So how is your sex life? How much has it changed over the years? What is sex really like for those over 40, or for those in their 50s, 60s and even 70s? While sex certainly doesn’t stop as you age, it may change. There is no reason that intimacy and sex cannot be enjoyed at the same level of intensity that it was when you were younger.
Sex after the age of forty or fifty can be freeing because you do not have the same cares and concerns you might have had when you were younger. Those over the age of 40 or 50 also tend to have much more confidence that is very appealing to a partner. Each of us must learn to appreciate all of our beautiful qualities no matter what age we are because our age does not define us.
Some things that might change as we age include:
- Sexual desire
- Changes in hormone levels for men and women
- More confidence
- Fewer worries about unwanted pregnancies
The biggest change you might experience is a loss of sexual desire caused by a change in your hormonal levels as you age. Women might struggle with vaginal dryness, making it more difficult to enjoy sex because of a lack of natural lubrication. Men, on the other hand, may find that they have more issues related to ED (erectile dysfunction) because of lower testosterone levels.
According to Shannon Chavez, a licensed psychologist:
“Both men and women deal with hormone changes in their 40s that can cause changes in sexual arousal, desire, and general physical comfort during sexual activity.”
Chavez, who is also a certified sex therapist also states:
“Changes in hormones may require an increase in stimulation during sexual activity or increased focus on sensual pleasuring in order to get aroused.”
Hormones definitely change the way you experience sex as you age, especially for women according to Chavez.
Thanks to estrogen levels that tend to fluctuate and menstrual periods that may or may not be regular, sex can cause a bit of discomfort for women as they age. This may occur because of a thinning vaginal wall which can be more easily aggravated.
The best cure for this is to invest in a good lubrication product or by using a doctor recommend estrogen cream applied to the area to help with dryness.
Erectile issues may crop up more and more for men as they age. Experts suggest striving for lifestyle changes first, before using ED drugs such as Viagra or Cialis. Lifestyle changes include things like exercise and a diet rich in flavonoids such as blueberries, red wine, and radishes to help decrease the risk of erectile dysfunction.
Other Forms of Intimacy
As you age, you may also enjoy other types of intimacy other than intercourse. This is also a good time to focus on pleasure and ways to connect with your partner. It’s not always about the sex, it’s really more about the love and the connection you feel. Sex, as you get older, is a lot like taking the time to really enjoy a gourmet meal. You don’t have to rush through it. You can take your time and enjoy each course that comes along.
Many people in their 40s and 50s may also have more time to spend with their partners. You are typically beyond the raising babies stage so you aren’t as immersed in daily activities that take up a lot of time and patience.
According to data published in JAMA Internal Medicine, 85% of women over the age of 40 are still having sex and they consider sex as something that is highly important. While great sex may take a little more effort as you age, it’s still really important. This time in life is a great time to explore and to plan romantic getaways or date nights, as a way to keep the home fires burning.
Debunking the Myths
According to research done at Harvard Health, it’s important to debunk the myths that we hear as we get older.
Some of the most widely heard myths about sexuality and aging include:
- Only the young are sexually attractive
- Sex later in life is undignified
- Men and women lose the ability to perform after a certain age
- Sex is boring
All you have to do is take a look at some of the aging celebrities and you will quickly see that getting older can be quite sexy and alluring. We live in a culture that celebrates youth, but the fact of the matter is that older people can be downright sexy too. The same attributes that made you feel sexy years ago are still with you today and most likely still just as appealing. For example, you probably still have those gorgeous soulful eyes or that quirky smile, and those things aren’t going to disappear as you age.
A survey done in 1999 conducted by AARP and Modern Maturity magazine showed that those over 45 still considered their partners physically attractive as they age.
The second myth is all about being dignified. The truth is that sex is healthy for you, no matter what age. People are living longer and stronger and sex is something that can still be celebrated and enjoyed no matter what your age. Losing your ability to perform after a certain age may be a factor, but you can take steps to work around this. For starters, you can keep your body healthy and active. You can also play around with lubricants and have more fun.
For men, there is a multitude of ED products that can be helpful, and with a little medical intervention, you can be good to go.
The same thing applies to women. There are many products available over the counter and by prescription that can help make sex a more enjoyable experience as you age.Sex doesn’t have to be boring either. Sex with a long-term partner may actually be more fun because you are way beyond feeling embarrassed to try something new.
Many women find they have even more sexual confidence as they age, in comparison to how they felt in their younger years. Getting in touch with your sensuality and sexuality can help you gain more energy and vitality, radiate healthfulness, feel more joy and help you make deeper connections with those you love.Sex might even help you feel more attractive, and help you become more creative, inspired and productive.
You can embrace sex at any age and doing so may, in fact, be a key factor when it comes to helping you stay healthy and vibrant.