Researchers at the Department of Psychology of Northern Illinois University have noticed that humans are gross and decided to find out why we keep screwing anyway. Their findings, simply put: Dudes just don't care, and girls can become aroused enough to overcome their deep-seated aversion.
As Psychology Today reports, the study, entitled Effects of Subjective Sexual Arousal on Sexual, Pathogen, and Moral Disgust Sensitivity in Women and Men found that we are hard-wired to avoid germs, a fear that drives our aversion response to getting too intimate with other people. The fact that we still get it on anyway is attributable, they say, to evolution's ability to resolve our internal conflicts. "We want to avoid contamination from potentially dangerous substances," writes PT, "and yet we are also motivated to attain mates, as we do need to pass on our genes."
According to the NIU researchers, the human brain has developed the ability to dampen revulsion in what they term "reproductively-relevant situations." We get too horny to stay grossed-out.
This is more crucial to a woman's desire than it is to a man's. According to Psychology Today, the researchers found that, overall, "men showed very low levels of sexual disgust." In fact, they displayed almost no disgust at all: "[The] measured repugnance was so small in the first place that it had nowhere to go in terms of getting lower with sexual arousal."
Past research has shown, however, that women are easily revolted—particularly in sexual matters. Oddly, the researchers chose to ignore the effects of mood lighting, well-fitting jeans and manscaping.
Psychology Today notes other findings in the study indicate "physically attractive women may have a larger number of sexual partners simply because they have more eager suitors," and "that shorter-term mating looms larger in men's than in women's relationship psychology." That we knew.
There's a chance findings like these could be used to forecast future levels of sexual satisfaction and whether or not a partner is more or less likely to screw around in a long-term relationship.
It could also be used to encourage guys to keep on shaving, brushing their teeth and showering at regular intervals. It certainly can't hurt.
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