Video: Is Casual Sex Unhealthy?

April 4, 2016 by Justin Lehmiller

“Trend pieces often say [casual sex] can be damaging and psychologically unhealthy, but science tells us that the truth is a little more complicated—and a lot more hopeful.”

In the popular media, casual sex is often portrayed in a negative light, with writers focusing largely on the physical and psychological risks of having it. But is this activity really so deserving of such a negative reputation? If you look at the research, what you’ll see is that casual sex isn’t an inherently bad or good thing. Instead, it turns out that casual sex is something that can affect different people in very different ways.

In the brief video below from our friends over at Science of Us, they explore some of the research demonstrating that the effects of casual sex are complicated. In particular, if you want to determine how casual sex is likely to affect someone, you need to look first at how they feel about the idea of having sex outside of a relationship in general.

To learn more about the psychology of casual sex, check out this article.

Watch more videos on the science of sex here.

Want to learn more about Sex and Psychology? Click here for previous articles or follow the blog on Facebook (, Twitter (@JustinLehmiller), or Reddit ( to receive updates.

Image Source:

You Might Also Like:

Post Featured Image
Written by
Dr. Justin Lehmiller
Founder & Owner of Sex and Psychology

Dr. Justin Lehmiller is a social psychologist and Research Fellow at The Kinsey Institute. He runs the Sex and Psychology blog and podcast and is author of the popular book Tell Me What You Want. Dr. Lehmiller is an award-winning educator, and a prolific researcher who has published more than 50 academic works.

Read full bio >