The Importance of Addressing Aging and Sexuality

By Roz Jones

Sex is a subject that often gets pushed to the sidelines, especially when it comes to talking about aging and older adults. Too many caregivers and aging loved ones avoid discussing sexuality as part of the aging process, leaving those involved in the dark. This is a disservice to the individuals involved—it is essential for those caring for or living with an aging person to talk about and understand their sexual needs. 

The Impact of Age on Sexuality 

Aging has a direct effect on an individual’s sexuality. As we age, our bodies go through various changes that can affect our sex drive and performance. For example, hormone levels decrease with age in both men and women, which can lead to decreased libido and arousal. Physical mobility can also be impacted by aging, leading to difficulty feeling comfortable or engaging in certain positions during sexual intercourse or other activities. 

In addition, the emotional aspect of sexuality can be affected by age-related factors such as stress, depression, anxiety, relationship issues (or lack thereof), parenting responsibilities, job pressures etc., all of which may reduce desire or make initiating or engaging in sex difficult. It’s important to take into consideration any underlying physical or psychological conditions that may be influencing your loved one’s sexuality – such as chronic pain or diabetes – before trying to address these issues head-on. 

It is also important not to forget how loneliness affects people of all ages but particularly older adults who may have lost friends and family members over time due to natural life circumstances; this creates an added layer of vulnerability for your loved one when it comes to talking about sexuality openly.  

How Caregivers Can Help 

Caregivers should approach conversations around aging and sexuality from a place of understanding rather than judgment so that their loved one feels comfortable enough to open up about their feelings and concerns in this area. Be sure not to push them into anything they are not ready for; instead provide guidance on options for addressing any issues they might have related to sex as they age (such as physical therapy if mobility limitations are an issue). If needed, work together with your health care provider(s) on finding solutions that best suit your individual situation. 

Overall, it is vital for caregivers and aging loved ones alike to recognize the importance of talking openly about sexuality while navigating the challenges associated with growing older. Doing so will help ensure that everyone involved is better equipped to address any issues related to sex while also creating a safe environment where individuals feel comfortable expressing themselves without fear of judgment or shame. Whether you are caring for someone yourself or they are receiving professional care from another source, being proactive in this area will go a long way towards helping them maintain their quality of life now and into their later years.

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Has your aging loved one told you they have everything in order regarding the next steps for their life? Are you clueless about what the next steps are in your aging loved one’s life? Check out the latest episode of The Caregiver Cafe Podcast to learn how one can have life in order to enable their caregivers have a smooth ride as they support them through life!

As you gracefully age, it is important for you to put everything in order so you do not leave your loved ones clueless about what the next steps are.

In this episode, I speak to Darra Wray about how one can have life in order to enable their caregivers  have a smooth ride as they support them throughout life.


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1. YOU ARE NOT ALONE: The problems you face as a caregiver are experienced by other caregivers. Knowing that you’re not alone can be comforting. 

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