A new study has revealed that post-coital cuddles and kisses may be critical to relationship satisfaction. Couples who engage in hugs, affection and cuddling after sex report increased contentment within their relationships. While the spotlight is often on duration of sex and the intensity of orgasms, affection and intimacy may be far more important.

Longer cuddles make a happy relationship

If you spend a longer than average cuddling, talking and kissing after sex you can feel the benefits for months afterwards. Some couples say that they feel closer to their partner for up to three months after having prolonged cuddling after sex. It is so simple, yet in our faced paced world, often these gestures can be overlooked. Make the effort to spend some time hugging after sex and see how it can benefit your relationship. After-play is as important and foreplay and impacts on your sexual satisfaction equally.

Cuddle for the kids

Children pick up on the energy in relationships and feel when their parents are out of synch. While it is natural to ebb and flow in connection with your partner, it could be important to nurture your relationship. Show your kids that you feel affection for one another by hugging in front of them. Often parents have time for little else, especially sex, so on those occasions that you do find time for intimacy, make after-play a priority in your sex life. Your kids will feel your bond, making them feel happier too. Being a positive role model for your kids will influence the relationship choices that they make down the line.

Ditch the gender stereotypes 

There is a mistaken believe that men prefer sex and women prefer affection, but men benefit from after-play too. Men who engage in after-play not only report higher sexual satisfaction, but increased happiness in their relationships too. Let go of the misguided belief that men are satisfied with sex and sex alone, and move towards your partner for physical affection after sex.

While much of what this study reveals is something most of you know intuitively, having some scientific proof could encourage you to be more active in seeking affection and after-play. If you value your relationship and want to have a deeply satisfying relationship, it takes time, effort and commitment. Making sex and after-play as much of a priority as you do finances and parenting might make the difference between an adequate relationship and a deeply rewarding one.