Health & Lifestyle

Having sex before bed slashes your time of falling asleep by a fifth, study finds

Having sex before bed slashes the time it takes to fall asleep by a fifth (but masturbating DOESN’T work!)

Sex can do wonders for a rocky relationship, but it also might be the key to a great night’s sleep.

A study in the Netherlands found that having intercourse before bed slashed the time it took for men and women to fall asleep by a fifth and boosted sleep quality.

But this was only the case when someone experienced an orgasm, which made men more likely to reap the benefits of pre-sleep sex.

Unfortunately for women and singletons, the study suggested that climaxing through masturbation did not affect sleep.

Endorphins released during sex can have a relaxing effect that may lead someone to fall asleep faster, scientists say.

Orgasms before bed can help you to fall asleep faster and feel better rested the next day, scientists say (stock image)

Orgasms before bed can help you to fall asleep faster and feel better rested the next day, scientists say (stock image) 

For the study, researchers at Groningen University in the Netherlands recruited undergraduates who were about 22 years old.

Each was asked to fill in a survey assessing the time it took them to fall asleep — or sleep latency — and how rested they felt just after waking up.

The survey also asked them about their sexual activity and masturbation over the 24 hours before going to bed and whether or not they had orgasmed.

They were also asked about their alcohol intake — which can affect sleep — and asked whether or not they were insomniacs.

They excluded participants who took antidepressants or hard drugs such as cocaine, MDMA or shrooms. 

Results showed that participants who had partnered sex and orgasmed took about 16 minutes to fall asleep on average.

For comparison, those who went to bed as normal took 21 minutes to fall asleep — which was five minutes, or 23 percent, longer.

Participants who said they masturbated took 26 minutes to fall asleep on average, or 20 minutes when this led to an orgasm. 

But this was comparable to nights when there was no sexual activity when it took 21 minutes for them to fall asleep on average.

Researchers also found that participants who had partnered sex and orgasmed were more likely to report higher quality sleep. 

This was not the case for those who masturbated, however, with no difference in sleep quality between them and those who went to bed as normal. 

The scientists suggested the sleep benefits may have only applied to people who orgasmed because of surges in hormone levels.

Studies have shown that after an orgasm during partnered sex levels of the hormone prolactin — linked to sleep — surge by up to 400 percent. 

This study was published this year in the Journal of Sleep Research. 

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