Indirect effects of acute alcohol intoxication on sexual risk-taking: The roles of subjective and physiological sexual arousal

William H. George, Kelly Cue Davis, Jeanette Norris, Julia R. Heiman, Susan A. Stoner, Rebecca L. Schacht, Christian S. Hendershot, Kelly F. Kajumulo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

99 Scopus citations

Abstract

Three experiments supported the idea that alcohol fosters sexual risk-taking in men and women, in part, through its effects on sexual arousal. In Experiment 1, increasing alcohol dosage (target blood alcohol levels of .00, .04, .08%) heightened men's and women's risk-taking intentions. Alcohol's effect was indirect via increased subjective sexual arousal; also, men exhibited greater risk-taking than women. In Experiment 2, an extended dosage range (target blood alcohol levels of .00, .06, .08, .10%) heightened men's risk-taking intentions. Alcohol's effect again was indirect via subjective arousal. Physiological sexual arousal, which was unaffected by alcohol, increased risk-taking via increased subjective arousal. In Experiment 3, alcohol increased women's risk-taking indirectly via subjective arousal, but alcohol-attenuated physiological arousal had no effect on risk-taking. Implications for alcohol myopia theory and prevention interventions are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)498-513
Number of pages16
JournalArchives of Sexual Behavior
Volume38
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2009

Keywords

  • Alcohol
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Sexual arousal
  • Sexual risk

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology(all)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Indirect effects of acute alcohol intoxication on sexual risk-taking: The roles of subjective and physiological sexual arousal'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this