WP 123 Trends and Patterns of Sexual Practices Among Adolescents and Adults Aged 14 59, United States

Tuesday, June 10, 2014
International Ballroom
Gui Liu, MPH, Divison of STD Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA, Susan Hariri, PhD, Division of STD Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA, Heather Bradley, PhD, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Division of STD Prevention, National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD and TB Prevention, Atlanta, GA, Sami L. Gottlieb, MD, MSPH, Geneva, Switzerland, Jami Leichliter, PhD, Division of STD Prevention, CDC, Atlanta, GA and Lauri Markowitz, MD, Division of STD Prevention, National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD and TB Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA

Background: To examine sexual behaviors among people aged 14–59 years in the United States.

Methods: Using data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys from 1999-2010, we analyzed: 1)trends in age at sexual initiation, number of sex partners, and same-sex partner report by 10-year birth cohorts among adults >30 years; and 2)patterns of sexual practices among participants ≤30 years. Estimates were adjusted for demographic factors prior to significance testing. Sex was defined as vaginal, oral, or anal.

Results: Adults born in more recent birth cohorts were younger at sexual debut than those born in previous periods (Ptrend<0.001); this trend was more pronounced among women. Among women born in 1940-49 and 1970-79, 6.6% and 15.1% reported sex before age 15. Among men born in 1940–49 and 1970-79, 14.9% and 18.6% reported sex before age 15. The percentage of adults reporting >10 lifetime partners increased in later birth cohorts, from 16.9% of women born in 1940–49 to 32.3% of in 1970–79; and from 41.2% of men born in 1940-49 to 48.7% in 1970-79. The percentage of women reporting ever having same-sex partners increased with successive cohorts, from 5.2% in 1940-49 to 9.4% in 1970-79 (Ptrend<0.001); this trend was not seen in men. Among participants aged 14, 16, and 20 years, 13.7%, 40.9%, and 84.1% reported ever having sex; with no difference between genders. There was no change by 2-year survey intervals from 1999-2010. Among sexually active 14 year-olds, 46.0% of males and 22.3% of females had ≥3 lifetime partners.

Conclusions: Among participants aged >30 years, age at sexual initiation decreased while number of sex partners increased in more recent birth cohorts, especially among females. Over the past decade, the percentage of participants aged ≤30 years reporting sexual activity by ages 14, 16, and 20 remained stable.