Only 4 out of 10 Britons engage in sexual activity during lockdown

Many countries are expecting a baby boom following the prolonged lockdown across the world that kept partners together for a longer time. But, it may not be fully true, if a recent survey in Britain is any indication.

Only four in 10 UK adults have been sexually active during the lockdown, according to the study published in The Journal of Sexual Medicine and led by Dr. Lee Smith of Anglia Ruskin University (ARU) and Professor Mark Tully of Ulster University.

Only 39.9% of the 868 British adults surveyed had taken part in any form of sexual activity during the previous seven days. The study found that being younger, male, married and a consumer of alcohol was associated with greater sexual activity.

The findings have gone against the common belief that the social distancing and self-isolation could promote sexual activity as a mode of stress release or to maintain physical and mental health.

Dr. Lee Smith, Reader in Physical Activity and Public Health at Anglia Ruskin University (ARU), said: “When starting this research we expected there to be a high level of sexual activity while social isolating at home, but interestingly we found a very low level.

“This low level of sexual activity could be explained by people currently feeling anxious and stressed owing to the pandemic and not being in the mood to engage in the act. Moreover, those who are not married or cohabiting may not currently be able to meet up with their sexual partners and similarly those who use online apps to facilitate casual sex will currently not be able to do this.

“A lot of my previous research has shown that a frequent and trouble-free sex life is important for higher levels of enjoyment of life and general mental health, and this is particularly true for older adults. However, this study showed that older adults were less likely than younger adults to engage in sexual activity.”


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