This is how the sex lives of young people have changed since 1990

Joe Vesey-Byrne
Monday 20 November 2017 09:15
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People born 1993-2001 have a spicier sex life than the generation that came before them, study finds.

It appears that the sexual revolution was not confined to the generation that came of age in the 1960s.

A new study by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and University College London has found an increasing diversity in bedroom practises among heterosexual young people.

Published in the Journal of Adolescent Health, the study was conducted every ten years since 1990, taking in 45,000 participants, aged 16-24.

Taking data from the National Surveys of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles, the researchers found that heterosexuals were engaging in a more diverse range sexual habits in 2010 than was the case in 2000 and 1990.

Kissing and sexual intercourse

Average age of kissing and other first forms of sexual contact was one of those things that remained static, at the age 14.

What had changed, was the interval between first sexual contact, and first instance of sexual intercourse.

For people in the same bracket (the ones born 1990-1996), the average age of first intercourse was 16.

Vaginal, oral, and, anal sex

The number of men and women who claimed to have had vaginal, oral, and anal sex was one in 10 for the generation between 16 and 24 in 1990-91.

Roll around to 2010-12, and that figure is one in four men, and one in five women.

Some of the largest increases in participants in oral and anal sex were among the 16-18 year old bracket.

Sexual trends

Lead author on the study, Dr Ruth Lewis, explained the importance of understanding sexual trends among young people.

By shedding light on when some young people are having sex and what kinds of sex they are having, our study highlights the need for accurate sex and relationships education that provides opportunities to discuss consent and safety in relation to a range of sexual practices.

This will equip young people with the information and skills they need to maximise their wellbeing from the outset of their sexual lives.

According to senior author Professor Kaye Wellings, the trend towards more diverse sexual activity reflects trends in other aspects of the sexual experience.

The changes in practices we see here are consistent with the widening of other aspects of young people's sexual experience, and are perhaps not surprising given the rapidly changing social context and the ever-increasing number of influences on sexual behaviour.

It is important to keep up to date with trends in sexual lifestyles to help young people safeguard their health and increase their well being

HT Eureka Alert

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