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Sexuality, Quality of Life and Life expectancy

Updated: Jan 17, 2020

Written by Dr. Serge Ginter

The National Survey of Midlife Development and a study by the University of Chicago showed that at age 55, men can expect another 15 years of sexual activity, but women that age only 11 years.

One consolation for women is that many of them seem not to miss it. Men sometimes marry younger women, die sooner and care more about sex, the study confirmed. Although 72 percent of aged men (75 – 85) have partners, fewer than 40 percent of women that age do.

Interest in sex, participation in sex and even the quality of sexual activity were higher for men than women, and this gender gap widened with age, said lead author Stacy Tessler Lindau and the study also affirms a positive association between later-life health, sexual partnership and sexual activity,"

Interesting also a new health measure, "sexually active life expectancy" or SALE, the average remaining years of sexually active life. For men, SALE is about ten years lower than total life expectancy and for women 20 years lower.

Sexuality remains vital throughout life, but sexual behavior is not accepted equally at all ages. Older people are challenged by age-related attitudes and perceptions that influence their sexual expression.

They are stereotyped as non-sexual beings who should not, can not and do not want to have sex. Expressing one's own sexuality or later engaging in sexual activity is seen by many in society as immoral or perverse.

Misunderstandings of the elderly also arise from ideals of beauty and the association of sex with reproduction. Unlike other areas of life, sexual quality of life (SQoL) has a negative relationship to old age.

Expanding our understanding of the relationship between aging and sexuality while SqoL (sexual quality of life) decreases with age, this decline is due to potentially modifiable factors such as the energy of thought and effort invested, especially in sexual aspects of life and the quality and frequency of sexual intercourse.

In fact age might be associated with acquiring skills that can alleviate age-related SQoL loss. The delineation of mechanisms involved in this change represents a challenging direction for future research because they could provide targets for clinical interventions to improve positive sexual experiences throughout life.

The findings highlight a place for sexuality as part of successful aging that aims to "give life to years" rather than adding years to life. The author concludes that sexually active life expectancy estimation is a new life expectancy tool than can be used for projecting public health this statement bears good news in the form of hope ...

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