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Shervin Assari does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.
Sex has a strong influence on many aspects of well-being: it is one of our most basic physiological needs.
The depression and stress it causes can get in the way, as can certain medications for chronic pain.
Metabolic conditions such as diabetes and obesity reduce sexual activity.
Individuals who are lonely sometimes replace actual sexual relations with the use of pornography.
Yet while our society focuses a lot on having sex, we do not know as much about not having it.
Some doctors feel that addressing sexual issues creates too much closeness to the patient.
Others think talking about sexuality will take too much time.
In fact, diabetes hastens sexual decline in men by as much as 15 years.
Large body mass and poor body image ruin intimacy, which is core to the opportunity for having sex.
Other research also confirms that women more commonly avoid sex than men. More teenage females than teenage males abstain from sex.