Study: vibrators and positive attitudes boost sexual satisfaction and function

Positive attitudes about vibrators combined with regular use had the largest impact on sexual satisfaction. Women who thought positively of vibrators and who had used one in the past month reported higher levels of arousal, lubrication, orgasm and sexual satisfaction, as well as lower levels of pain during sex than those women with positive beliefs who had not used a vibrator recently. Conversely, those who used vibrators but who had negative feelings regarding sex toys did not experience the same boost in sexual function.

Another myth debunked by the study is that men are scared of vibrators. While 37% of women agreed with the idea that vibrators are intimidating to women's partners, 70% of men disagreed. Furthermore, vibrator use was correlated to sexual satisfaction particularly when a woman's partner knew she used a vibrator and felt good about it.

In essence, it is not just vibrator use that matters when it comes to sexual satisfaction, but also the attitudes that women and their partners have regarding vibrators. A previous study found that women who used vibrators with their female partners were more sexually satisfied than those who used them only when alone or not at all. It may not necessarily be the use of the vibrator alone that improves their satisfaction, but also the ability to share this with an open and understanding partner.

While doctors may suggest vibrator use for women who have difficulty climaxing or who have low libidos, they must also work to foster positive attitudes about the use, prevalence, and benefits of sex toys.


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A new study out of Indiana University suggests that most American adults think positively of vibrators. Along with vibrator use, this pro-sex-toy attitude was associated with high levels of sexual satisfaction and other measures of sexual function.

Researchers enlisted over 2,000 women and 1,000 men to take part in the online study. Participants were asked whether they agreed or disagreed with positive statements like, "[a vibrator] is a healthy part of many women's sex lives." They were also asked if they agreed with negative statements like, "[a vibrator] makes women too dependent on them for pleasure." Around 50% of participants "agreed" or "strongly agreed" with all positive beliefs about vibrators, while less than 10% harbored decidedly negative feelings.

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