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The surprising health benefits of morning vs night sex

And what to do if you and your partner aren't on the same schedule.
March 2, 2021 1:30 p.m. EST
March 2, 2021 1:30 p.m. EST
Feet of couple side by side in bed Feet of couple side by side in bed

Whether you find yourself in the mood at night or in the wee hours of the morning, it turns out there are some great benefits to switching up your routine. Sexologist Jessica O'Reilly reveals the magic behind morning and night sex - and why you may even want to start scheduling it with your partner, especially if you aren't on the same schedule. 

Benefits of morning sex

Testosterone, relaxation and energy levels can be higher in the morning, so your body is primed for sex. So many of us have trouble getting in the mood, but the sleep cycle does the job for us and we just have to take advantage of it.

Endorphins released during (good) sex help to ensure that you’ll begin your day in the best of moods and a rise in oxytocin will help to maintain the connection with your partner throughout the day. It’s not uncommon for morning sex to lead to reduced tension and stress in your relationship as your body and mind reset after orgasm.

It makes practical sense. By the end of the day, you can be both emotionally and physically exhausted, so if you love sex, get it out of the way before breakfast and start the day on the right food.

Sex can even reduce stress and improve memory, so if you have a presentation coming up, sex can be the best preparatory medicine. 

Benefits of nighttime sex

Sex can lull you into a deep sleep, and there may be no relationship panacea better than a good night’s sleep. Couples who sleep well fight less, resolve conflict more effectively, seek connection more and are more empathetic and less aggressive. 

The cerebral cortex shuts off during orgasm and the cingulate cortex and the amygdala send messages to other parts of the brain signaling the need to quash all sexual desire. This results in the release of slumber-inducing chemicals like serotonin and opioids that lull you into a relaxed, drowsy state. 

Many people feel most connected in the evenings. They have a ritual to switch from parent mode to lover mode, so connecting before bed sets the mood for a good day the next day.

What to do if you and your partner aren't on the same schedule?

Take turns and experiment because you might surprise yourself. And remember that being spontaneously in the mood for sex isn’t necessarily better than cultivating the mood. So if you’re not in the mood at a specific time, let your partner know how to help you get in the mood, and even schedule it if you need to!