Background: We describe the prevalence of ever and current use of sexual enrichment aids and of using drugs to enhance the sexual experience, and correlates of that usage.
Study Population: Participants in a random-digit dial survey conducted in the Seattle area between 2003 and 2004 among residents age 18 to 39 years of age with fluency in the English language.
Results: Use of sexual enrichment aids and drugs to enhance sexual experience during a typical 4-week period were reported by 27% and 13%, respectively, of participants. Among those reporting using a drug to enhance their sexual experience, the most commonly used drugs were alcohol (83.7%), marijuana (34.7%), ecstasy or “sextasy” (ecstasy combined with sildenafil) (8.2%), and sildenafil (7.5%). Persons reporting use of sexual enrichment aids and drugs to enhance sexual experience were more likely to engage in sexual behaviors associated with a higher risk of acquiring and transmitting a sexually transmitted infection (STI),such as having nonmonogamous partnerships and multiple partners in the previous 12 months and sexual repertoire.
Conclusion: Whether use of sexual enrichment aids and drugs to enhance sexual experience is causally associated with STI risk or merely an additional marker of high-risk behavior or sensation seeking cannot be discerned from a single cross-sectional survey. However, these behaviors occurred frequently, and usage was common across all age, gender, ethnic, sexual, and income groups. Further studies in STI and other populations are required.