Original Illustration by Stephanie DeAngelis
Aside from deepening intimacy with your partner, having sex can relieve stress, alleviate pain, improve your quality of sleep, and even serve as a good workout. But one benefit in particular often outlasts the rest: That certain glow you get after having particularly good sex with your partner; a noticeable side effect that can actually last up to two full days.
Dubbed the "sexual afterglow" by a new study published in Psychological Science, this radiant positivity and affection you feel for your partner can last for up to 48 hours and is linked to how happy you are in your relationship. "Sex presumably facilitates pair bonding, but how do partners remain pair-bonded between sexual acts?" write the researchers of the catalyst behind their research. "Evolutionary perspectives suggest that sexual afterglow serves this purpose."
To arrive at this conclusion, the scientists analyzed data from two separate studies: One with 96 newlywed couples, and the other with 118 newlywed couples. Both groups were asked to keep track of their daily sexual activity, sexual satisfaction, and overall relationship satisfaction over a two-week period. Four to six months later, they reported marriage satisfaction once again.
"No matter participants' genders, ages, relationship lengths, personality traits, sexual frequency, or anything else, they reported heightened sexual satisfaction for a full two days after having sex," writes Cosmopolitan. What's more, this can help you and your partner stay in the honeymoon phase well after you tie the knot.
For more, read up on the key indicators of a good sex life, and share your thoughts on the new study below!