Seniors, when it comes to sex, your either use it or lose it, says a noted sex educator.
“Sex is good for you,” says Dr. Judy Kuriansky, a noted sex educator and author of “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to a Healthy Relationship” and “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Tantric Sex.”
“You should continue to have good sex for the same reason you should continue to get good exercise. It’s taking care of yourself,” she adds.
Walter M. Bortz II, M.D. author of” We Love Too Short and Die Too Young,” says in an article for Webmd.com that the sexual stereotype for older folks is wrong and pessismistic.
“The reality is that older people are a lot sexier than younger people think. The common notion is that when you are old you don’t — and maybe shouldn’t– have sex. Our studies have shown that older people are sexier in attitude and performance than they have been credited for.
In fact, John Morley, M.D. Director of the division of geriatric medicine at St. Louis University says: “You must realize that in the U.S. the biggest use of prostitutes is on the day Social Security checks come out.”
The experts do point out that sex for seniors isn’t the same as for young people. The good news is that that the focus is no longer on procreation but recreation, allowing a broader range of sexual possibilities. You can still enjoy sex, but you may have to put a little more thought and planning into it than when you were younger.
Here are six tips to liven your libido:
1. Get regular exercise. Lovemaking may be leisurely but it does command some stamina. Getting in shape can rev up your sex life. Strength training exercises can help you avoid injury during sex, and the physical activity can stimulate arousal.
2. Try something new. When you’ve had the same partner for a long time you may want to add some variety to your sex life. It can be something as simple as changing the time of day you have sex or taking it out of the bedroom into a more romantic setting. Try a his-and-her massage to help set the stage.
3. Think beyond intercourse. There are so many options to spectacular sex, says Kuriansky. Even sensual kissing can bring you pleasure. Try sensual massages or sex toys to spice up your sex life.
4. Mind your medications. Very often seniors take medication that can cause problems in the bedroom. Some culprits are antidepressants, antihistamines, blood pressure medicine, cholesterol lowering drugs and ulcer medications. Talk to your doctor about your options.
5. Communicate. Very often older folks lose their self-esteem and are worried that their partner doesn’t find them attractive or sexy anymore. Talk things over with friends, too, who can share their stories. “One of the problems with people who are now older is that there is even less talk about sex than there was before,” she notes.
6. Ask if hormone therapy is right for you. The FDA estimates that there are about 5 million men in the U.S. with low testosterone levels. Bortz notes that the first stage of intercourse is desire, an emotion driven by hormones. Both men and women may benefit from hormones to boost flagging desire. It’s something that you and your health care practitioner should determine.
“If a grandfather clock stops running, your choices are to junk it, fix it, or wind it up,” says Bortz. “Aging isn’t a disease. Do you feel used up? Well, you could give up. Or you could fix it and wind back up. My main contribution is that most of what we think is aging is disuse. And that applies strongly to sexuality.”
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