By Charles Hymas / telegraph.co.uk

According to studies the proportion who say they have not had a non-romantic sexual encounter in the past year has risen from 11.7 percent to 15.2 percent. For men aged 18 to 24, it rose from 18.9 percent to 30.9 percent Credit: Ina FASSBENDER/AFP via Getty Image

Young men are giving up sex to play video games, a study has found. The US-based research found that computer gaming by men in their early 20s explained a quarter of the decline in their propensity to have casual sex.

The size of the decline was on a par with the current young generation’s growing distaste for drinking as an explanation as to why casual sex is becoming less common among people in their 20s, according to the study of 2,000 young men and women aged 20 to 24. 

The researchers from the State University of New York and Rutgers University used regressive analysis to try to understand why today’s youngsters are spurning casual sex.

According to studies the proportion who say they have not had a non-romantic sexual encounter in the past year has risen from 11.7 per cent to 15.2 per cent. For men aged 18 to 24, it rose from 18.9 per cent to 30.9 per cent.

For women, the biggest factor explaining the decline in their casual sex lives was drinking, which accounted for a quarter of the drop. According to the researchers, no other factor stood out or was statistically significant.

For the men, however, of the key aspects of their lives which appeared to be having an effect, the largest was drinking followed by gaming.

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