Sexuality is a part of life. As we age, some people think that sexuality disappears—but does it really have to?
Of course not! Despite aging, it is possible to maintain an active and enjoyable sex life. Sex after 60 is a real thing!
Physical changes with aging
Many physical changes can affect sexuality as we age. Aging can lead to a decrease in energy and stamina, but its effects also vary greatly depending on hormones.
With the hormonal changes caused by menopause, women may experience a decrease in vaginal lubrication. As a result, sexual relations can become unpleasant and even painful. Many women prefer to avoid penetration for fear of pain. However, there are solutions to avoid the pain caused by vaginal dryness. A consultation with a healthcare professional can help.
On the male side, there are also hormonal changes. Men also have their "menopause," known as andropause. It causes a decrease in testosterone levels, which can lead to less intense erections and a longer time to reach orgasm.
Certain medications can be prescribed to alleviate sexual dysfunctions. However, it is important to keep in mind that even with medication, desire must be present. Medication can help address physical problems, but it cannot solve a couple's problems. If you suffer from erectile dysfunction, talk to your healthcare professional.
What about the medication?
Few seniors are drug-free. Medication can affect sexuality. Some drugs can decrease libido, while others can make erections or ejaculation more difficult. Your pharmacist is the medication specialist, so don't hesitate to ask him or her if you think medication may be affecting your sex life.
Good health habits are good for you
And for your sexual health! In order to maintain an active and fulfilling sexual life, consider changing certain lifestyle habits.
- Quit smoking. We can't say it enough. In addition to all the harm cigarettes can do, they can also affect sexual health by making erections more difficult and affecting vaginal lubrication.
- Limit alcohol consumption. Moderation tastes much better.
- Eat healthy and maintain a optimal weight.
- Exercise regularly. You don't have to run a marathon; walking can do the trick. Before including physical activities, discuss them with your doctor.
- Take care of your mental health. Depression and anxiety can interfere with the sex lives of those who suffer from them and their partners.
In addition to taking care of your body, you need to be mindful of your relationship. The basis of a healthy sexuality is a healthy couple. Desire is a key element of sexuality.
The many different forms of sex
Sex is not synonymous with penetration. It is possible to have a satisfying sexual experience with your partner without necessarily going through penetration. This is especially important for women who are experiencing vaginal problems due to aging.
Shifting the focus away from genitalia can be a solution. Use your imagination and try to reinvent your sexuality with other tender gestures. You may be more satisfied.
Communication with your spouse is extremely important. Share your emotions, fears and desires.
Although rates are higher among young people, sexually transmitted and blood-borne infections (STBBIs) occur at all ages.
Just because the risk of pregnancy no longer exists in post-menopausal women does not mean that they should stop using protection. Condoms are not only used to prevent pregnancy, but they are also the best protection against STIs after abstinence.
Sex in retirement is possible and enjoyable!
If you are concerned about your sex life, don't hesitate to discuss it with a healthcare professional. As with any other health issue, they will listen to your needs with discretion and empathy.