Older couple with water in the background

Why Sex Matters For Your Health- And What To Do If You Just Can’t Perform Anymore.





A good sex life is more important to your health than you may realize. Sex can have physical benefits such as reducing the risk of heart disease, lowering blood pressure, burning calories, increasing heart health, strengthening muscles, and boosting the immune system. Psychologically, sex can help reduce stress and anxiety, boost self-esteem, improve mood, and enhance intimacy. Socially, sex can help people connect with their partners and develop relationships. For those already in a relationship, sex is important for maintaining intimacy and closeness between partners.

As we age, our bodies change and our sexual desires, stamina, and ability to perform may change as well. However, sex should remain an important aspect of health throughout your life, and this doesn’t change for older adults. Studies have shown that frequent sexual activity is associated with enhanced memory among older adults. People who have sex as they age tend to be happier and healthier than those who don’t.

Unfortunately, on average, people are having sex less. Much of this has to do with the aging of our population. Baby Boomers are now older adults, and their population bubble has pushed the median age higher. According to an analysis of the General Social Survey, the average American adult went from having sex over 60 times a year 20 years ago to around 50 times in 2018. The percentage of people having sex regularly varies by age group. Younger adults, predictably, have more frequent sex. For example, Americans in their 20s have sex about 80 times per year while that number drops to 20 times per year for those in their 60s. This is unfortunate for those who are older, given the physical, emotional, psychological, and social benefits of sex. Sex for older couples doesn’t have to be strenuous to reap the benefits for your health. 

There has also been a smaller decline in sex frequency among the young, due to changing social patterns and the manifestation of the so-called “aging” diseases amongst younger people- like obesity, thyroid conditions, diabetes, heart disease, etc. These systemic health problems can impact your ability to have and enjoy sex. Erectile dysfunction, inability to achieve an orgasm, or lack of libido can be common problems among all ages.

If you aren’t having sex and want to get back into it, there are many ways to do so. You should start by talking to your doctor about any medical issues that may be affecting your sex drive. You can talk to your partner about trying new things, or explore your sexuality through masturbation. If you don’t have a partner, try traditional dating or using online dating services to meet new people, and explore your sexual desires.

According to the National Institute on Aging, sexuality and intimacy are important aspects of life for many older adults. Sexuality involves feelings, desires, actions, and identity, and can include many different types of physical touch or stimulation. Intimacy is a feeling of closeness and connectedness in a relationship that can occur with or without a physical component. Aging brings life transitions that can create opportunities for older adults to redefine what sexuality and intimacy mean to them. Some older adults strive for both a sexual and intimate relationship, some are content with one without the other, and still others may choose to avoid these types of connections.

Many older couples find greater satisfaction in their sex lives than they did when they were younger. They may have fewer distractions, more time and privacy, and no worries about getting pregnant. They also may be better able to express what they want and need, which can offer an opportunity for greater intimacy and connection.

Normal aging also brings physical changes that can sometimes interfere with the ability to have and enjoy sex. Health conditions can cause physical problems, along with stress and worry, that can get in the way of intimacy or enjoying a fulfilling sex life.

Testosterone levels naturally decrease as men age, and this can lead to a decrease in libido and an increased risk of erectile dysfunction. Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) is a treatment option for men with low testosterone levels. According to a review article published in Nature, TRT can improve sexual desire, erectile function, and overall health. It’s important to talk to a knowledgeable doctor who has experience with TRT to explore the potential risks and benefits of TRT before starting treatment.

Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections have been used as an experimental treatment for erectile dysfunction. A 2020 review of available research on PRP therapy for male sexual dysfunction concluded that PRP has the potential to be a useful treatment option for ED.

Shockwave therapy is another non-invasive treatment option for erectile dysfunction. It involves applying mild shock waves to the penile shaft and can provide moderate improvement in patients with ED from varying causes, including vascular, neurogenic, and procedural. It can also benefit patients for whom previous medical therapies were not effective.


Several natural remedies have been suggested for the treatment of erectile dysfunction (ED). It is important to note that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved any over-the-counter products for ED.

Some natural remedies that have been suggested for ED include:

 Make sure to speak with a doctor well-versed in natural medicine before trying any natural remedies for ED, as some can cause side effects or interact with other medications.


