For Great Sex in Your Senior Years Stay Healthy

Monday, 29 Jul 2013 09:10 AM

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When she was in her 80s, the actress Jessica Tandy (married to actor Hume Cronyn) was asked by a young female reporter, "At what age did you stop having sex?" She smiled and replied, "I'll let you know."

Here's some general biology. Around age 50-60, women may find that they have a slower response time, vaginal dryness and weaker orgasms because of decreasing hormone levels, lack of muscle tone, obesity, chronic pain, medications, surgery or emotional circumstances.

And starting around age 50, men may take longer to have an erection, and have weaker erections and a longer refractory time for those same reasons. Fortunately, there are solutions:

Women: Topical estrogen can strengthen vaginal tissue, decrease intercourse pain and increase lubrication. Water-based lubricants also are helpful.

Men: Erectile dysfunction medications can help with weak erections and slow arousal. Talk to your doc to see if they're for you.

Women and Men: Healthful food choices, regular physical activity, managing stress and avoiding tobacco reduce bodywide inflammation.

If you want good orgasms at 85 (or younger), it's vital to make sure you have low levels of inflammation at 58! Doing exercises (Kegels) to strengthen vaginal and pelvic muscles can increase responsiveness. If you can stop your flow of urine with your muscle contractions, you're doing them right!

Creative intimacy is also important: There are a lot of satisfying ways to stimulate one another and express your sexual feelings, so experiment. And don't settle: Talk to your partner and your doctor to find ways to express your passions.

© King Features Syndicate

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