We know, we know. It's hard to keep things intimate and exciting when you're in a long-term, monogamous relationship. You're comfortable. There's no real need to go out of your way to impress each other anymore. You might have even let your bedroom activity become stale and predictable. But there is good news: A new study says that if you start adding some variety to your sex life, you'll be just as sexually satisfied as you were during the first six months of your relationship.

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The study is one of the largest ever to examine what contributes to a satisfying sex life long-term, reports The Chicago Tribune. It looked at 38,747 married or cohabitating heterosexual couples who had been together three or more years, ranging in age from 18 to 65.

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Many of the couples had been together for two decades or more. "If properly nurtured, passion can last for decades," the study states. "Nearly two-thirds of sexually satisfied respondents reported that their sex lives now were as passionate as in their early days together. Over one-third of sexually satisfied men and women selected 'passionate' as the single best word (out of six) to describe their most recent sexual encounter."

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And what is the common thread for satisfied couples? It was the willingness to try new things. According to the study, nearly half of all satisfied and dissatisfied couples read sexual self-help books and articles, "But what set sexually satisfied couples apart was that they actually tried some of the ideas," said lead author David Frederick, assistant professor in health psychology at Chapman University.

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The satisfied men and women were more likely than the dissatisfied to say that yes, they spiced things up from time to time by doing things like trying a new position, acting out a sexual fantasy, or using sex toys. The data also revealed that sexually satisfied men and women gave and received more oral sex, had more consistent orgasms, and and engaged in more frequent sex.

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To all of these findings we say: Duh. If you're getting off all the time, of course you and your partner will be satisfied, and of course you'll want to keep satisfying each other over and over (and over) again. So if the passion in your partnership is starting to fizzle out, it's probably time to try something different in the bedroom. 

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