INTRODUCTION: It was aimed to evaluate the effect of the Covid-19 pandemic on couples' sexual life and to investigate whether any difficulties were faced in supplying the proper counseling in family planning.
METHODS: Volunteers who attend to family medicine outpatient clinic were recruited in the study to complete a cross-sectional online survey. Participants were asked to sociodemographic characteristics, used family planning methods, difficulty in accessing the method, development of unplanned pregnancy, Covid infection of the spouses, and retrospectively report their sexual behavior frequency, desire, and relationship satisfaction during and before the pandemic. Then International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF), and the Female Sexual Function Index (FSFI) were administered.
RESULTS: A total of 195 volunteers whose mean age was 40±7.94 participated in the study. Difficulty in accessing family planning methods was 3.59%, and the unintended pregnancy rate was 57.14%. Sexual intercourse frequency was once a month or less for 17.95% and once a week or more for 67.18%. A decrease in sexual intercourse was observed in 33.33%. Erectile dysfunction was detected in 68.92%. Sexual dysfunction was found in 52.07% of the women. The mean FSFI score was 23.77 ± 8.27, while the median IIEF score was 60. The frequency of sexual intercourse, and change in sexual desire were not influenced by Covid-19 pandemic.
DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION: Sexual life in both genders was not regressed, but access to methods and counseling about family planning was negatively affected by Covid-19 pandemic. Moreover, unintended pregnancies were observed at higher rates even in a highly educated population during the Covid-19 pandemic.