Study: Christmas 'Baby Boom' Is Real
Many studies cite seasonal changes in human biology to explain the September increase in birth rates around the world – nine months after Christmastime in countries that celebrate the holiday. But a new study conducted by researchers at Indiana University and the Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência in Portugal suggests that the Christmas baby boom may be rooted in society, rather than biology.
For this study, which was published in Scientific Reports, researchers used online searches and social media posts to analyze the collective mood and behavior of people on a worldwide scale. The researchers gathered information about sex-related Google search terms from 2004 to 2014 and 10 percent of public Twitter posts from late 2010 to early 2014 from nearly 130 countries. They discovered that interest in sex peaks significantly during major cultural or religious celebrations and family-oriented holidays like Christmas in Christian countries and Eid-al-Fitr, which marks the end of Ramadan, in Muslim countries.