What is middle-aged sexual desire and why does it decrease?

Many people like to be more in touch with others in middle age, and some tend to live an active life with sexual satisfaction, which in middle age means adapting sexual activity to adapt to physical, health and other changes. There are several ways to have sex and intimacy with your partner. Your sexuality includes different types of touch or arousal. Some middle-aged people may not have sex, which is perfectly normal. In this article from Dr. Salam’s sexual section, we examine some of the common problems of sexual orientation in the elderly.

What are the normal changes in middle-aged sexual orientation?

Natural aging causes physical changes in both men and women. These changes sometimes affect the ability to have sex and enjoy it.

A woman’s vagina may change. In middle age, the vagina becomes shorter and narrower. The walls of the vagina become weaker and harder. The vagina is dry and needs more time to slip. These changes make some sexual activities, such as penetration, painful and less enjoyable.

If vaginal dryness is difficult, use a lubricating gel or lubricating condom. If a woman uses hormone therapy to treat hot flashes or other menopausal symptoms, she may be more inclined to have sex.

Impotence (erectile dysfunction) is more common in older men. Erectile dysfunction is an inability to get an erection. Erectile dysfunction causes erections to be delayed. An erection may not be as stable as before. Lack of erection after orgasm may be more or it may take some time before another erection.

Talk to your partner about these changes and express your feelings. The doctor will introduce you to ways to have easier sex.

What causes a decline in middle-aged sexual desire?

Some illnesses, disabilities, medications, and surgeries affect your ability to have sex and enjoy sex.


Joint pain due to osteoarthritis makes sex difficult. Exercise, medications, and possibly joint replacement surgery may help reduce this pain. Rest, hot bath, and change of position or time of sexual activity can be helpful.

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Chronic pain

Pain destroys intimacy between the elderly. Chronic pain is not necessarily a middle-aged condition and can be treated. But some painkillers interfere with sexual activity. Consult your doctor if you have any side effects.


Some people with dementia are more interested in sex and physical intimacy, but may not be able to identify appropriate sexual behavior. People with severe dementia may not know their spouse, but they still tend to have sex and hurt others. This problem is difficult to solve.

Talk to a doctor, nurse or social worker who has received training in dementia care.


It is one of the diseases that causes erectile dysfunction in some men. In most cases, medical treatment is helpful. There is not much information about how diabetes affects the sexual orientation of older women. Women with diabetes are more prone to vaginal yeast infections that cause itching and irritation and make sex difficult or uncomfortable. Yeast infections can be treated.

heart disease

The contraction and hardening of the arteries alters the blood vessels so that the blood does not flow freely, which in turn causes orgasm problems. Sexual arousal is longer for men and women, and for some men, ejaculation will be more difficult. People who have had a heart attack may fear that sex will cause a re-attack. Although sexual activity is generally safe, consult your doctor. Your doctor will change your treatment plan if your heart condition gets worse and you even have chest pain or shortness of breath while resting.

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urinary incontinence

Loss of bladder control or urination is more common in older women. Excessive pressure on the abdomen during sex causes urination. This problem can be solved by changing the position or emptying the bladder before and after sex. Urinary incontinence can be treated.


The ability to have sex is sometimes affected by a stroke. Changing posture or medical devices helps weak or paralyzed people to have sex. Some people with lumbar palsy are still able to orgasm and enjoy sex.


Lack of interest in activities you used to enjoy, such as intimacy and sexual activity, can be a sign of depression. Depression is sometimes difficult to diagnose. Talk to your doctor. Depression can be treated.


Most of us have a laid back attitude when it comes to painting a picture about breast or genital surgery. Most people return to normal after surgery.

Hysterectomy is surgery to remove the uterus due to pain, bleeding, fibroids, or other reasons. Ovaries are often removed when an older woman has a hysterectomy. Decisions about this surgery affect the future of men’s and women’s sex lives. Consult a gynecologist or surgeon if you are concerned about changes from a hysterectomy.

