Getting a healthy dose of sex is not the key to happiness, researchers say, if happy people generally have a robust sex life, it is not automatically linked to the quantity of sex they are having.
To investigate if a pivotal relationship exists between happiness and sexual frequency, Carnegie Mellon University researchers assembled 128 couples in 2 groups, one was instructed to have more sex, double their weekly sex frequency, than the separate group.
Online questionnaires were used by the researchers to track the couples’ happiness in 3 months of the study.
By the study period end, couples having more frequent sex than normal actually experienced a slight reduction in happiness, reported the researchers in the Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization.
The researchers acknowledge that more frequent sex didn’t lessen the desire to have sex or the enjoyment derived out of it, instead, the reported slight decline in happiness was maybe due to being asked to increase the frequency instead of being able to initiate sex on their own.
“Perhaps couples changed the story they told themselves about why they were having sex, from an activity voluntarily engaged into one that was part of a research study,” says George Lowenstein, the lead study investigator.
“If we ran the study again, and could afford to do it, we would try to encourage subjects into initiating more sex in ways that put them in a sexy frame of mind, perhaps with baby-sitting, hotel rooms or Egyptian sheets, rather than directing them to do so,” he declared.
Notwithstanding the findings of the small and limited study, Lowenstein says many couples tend to have sex too seldom, and that increasing the frequency of intercourse can increase happiness in a relationship.
Tamar Krishnamurti, the study co-author says, the findings can help couples escalate happiness by improving their sexual activity, and not essentially how often they engage in the act.
Quality can be as important as quantity, she suggests.
“Instead of focusing on increasing sexual frequency to the levels they experienced at the beginning of a relationship, couples may want to work on creating an environment that sparks their desire and makes the sex that they do have even more fun,” she ended.