In Good Odour: Keen Sense of Smell Linked to Better Sex Life in New Study

© Photo : Kate Moyles Intimacy
Intimacy - Sputnik International, 1920, 10.02.2022
The sense of smell rarely makes an appearance in studies on sexual behaviour, yet it can be a factor in sexual well-being nonetheless, researchers have concluded.
A sharp sense of smell has been identified as a comfort factor in intimate relationships that strengthens attachment while also contributing to fidelity in a novel study by Stockholm University.
The research that has taken place over a period of four years at Stockholm University indicated that those who see themselves as having a good sense of smell tend to have a better sexual well-being.

“I believe smell has an incredible effect on attraction and there is not much research on it, so here was work to do,” Anna Blomkvist, who has a doctorate in psychology from Stockholm University, told national broadcaster SVT, stressing that smell “means a lot in close relationships”.

Those who have a more secure attachment to their partner tend to get milder stress reactions when they smell their partner's body scent than those with a less secure attachment, an effect labelled “comfort smelling”. Smell also plays a poignant role in romantic relationships.

“Sex and living together are not only affected by hearing, sight and touch, but also the sense of smell affect, as a holistic perception. It could be because the person who has a better sense of smell is also more present in the relationship and picks up more signs from his partner,” Blomkvist said in a statement.

Remarkably, the research also suggested that a sense of smell may play a role in one's fidelity.
Lastly, the fact that smell affects intimate relationships could be important for those who have lost their sense of smell, for instance due to COVID-19.
“A lost sense of smell can also affect close relationships, through everything from eating behaviours, social support and sexual behaviours,” Blomkvist concluded.
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