Mastectomy is the surgical removal of all or part of a woman’s breast due to breast cancer. This surgery may cause some women to lose sexual interest or may feel less attractive to their partner. In addition to talking to your doctor, it is sometimes helpful to talk to other women who have had this surgery. Programs such as the American Cancer Society’s “Recovery” program can benefit both men and women. If you want to have your breasts rebuilt, talk to your cancer doctor or surgeon.

Prostatectomy is surgery to remove all or part of a man’s prostate due to prostate cancer or enlargement. This surgery may cause urinary incontinence or erectile dysfunction. If you need this procedure, discuss your concerns with your doctor before surgery.



Some medications can cause sexual problems, including some antihypertensive drugs, antihistamines, antidepressants, sedatives, Parkinson’s disease or cancer medications, appetite suppressants, mental health medications, and wound medications. Some medications cause erectile dysfunction or make it harder to ejaculate in men. Some medications reduce a woman’s libido or cause vaginal dryness and problems with arousal and orgasm. Consult your doctor to prescribe medication without side effects if possible.


Excessive alcohol consumption causes erectile problems in men and delays orgasm in women.

Necessary care and middle-aged sexual desire

Old age does not protect you against sexually transmitted diseases. Older people with more sexual activity may be at risk for diseases such as syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia infection, genital herpes, hepatitis B, genital warts and trichomonas.

Almost anyone who is sexually active may be at risk for HIV or AIDS. The number of older people living with HIV / AIDS is increasing. If you or your partner have more than one sexual partner and your sex is not protected, or if you or your partner have had a joint needle injected, you are at risk for HIV / AIDS. To protect yourself, always use a condom during sex and penetration of the vagina or anus.

Before using a condom, the penis must be completely straight.

Talk to your doctor about ways to protect yourself from sexually transmitted diseases and infections. Do not forget to test and check. Even if you are old, you will not be safe from sexually transmitted diseases.

Do emotions play a role in middle-aged sexuality?

Sexual desire is the balance between emotional and physical issues. Your emotions affect your abilities and your desires. Many older couples are more satisfied with their sex life. In many cases, they have less distraction, more time and privacy, less worries about getting pregnant, and more intimacy with their partner.

Our bodies change with age, including weight, skin and muscle tension, and some older people do not feel comfortable. Older people may worry that they may not be attractive to their partner. Aging-related sexual problems such as those mentioned above can cause stress and anxiety. This worry prevents sexual pleasure.

The stress of older couples is similar to the stress of people of other ages. They may also have more concerns about illness, retirement, and lifestyle changes, which may lead to sexual problems. Talk to your partner and do not blame each other. It is also best to talk to a therapist, alone or in the presence of your spouse. Some therapists have special training to help with sexual problems. If you feel that your partner has changed his or her view of sex, do not assume that they are not interested in you or having sex with you. Many of the factors that cause sexual problems in the elderly can be solved by talking.

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what can I do?

You can contribute to an active and enjoyable sex life. If you have a regular partner, enjoy each other and understand each other’s changes.

Talk to your doctor if you have a problem that affects your sex life. Your doctor will suggest a cure. For example, the most common sexual problem in older women is painful intercourse due to vaginal dryness. Your doctor or pharmacist will prescribe vaginal lubricants or moisturizers. Blue lubricants make sex easier. Moisturizers are used regularly, every 2 or 3 days. Or your doctor may prescribe vaginal estrogen.

If your problem is an erectile dysfunction, it can be treated with medication or other treatments. Solve this problem with pills. People taking nitrate-containing medications such as nitroglycerin should not take these pills. The pills have side effects. Avoid dietary or herbal supplements to treat erectile dysfunction. Talk to your doctor before taking any herbs or supplements.

Physical problems change your sex life as you get older. If you are single, dating and meeting new people is easier in middle age, of course, if you believe in yourself and your desires. If you are in a relationship, you and your spouse may find new ways to be together. Share your needs with your spouse. You may find that loving, kissing, touching and spending time together is what you need or is a way to have more intimacy and sex.

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