Male Sexuality and Aging
How can one maintain a satisfying sex life? A question often asked but with no clear and easy answers.
Obviously, no simple answer will do. It is not, for one thing, a matter for you alone but for your partner as well. You should be reassured by the fact that recent studies of aging lovers report a wide variation in the frequency and the kinds of sexual experience sought by older people. "Normal" appears to be everything from holding hands at midnight to active sexual intercourse.
Perhaps the best general advice is to forget all the jokes you've ever heard about frustrated old men. If you know that certain gradual changes will occur, you are less likely to worry.
Remember that in older men:
- It takes longer to get an erection and the penis may require direct stimulation before the erection occurs.
- Longer periods of stimulation are needed to reach orgasm.
- The force and volume of the ejaculation diminishes.
- After ejaculation, the refractory period increases. A late middle-aged or older man may need from 12 to 24 hours or longer before another erection is possible.
If a man is not ill and does not suffer from psychological blocks his ability to have an erection will not be impaired by age. However, certain factors can cause a transitory loss of function. These include:
Therapeutic drugs: Medications such as tranquilizers, high blood-pressure drugs, and antidepressants can interfere with sexual function. Check your doctor to f ind out about side effects of any drugs you are taking.
Alcohol: Alcohol, being a depressant, can numb the senses and cause temporary impotence.
The psychoactive drugs: marijuana, LSD, cocaine, and others that are sometimes taken to heighten sexual experience can interfere with erection in men and orgasm in both men and women.
Mental stress: A man preoccupied with problems at work or problems in his relationships may lose both the desire for sex and the ability to attain an erection.
Physical fatigue: Physical activity in a well-conditioned man does not interfere with sexual interest. However, unaccustomed physical activity for the out of condition older man can cause loss of sexual responsiveness for 24 to 48 hours.
A man's general vitality and continuing sexual activity in middle age seems to be the most important indicators of what his sex life will be like in later years. The man aged 40 to 60 who engages in sex an a regular basis is most likely to have a satisfying sex life after 60.
Remember sexual activity is a complex situation with multple factors involved. We will try to answer all of your questions about your situation.
Reprinted with permission from Dialog Medical, DialogMedical.com.
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