You begin to sip on a beer, then one becomes two and the next thing you know, it’s progressed to shots of your favourite whiskey.

Which is probably what happened this past weekend as it was definitely a good sporting weekend- rugby, soccer and cricket.

Since the weekend was filled with alcoholic celebrations have you ever made out with a stranger and sloppily taking each other’s clothes off, but when it came down to sex; you could not get it up?

Are you suffering from a sudden case of the ‘whiskey d—k’.

Contrary to popular belief, alcohol and sex do not mix, even though alcohol is believed to be an aphrodisiac, however it can actually have the opposite effect by inhibiting your ability to attain an erection and orgasm; which makes it more of an anaphrodisaic.

According to the Mayo Clinic “Excessive drinking is a common cause of erectile dysfunction. As the amount of alcohol in the blood increases, the alcohol decreases the brain’s ability to sense sexual stimulation.”

Alcohol acts as a depressant by directly affecting your penis by interfering with parts of your nervous system, which are vital for sexual arousal, orgasm, circulation and respiration of nerve endings.

This is what researchers found at Brown University and was published in the Health Promotion.

No matter how much you try, without sufficient blood flow which regulates the relaxation and contraction of the penis in order to get an erection; your penis will remain flaccid.

A study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine in 2009, found that “less volume of liquid in the body in conjunction with a depressed nervous system, led to a struggle with sexual performance. This is because alcohol can dehydrate the body, decreasing blood volume while increasing the hormone associated with erectile dysfunction — angiotensin.”

What level of drinking is best for my sex life?

If you want to have good sex for years to come, it does not mean that you have to stop drinking alcohol at all, but rather drink alcohol in moderation.

Moderate drinking means that you should not consume more than two drinks and only one for women as your liver can only process one standard drink in an hour.

What happens if you have more than two alcoholic beverages?

According to Medical Daily, if you have more than one alcoholic drink then this can “lead the system to become saturated, where extra alcohol will increase in the blood and body tissues, until the liver is ready to metabolize it again.”

Until your liver is ready to metabolise, the increased blood alcohol level will last for several hours and bam! It begins to affect you physiologically.

A 2004 study, published in the Seminars in Vascular Medicine journal found that consuming alcohol in moderation can be beneficial to your health, and thus your sex life.

This brings us to the all-important question: Whiskey Penis’: Urban Legend or Fact?

Retrospectively whiskey d–k does exist, yes.

Consuming large amounts of alcohol will affect your sex life; however this is not limited to whiskey. As the type of alcohol does not differ from another when it boils down to the influence in sexual performance.

The blood alcohol level, what you’ve eaten, and your weight are what determine the effect alcohol has on your body.”

Keep this in mind the next time you go out drinking and if you want to hook up with a stranger, its best to go home solo if you’ve had one to many.

Sources: Medical Daily, Seminars in Vascular Medicine, Journal of Sexual Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Brown University Health Promotion.

Alice Paulse