms of sexual activity. He also showed the women responded better, claiming that the nerves in the vagina play a role in the the psychological process. The hormone Oxytocin released during sex can also aid in the stress reduction process, he claims. The study also showed that higher frequency of intercourse leads to “greater benefits” in stress reduction.
Although sex can help reduce the stress associated with public speaking, it is still recommended that you properly prepare for your speech by doing the necessary research, preparation, and practice. It just won’t hurt to have the additional stress reduced by having sex the night before.