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Porn link to inconsistent teen condom use

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Watching pornography has been linked to risky sexual behaviours among Australian teenagers, including not using condoms.

A study on sexual health has found that young people who consume pornography from a young age are more likely to engage in sexual behaviour early on.

And weekly pornographic viewing was significantly associated with inconsistent condom use with casual partners, engaging in anal intercourse and sexting.

The research was conducted by the Burnet institute’s Centre for Population Health and will be presented at the 2014 Sexual Health Conference in Sydney on Thursday.

The study’s lead researcher Dr Megan Lim said while sexual behaviour is incredibly complex, there is a strong correlation between watching porn and sexual behaviour.

“What we found is there is an association, so that young people who watch porn are also more likely to engage in certain behaviours,” Lim told AAP.

“Young people who are more interested in a variety of different sexual things, a bit more sexually developed, are the ones who watch porn more.”

“The people who watch porn are the same people who don’t use a condom.”

The survey found Australians who viewed adult material at a younger age have a significantly earlier sexual debut, with a median age of 16 years.

More than 70 per cent of surveyed Australians aged between 15 and 29 indicated that they viewed pornography, with 14 being the median age of first viewing pornography.

An associated study found that there is an alarming disconnect between teenagers’ perceptions of sexting and the actions they take.

While 77 per cent of respondents agreed that “It should be illegal to pass on a sext without permission”, a third said that they “might show a sext” they received to friends.

Lim said a higher percentage of homosexual Australians regularly watched porn compared with heterosexuals.

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