ABSTRACT. Despite the relevance of relational and sexual health during the COVID-19 lockdown, only limited research has been conducted on this topic. In this article, I cumulate previous research findings indicating that sexual activity and a gratifying sexual life have optimized physical health and quality of life throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. I contribute to the literature on sexual behavior and individuals’ intimate lives by showing that the COVID-19 outbreak has intensified social isolation and depressive symptoms, shaping romantic relationships and sexual behavior. Throughout May 2021, I performed a quantitative literature review of the Web of Science, Scopus, and ProQuest databases, with search terms including “sexual health + COVID-19,” “sexual activity + COVID-19,” “sexual relation + COVID-19,” “sexual behavior + COVID-19,” and “sexual life + COVID-19.” As I inspected research published in 2020 and 2021, only 378 articles satisfied the eligibility criteria. By eliminating controversial findings, outcomes unsubstantiated by replication, too imprecise material, or having similar titles, I decided upon 21, generally empirical, sources. Subsequent analyses should develop on COVID-19-related sexual functioning of individuals and couples. Future research should thus investigate how romantic and sexual experiences have optimized psychological well-being. Attention should be directed to how social and sexual contacts have been related to mental well-being during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Keywords: relational; sexual; health; COVID-19; lockdown; intimacy

How to cite: Adams, D. (2021). “Relational and Sexual Health during the COVID-19 Lockdown: Cognitive, Emotional, and Behavioral Disorders,” Journal of Research in Gender Studies 11(2): 46–58. doi: 10.22381/JRGS11220213.

Received 28 June 2021 • Received in revised form 24 December 2021
Accepted 26 December 2021 • Available online 30 December 2021

Donald Adams
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
The Cognitive Labor Institute,
New York City, NY, USA

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