What Happens to the Body When There Has Been a Long Break in Physical Intimacy

What Happens to the Body When There Has Been a Long Break in Physical Intimacy

Everyone goes through dry spells. But how does a lack of sex impact your health?

Puberty. Seven letters that can change your life... quite literally. Numerous changes occur, preparing your body to enter the realms of womanhood. The hormones required to begin an active sex life are kicked into overdrive such that it becomes a part of your life. However, as wonderful as sex can be, abstaining from intercourse for long periods of time can have devastating effects on your body.

Not only does it affect your physical health, but it also affects your mental well-being. Here are six ways your body might suffer from not being intimate for a long period.

1. You'll feel a drop in your sex drive

This is only natural. When you've been engaging in sexual intercourse for a while, your libido gets a boost. And the more you have it, the more your libido improves. Considering that your body has gotten used to the physical activity and mental stimulation, your drive can take a hit if it is not continued. You might just lose interest in sex itself. Like a gym workout, the more you exercise, the more your body will get fit. The moment you stop, the less you'll feel like doing it.

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2. You'll feel a fluctuation in your stress level

You might not be suffering from high levels of stress, but considering how sex is a great stress buster, abstaining from it might cause your emotions to bounce all over the place. All the hormones that are released during the activity are suddenly inactive which can cause you to have mood swings. 

One study conducted at the University of the West of Scotland shows that sex, like exercise, has the ability to reduce anxiety, lower stress hormones and can help you cope with mental pressure, at least for a month, NBC reports. 

3. You might start to feel down in the dumps

Sexual intercourse isn't just a physical activity. It also plays a role in mental and emotional regulation. “When people have sex they’re usually having skin-to-skin contact, and this kind of contact is the first primal way we as humans get comforted [as babies with our mothers],”  Sari Cooper, certified sex therapist says. “Sexual connection give partners loads of skin-to-skin caressing and touch and can help to regulate one another’s moods,” through the release of the "love hormone" oxytocin. So when you don't engage in such intimacy, your mood can fall and you may feel depressed.

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4. Your immunity takes a nosedive

Sexual intercourse can provide your body and mind with ample stimulation. But a healthy sex life can also boost your immune system. According to psychologists Carl Charnetski and Francis Brennan Jr, orgasms can be extremely beneficial to your immune system. In a study they conducted, they requested sexually active couples to provide saliva samples. In those samples, they discovered that one particular common cold antibody was in abundance. So by abstaining from sex, you actually risk falling sick more often.

5. Your weight and heart may be affected

It's not unknown that sex is a great way to burn some calories. Not to mention, it's one of the most effective methods in pumping blood to all the parts of the body. Considering this, frequent intercourse can actually reduce heart issues. Additionally, sexual intercourse can keep your estrogen in balance so a lack of it can result in your increased risk of suffering from heart diseases.

6. Lack of sleep

Since sex is a good way to reduce stress, not engaging in it can allow stress to build up over time. This stress can then eat into your sleeping hours which may even lead to insomnia. You might start to overthink and allow irrelevant thoughts to occupy your mind during the time you should be sleeping. This lack of restful sleep could result in increased lethargy and disruption of your normal body functions.