Home Doctor NewsSexual health All you need to know about having multiple sexual partners!

All you need to know about having multiple sexual partners!

by Pragati Singh

A person may have more than one sexual partner at a time if they have several sexual partners. Alternatively, it may imply having several lovers at once. According to a 2018 research, having numerous sexual partners is defined as “having more than one sexual partner throughout time.”

This could entail switching between different sexual partners. It might also refer to having several sexual partners at the same time. The typical number of sexual partners that people have is examined in this article. It also looks at the potential advantages and drawbacks of having many partners.

How many sexual partners does the typical person have?

Family Growth National Survey

Statistics from 2015 to 2019 are available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the United States on persons who have engaged in vaginal, oral, or anal intercourse with a partner of a different sex. According to the data, the median number of sexual partners for men and women was 6.3 and 4.3 respectively.
An online poll for 2021
A study by Trusted Source of 1,987 persons between the ages of 18 and 70 examined sexual behaviour trends across a range of ages, ethnicities, sexual orientations, and socioeconomic statuses.

The average number of lifetime sexual partners among all participants was:

  • For oral sex, 8.5
  • 11.4 for genitalia
  • For anal sex, 2.1

Researchers observed that:

  • 2.4% of participants claimed to have engaged in oral intercourse with more than 50 people.
  • 3.9% claimed to have engaged in more than 50 vaginal sex relationships.
  • 3.6% claimed to have engaged in anal intercourse with more than 15 people.

After reaching a peak for males at age 60 and females at age 40, the number of sexual partners throughout a lifetime began to fall.

Is having several sexual partners acceptable?

Having several sexual partners is OK. Sexual health is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as: a state of well-being physically, emotionally, mentally, and socially with regard to sexuality; a positive, respectful approach to sexual relationships and sexuality; the possibility of having safe, pleasurable sexual experiences; and the respect, protection, and realisation of the sexual rights of all parties involved.

According to the American Sexual Health Association (ASHA), there is no right or wrong way to experience sexual pleasure as long as there is consent and no risk to anybody involved. This may entail engaging in several sexual relationships.  According to ASHA, recognising one’s own sexual needs and responsibilities as well as acknowledging those of one’s partner or partners are key components of a fulfilling sexual life.


According to studies from 2021, having sex may have the following advantages:

Improved sleep: According to research by 2019Trusted Source, orgasms aid in the promotion of sleep. The impression of better sleep outcomes was associated with orgasms with a partner, while higher sleep quality was associated with orgasms during masturbation.

Improved immune function: An earlier study from 2004 discovered that those who engaged in sexual activity once or twice a week had higher levels of IgA, a pathogen-fighting antibody.

Release of oxytocin: This hormone has a beneficial effect on how people cope with stress, anxiety, and bad situations.

Improved physical health: Sexual activity is a form of physical activity, which is good for the heart and the brain. A 2013Trusted Source study discovered that sexual activity of a moderate intensity can be considered a substantial kind of exercise.

Improved longevity for men: According to research, men’s sexual activity, interest in sex, and the quality of their sex life are all associated in a favourable way with a higher life expectancy. Additionally, sexual engagement was linked to a decreased chance of dying from cancer and other diseases.

Sexual interactions may also have a favourable impact on general happiness and life satisfaction. Increased mortality rates and self-reported rates of poor health may be linked to lower levels of sexual engagement.

Having several partners could:

  • provide, sexual fulfillment, variety, and pleasure
  • enhance endorphin production, which aids in the fight against infections and cancer cells
  • reduce low levels of potential sexual interest


The English Longitudinal Study of Aging discovered that having more sexual partners might raise your chance of getting STIs (STIs). These can then result in health hazards, even as people age.

In comparison to having one sexual partner or none, the researchers discovered that having 10 or more lifetime partners raised the probability of receiving a cancer diagnosis.

For instance, hepatitis B and C can raise the chance of getting liver cancer. Additionally, the human papillomavirus, or HPV, can raise the chance of developing:

  • cervical cancer
  • mouth cancer
  • anal cancer
  • penile cancer
  • prostate cancer

Males who had more than 20 female sexual partners, however, had a lower risk of prostate cancer, according to an older study from 2014.

The study also discovered that men who have had more than 20 male partners may be at a higher risk for prostate cancer.

The risk of HIV transmission might also rise with many partners.

Psychological impact:

In a 2018 study, the relationship between depression, drug usage, and the quantity of sex partners was examined.

199 Northern and Indigenous ladies from the Canadian Northwest Territories, aged 13 to 17, were involved in the research.

The study did not discover a connection between depression and the number of sex partners people had. Drug usage had an impact on a person’s number of sex partners after having a direct impact on depression and substance use.

A previous study from 2013Trusted Source showed no correlation between anxiety or depression and having numerous relationships, although it did find a link between drug usage and having multiple partners.

The benefits of sexual activity may include improved moods, less stress, and better sleep.

Physical impact:

According to research, more frequent sex reduces the chance of deadly heart conditions, prostate cancer, and breast cancer.

The frequency and quality of sex exhibited protective benefits against cardiovascular issues in later life among the 1,158 female and 1,046 male participants, who were 57-85 years old and resided in the U.S.

Researchers have connected the endorphins released during sexual engagement to an increase in the activity of natural killer cells. This action include assisting in the battle against viruses and cancer cells.

Based on a 2018 research, the timing of partnerships may be related to a higher risk of getting a STI.

People may be more likely to get STIs or spread these diseases if they have several sexual partners in a particular time frame.

The study discovered that when there was a pause between sexual partners, the risk of receiving a STI diagnosis was significantly reduced. A separation of four months or more for females and six months or longer for males decreased the likelihood of receiving a STI diagnosis.

A increased risk of HIV exposure or transmission may also exist for those who engage in many sex relationships.

Emotional impact:

In the 2017 British National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles, 6,669 females and 4,839 men aged 16 to 74 years old were asked about the causes of their lack of interest in sex. The individuals disclosed having at least one sexual partner in the previous year, whether they were of the same sex or not.

According to the study, women who had three or more sexual partners in the previous year were less likely to report having little interest in sex than women who had only one partner during that time.

No correlation between having many sexual partners and having little interest in men was discovered by the poll.

Sex with numerous partners may feel impersonal to some individuals, and this might have a bad emotional effect. The emotional toll of ending short-term relationships is also possible.


Some methods for having numerous sexual partners without risky behaviour include:

  • using a condom or a dental dam every time
  • having regular STI testing
  • using condoms on sex toys, and washing toys before and after each use
  • avoiding excess alcohol and drug use, as this can increase risk-taking

According to ASHA, a person who engages in sexual non-monogamy and consistently and correctly employs barrier measures is less likely to develop a STI than a person who engages in mutual, serial monogamy, doesn’t use barrier methods, or has a partner who is STI-unknown.


If a person has intercourse with one person, then another afterwards, they have numerous sexual partners. If a person has more than one sexual partner at the same time, they also have numerous partners. Having several sexual partners is acceptable as long as everyone gives their consent and is not put in danger. Having more than one spouse can have both advantages and disadvantages. Use barrier measures and undergo frequent STI testing to engage in safe sex.


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