by Ellen Blake
Performance issues can be very upsetting for men over 50. You are not alone.
Landmark studies by University of Chicago researchers found that one third of men aged 50 to 64 suffer from ED. That figure jumps to approximately 44 percent for the 65 to 85 age group. (So while ED is quite common in older men, more than half never develop it.) Men and their partners seem confused about why or how this happens. The issue is an extremely personal one and most men don’t like to talk about it.
Did you know most men who believe they have erectile dysfunction (ED) don’t actually have ED? More likely what they have is erectile dissatisfaction. It’s important to understand the difference because the treatment is not the same. As men age, erection changes are normal and inevitable. This means that though getting and maintaining an erection has become more difficult and is more frustrating than it once was, but it’s not impossible. However, it is frustrating and anxiety about performance issues can make the situation worse.
Decreasing testosterone levels is a major contributing factor in erectile issues in older men. Chronic pain, arthritis, obesity and neurological issues can also interfere with the 50+ erection, as do certain medications such as those taken for hypertension or depression. Anxiety, alcohol, relationship problems and trying to make love when tired may further exacerbate the problems in the bedroom.
Anxiety is particularly problematic. This emotion triggers the fight-or-flight reflex that sends blood away from the central body, including the penis, and out to the limbs for self-defense or escape. The result is less blood is available for an erection. Try to accept erectile dissatisfaction. It’s normal. When you become anxious about it, erections become less likely.
Are you willing to make some lifestyle changes to help improve your sex life?
Some lifestyle factors can postpone or even temporarily reverse the issue: falling madly in love, taking steps to improve your health such as weight loss, regular exercise and making love earlier in the day when you have more energy. If you suffer from anxiety, you might try a hot shower before sex often helps. During lovemaking, keeping a slow pace and taking deep meditative breaths can be calming. Slow sensual touch all over, the kind of sex most women say they prefer anyway, with plenty of kissing and cuddling, can be a good place to start. Who knows where it might lead?
The Benefits of Sex:
Sex has numerous benefits for older adults. As per The Senior Directory, ” Sex can assist in relieving pain, helps you sleep better after an ejaculation, and can even prevent prostate cancer. Sex also enhances intimacy between partners and can make you happier increasing overall wellbeing. It also reduces stress due to the release of oxytocin and endorphins.”
Don’t think that if you’re a man in the over-50 crowd, you have to settle for a less-than-fulfilling sex life.