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Exploring the Diversity of Human Sexuality: Sex Stats by Country

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Human sexuality is a complex and multifaceted aspect of our lives, influenced by various factors such as culture, gender, and nationality. As the world becomes increasingly interconnected, the variety in sexual practices and preferences continues to expand. Numerous studies conducted over the years reveal the growing diversity in human sexuality.

In this article, we will delve into some intriguing findings about sexual practices and preferences across different regions, cultures, and sexual orientations. From gay women in Mumbai to straight men in Melbourne and married couples in Milan, we will explore the intimate experiences that make human sexuality so fascinating.

Sexual Practices Around the World

Research has shown that certain nations share not only geographic proximity and cultural similarities but also sexual practices. For example, the major English-speaking countries, including the UK, USA, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, are home to some of the most sexually adventurous individuals. These countries have a higher prevalence of blindfold and mask usage during sex, lubricant use, and vibrator usage compared to other nations. Additionally, the LGBT community is strongly represented in these countries, with a higher percentage of individuals having had a same-sex experience.

In contrast, Scandinavian countries such as Denmark, Iceland, Norway, and Finland, known for their high rankings on the World Happiness Index, also report high rates of extra-marital affairs and one-night stands. Meanwhile, countries like Greece, Chile, Italy, and Croatia are known for their affinity for anal sex.

Table 1: Anal Sex Statistics

Overall percentage tried anal sex (2022 YTD)40%
Men tried anal sex (2022 YTD)43%
Women tried anal sex (2022 YTD)37%
Average frequency of anal sex per month2.57 times
Pegging tried (2022 YTD)16.7%
Gay men tried anal sex85%
Gay men having anal sex regularly60%
Tried anal toys52.8%
Used anal toys or fingers on self52.8%
Very uncomfortable discussing anal sex1 out of 10
Country with highest prevalence of anal sexGreece (55%)
16-24-year-olds engaging in heterosexual anal intercourse28.5%

On the other end of the spectrum, Indians are less likely to engage in sexual experiences beyond "normal" intercourse, such as anal sex, threesomes, or the use of sexual aids. However, this does not necessarily translate to dissatisfaction; a significant percentage of Indians report being content with their sex lives.

Gender Differences in Sex Toy Usage

Sex toys have been a part of human sexuality for thousands of years, with the first known dildo predating the Bible by about 10,000 years. Both men and women enjoy using sex toys, but their preferences and habits differ significantly. Men are more likely to purchase fleshjacks, fleshlights, sex toy accessories, small condoms, and realistic sex dolls, while women tend to buy novelty gifts, Halloween costumes, body paint, plus-sized lingerie, and nipple tassels.

Masturbation and Sexual Fantasies

Masturbation is a common practice among both men and women, with a slightly higher percentage of men engaging in the act. Women are more likely to use a toy during masturbation, while men typically fantasize about oral sex. Women's fantasies often involve sex in romantic locations or unusual places.

More interesting global facts about sex:

  1. Australians Report the Highest Rate of Same-Sex Experiences
    Globally, only 12 percent of individuals report having intimate experiences with someone of the same gender. However, in Australia, this percentage increases to 22 percent, indicating a higher rate of same-sex experiences among Australians.
  2. Danish People Report Higher Instances of Infidelity
    Infidelity occurs across all cultures, but it seems that married Danish individuals report the highest percentage of extramarital affairs. Approximately 46 percent of married Danes admit to engaging in an affair, followed by 41 percent of Norwegians and 39 percent of Icelanders.
  3. Greeks Are Open to Anal Sex
    While anal sex might be considered taboo in some countries, more than half of the Greek population report having tried it. In fact, 55 percent of Greeks have experienced anal sex, compared to the global average of around one-third.
  4. Indians Express High Satisfaction with Their Sex Lives
    Despite two-thirds of Indian individuals reporting that they have never engaged in adventurous sexual activities (such as threesomes, anal sex, or sex toy usage), 61 percent of them describe themselves as "fully satisfied" with their sex lives. This suggests that sexual satisfaction doesn't necessarily require adventurous acts.
  5. English-Speaking Countries Show the Highest Interest in Sex Toys
    English-speaking countries not only report higher usage of lubricants but also show the most interest in sex toys. These countries have the highest search volume for sex toys on Google and exhibit a greater prevalence of vibrator usage.
  6. Scandinavians Have a Higher Frequency of One-Night Stands
    Globally, 44 percent of individuals have had a one-night stand. However, this percentage increases to two-thirds for people from Norway, Sweden, Denmark, and Finland, indicating a higher prevalence of one-night stands in Scandinavian countries.
  7. Kink is More Common in English-Speaking Countries
    While kink might be associated with certain countries like Germany or Japan, it is actually more prevalent in English-speaking countries. According to research, English speakers are more likely to use blindfolds or masks during sexual encounters than those from non-English speaking countries. Additionally, they report higher usage of lubricants and vibrators.

Promoting Safe and Healthy Sex

As the number of sexual partners and diversity in sexual practices increases, it is crucial to prioritize personal health and regularly test for sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Confidential medical services are available for a wide range of sexual health matters, including erectile dysfunction treatments, STI test kits, and treatments for conditions such as chlamydia and genital herpes.


Human sexuality is diverse and ever-evolving, reflecting the unique cultural, social, and individual factors that shape our lives. By understanding and respecting these differences, we can foster a more open and inclusive society that celebrates the rich tapestry of human experiences.

William H. McDaniel, MD

Dr. Robert H. Shmerling is the former clinical chief of the division of rheumatology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC), and is a current member of the corresponding faculty in medicine at Harvard Medical School.

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