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Sex Med. 2015 Oct 5;3(4):235-43. doi: 10.1002/sm2.74. eCollection 2015 Dec.

Postcoital Dysphoria: Prevalence and Psychological Correlates.

Author information

1
School of Psychology and Counselling Queensland University of Technology Kelvin Grove Queensland Australia.
2
Department of Psychology University of Zurich Zurich Switzerland.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

While problems related to desire, arousal, and orgasm have been subject to extensive epidemiologic research, women's postcoital reactions and feelings, and postcoital dysphoria (PCD) remains under-researched.

AIM:

The study examined the association between women's attachment anxiety and avoidance, differentiation of self, and the experience of PCD symptoms.

METHODS:

Two hundred and thirty female university students completed an online survey.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

The Female Sexual Function Index, the Experiences in Close Relationships Scale, the Differentiation of Self Inventory-Revised, and study specific questions.

RESULTS:

Forty-six percent of respondents reported experiencing PCD symptoms at least once in their lifetime with 5.1% experiencing PCD symptoms a few times within the past 4 weeks. A small but significant inverse correlation was found between lifetime prevalence of PCD and sexual functioning (r = -0.16). While the regression model accounted for 22% of variance in lifetime prevalence of PCD, attachment and differentiation of self variables did not account for significant variance.

CONCLUSIONS:

The findings confirm that PCD is under-recognized and under-researched. There appears to be no relationship between PCD and intimacy in close relationships. Further research is necessary to understand the subjective experience of PCD and to inform the development of a reliable measure. Schweitzer RD, O'Brien J, and Burri A. Postcoital dysphoria: Prevalence and psychological correlates. Sex Med 2015;3:229-237.

KEYWORDS:

Anxiety; Attachment; Differentiation of Self; FSD; Postcoital Dysphoria; Sexual Problems

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