As women age and go through menopause, they may experience a decrease in estrogen levels which can lead to vaginal dryness and make intercourse uncomfortable or even painful. More than a third of women in perimenopause or who are postmenopausal report having sexual difficulties, from lack of interest in sex to trouble having an orgasm4. To help alleviate these symptoms, women can use vaginal lubricants or moisturizers, engage in more direct stimulation, or try hormone therapy under the guidance of a healthcare professional

Bioidentical hormone therapy (BHT) is a type of hormone replacement therapy that uses hormones that are chemically identical to those produced by the human body. BHT is often used to treat symptoms of menopause, including vaginal dryness, low libido, and difficulty achieving orgasm. According to the National Institute on Aging, hormone therapy can help relieve some of the symptoms of menopause, including vaginal dryness and discomfort during sex. Estrogen therapy is the most effective treatment for these symptoms and can be administered in several forms, including pills, patches, gels, and vaginal creams or rings.

Several common health conditions can interfere with a person’s sex life. Some of these conditions include:

  • Diabetes: High blood sugar can damage blood vessels and nerves over time, which can hinder blood flow to the sex organs. This can cause problems such as erectile dysfunction, loss of desire, vaginal dryness, painful intercourse, and difficulty achieving orgasm.
  • Heart Disease: Like diabetes, heart disease can cause blood vessel damage that can lead to sexual problems. Some medications for high blood pressure can also cause issues.
  • Depression: Depression can cause a drop in sex drive and affect sexual function. Some antidepressants can also have sexual side effects.
  • Chronic Pain: Chronic pain can make it difficult to think about or engage in sex. Some pain medications can also have sexual side effects.
  • Arthritis: Sore joints and other arthritis symptoms can make sex uncomfortable or difficult.


Talking to your partner about sexual difficulties can be challenging, but it is an important step in addressing the issue and improving your relationship. Here are some tips that may help you have a productive conversation with your partner about sexual difficulties:

  1. Admit your discomfort: If you feel anxious or uncomfortable talking about sexual difficulties, let your partner know. Sharing your concerns can help you start the conversation and make it easier to discuss the issue.
  2. Set aside time to talk: Choose a time when you and your partner can talk without distractions or interruptions. Avoid having the conversation during sex or when either of you is feeling stressed or upset.
  3. Be specific: When discussing your concerns, try to be specific about what is bothering you and what you would like to change. This can help your partner understand the issue and work with you to find a solution.
  4. Listen to your partner: It is important to listen to your partner’s perspective and try to understand their feelings and concerns. This can help you work together to find a solution that works for both of you.
  5. Be open-minded: Be open to trying new things and exploring different ways of addressing the issue. This can help you find a solution that works for both of you.

Remember, communication is key in any relationship, and talking openly and honestly about sexual difficulties can help bring you closer together and improve your sexual fulfillment.

There are reasons why sex can make us feel happy and fulfilled. According to Healthline, a lot is going on in the body during sex that makes it feel good. These feelings of pleasure belong to a series of physical and emotional stages that you experience when you’re having sex or feeling aroused. The four stages of the so-called sexual response cycle include excitement, plateau, orgasm, and resolution. During these stages, the body experiences increased muscle tension, heart rate, and breathing, as well as increased blood flow to the genitals and other physical changes, including flooding of the body with pleasure-stimulating hormones.

In addition to the physical pleasure of sex, being physically close to another person can increase levels of oxytocin — the “cuddle hormone” — in the brain, making you feel happy and safe. According to Forbes, recent research suggests that the real reason sex promotes happiness has little to do with the sex itself, but rather with the affection that it can create. By this logic, sex itself is hugely enjoyable and starts a cascade of happy feelings, and these feelings serve to bind people together not just in the moments after sex, but for hours and days later. In other words, it’s the ultimate pair-bonding glue. Other research has demonstrated how hormones produced during kissing and sex can “interlock” with those of your partner and cause both of you to crave more physical interaction with each other. 

Sex has been linked to better mental and physical wellness among those who are older specifically. A study in the Journal of Health and Social Behavior found that women who have satisfying sex later on in life might have a lower risk of high blood pressure. Orgasms have consistently been linked to anxiety reduction and better mental health. Sex can also have physical benefits such as lowering blood pressure, burning calories, increasing heart health, strengthening muscles, reducing the risk of heart disease, stroke, and hypertension, increasing libido, and improving immune system function.


Establishing even a modicum of sex back in your life, or increasing that which you already enjoy can make you healthier and happier. If problems like ED, low libido, inability to orgasm, vaginal dryness, or any other sexual issue is preventing you from having a satisfying sex life, come visit us at Progressive Medical Center. We are experts at getting at the root causes of the problem.  Let our experts in sexual health help restore your sexual function and create a happier you!