Image: iStock/shevtsovy Image: iStock/shevtsovy

We hear a lot about sexting in the media these days, and it's fair to say that most of it is negative. The papers love to report stories about how people have seen their naked photos shared to their entire list of contacts after former partners decided to take revenge.

However, as a result of all this bad publicity, the chances are that you haven't considered how useful sexting could be as a form of foreplay - and how you might be missing out if you haven't given it a try.

Psychosexual and relationship therapist Kate Moyle said in an interview with Elite Daily that sexting can help to raise levels of anticipation about sex before a couple is physically together, meaning you're both raring to go when you do finally meet up.

"Encouraging your partner to use their imagination can be really sexy," she added.

However, using technology as a form of foreplay should be about more than simply sending a dick pic or a shot of your bare breasts and hoping it hits the sweet spot.

Clinical sexologist (because that is apparently a real job title) Dr Dawn Michael told the publication that you should act over a sext as you would in the bedroom.

"[Talk] about how you may want to touch your partner sensually, kiss them, massage them, or how much they turn you on. You don't have to be explicit with your text either. Be less graphic and more sensual," she recommended.

Compliments about their body, talking about how you're longing to be with them and what you'd like them to do to you should all go down well in terms of raising those levels of excitement, for instance.

It could also be an opportunity to express new things you both might like to try if you tend to be a bit reticent face-to-face and haven't suggested it for real in the bedroom yet.

However, a few words of advice: test the water first and make sure the person you want to sext would be receptive to any such content coming from you. You might also want to pick an appropriate time - not, for example, when they're in an important board meeting trying to put this month's sales figures to their boss.

And always, always make sure you tap that message over to the right person in your contacts. When you've got multiple conversations on your phone, it's all too easy to open up the wrong thread. And you really wouldn't want that kind of stuff going to your mum.

According to a previous poll carried out by Elite Daily, 56 per cent of people said they mostly still use text as a medium for sexting, while the second most popular channel was SnapChat.

Showing how times have changed since Sex and the City, almost half of respondents said they would never have sex over a voice call.