When It Comes to Sex: Use It or Lose It
By Stacy Lloyd
Although male sexuality is very different from female sexuality, studies say that it turns out for both sexes, that you need to “use it or lose it.”
The advice from researchers for older men who want to preserve their sexual function is this. Have sex, and have it often, Huffington Post reported.
In a study that followed nearly 1,000 older Finnish men for five years, researchers found those who regularly had sex at the start of the study were at lower risk of developing erectile dysfunction (ED) by the study’s end, said Huffington Post.
“It’s what we in vascular surgery refer to as the ‘use it or lose it’ concept,” Dr. Hossein Sadeghi-Nejad, an associate professor of urology at New Jersey Medical School Hackensack University Medical Center told USNews.com.
“Sexual activity will promote maintenance of normal erectile function down the line.”
Women need to use it or lose it as well.
Women who have sex with themselves or a partner have better vaginal lubrication and elasticity of vaginal tissues than those who are abstaining, wrote FoxNews.com. More frequent sex also goes a long way in boosting a woman’s enjoyment of sex.
Some researchers believe that there’s a psychological component as well, said WebMD. People may stop wanting sex if they go a long time without it.
Sometimes this is true because people “turn off sex” to avoid feeling sexually frustrated. Having more frequent sex can actually maintain interest in sex.
Men and women may experience sexual changes as they age. WebMD advised that some changes may be the first sign of a medical problem.
So talk with a doctor about any concerning changes. He or she may be able to recommend treatments that will help.
Illness and side effects of medications can hinder sex, warned FoxNews.com. So be active, informed and communicate with your doctor about any medical conditions or medications that can hamper sexual intimacy.
People who have heart conditions can still enjoy full, satisfying sex lives, wrote WebMD. If arthritis is a problem, experiment with different positions. Women, use water-based vaginal lubricants to reduce vaginal dryness or irritation.
FoxNews.com advised staying physically healthy. Exercise and have a healthy diet. Don’t smoke, don’t abuse drugs or drink excessive amounts of alcohol.
Prescription medications that can enhance the sexual response are also available, said WebMD. Some people find herbs such as ginkgo biloba and ginseng enhance their sexual function.
But remember, both prescription drugs and herbal remedies carry the risk of side effects, so talk with a doctor.
What can people do now?
One researcher suggests the best predictor of later-in-life sexual activity is the amount you’re having at mid-life, wrote FoxNews.com.
So what better time to get started than right now?