Changes in Sexual Desire and Behaviors among UK Young Adults During Social Lockdown Due to COVID-19

Wignall, Liam, Portch, Emma, McCormack, Mark, Owens, Rebecca, Cascalheira, Cory, Attard-Johnson, Janice and Cole, Teri (2021) Changes in Sexual Desire and Behaviors among UK Young Adults During Social Lockdown Due to COVID-19. The Journal of Sex Research. ISSN 0022-4499

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Abstract

This study examined self-reported changes in young adults’ sexual desire and behaviors during the most significant social restrictions imposed to deal with COVID-19. Drawing on a survey of 565 British adults aged 18–32 collected at the peak of social lockdown restrictions, we document an overall decrease in sexual behaviors consistent with abiding by social restrictions. We found that the levels of sexual desire reported by women (but not men) decreased compared with reports of pre-lockdown levels. Participants in serious relationships reported more increases in sexual activity than people who were single or dating casually, and there were significant differences according to gender and sexual orientation. The perceived impact of subjective wellbeing of people with high sociosexuality scores was disproportionately associated with social lockdown but there was no effect for general health. Thus, the impact on sexuality and general wellbeing should be considered by policymakers when considering future social restrictions related to COVID-19 or other public health emergencies.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Psychology
Divisions: Faculty of Health Sciences and Wellbeing > School of Psychology
Depositing User: Rebecca Owens
Date Deposited: 30 Mar 2021 11:27
Last Modified: 30 Mar 2021 11:30
URI: http://sure.sunderland.ac.uk/id/eprint/13332
ORCID for Liam Wignall: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-3456-5777
ORCID for Mark McCormack: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-8772-0814
ORCID for Rebecca Owens: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-6630-5216
ORCID for Cory Cascalheira: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-5780-3101
ORCID for Janice Attard-Johnson: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-0563-0197
ORCID for Teri Cole: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-7649-480X

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