A recent study by University of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania looked at the importance of sex to women as they age and presented their findings at the North American Menopause Society’s virtual meeting in September 2020.
“ For 27 percent of the women, sex remained highly important to them throughout midlife”
The general finding was that if the woman had a good sex life prior to menopause, then they would continue to do so after menopause.
The thing to bear in mind here, is that maintaining a good sex life is more than just the physical act. It’s about feeling good about yourself – not easy if you are sweating profusely and maybe feel uncomfortable about gaining some weight gain. If you are tired from lack of sleep. Or if sex itself has become difficult or painful. Vaginal dryness can be a serious issue, and this comes under an umbrella of other vaginal symptoms known as Genitourinary Syndrome of the Menopause.
This isn’t something that women are often spoken to about, certainly not routinely in the GP surgery. But there is lots that can be done.
- HRT can address many of these issues. There are many ways of delivering this, so if one didn’t work, go back to your health professional and explore another
- If you do not want to go the hormonal route, you could consider a natural lubricant such as Sylk
- Consuming vitamin E and C. These help to keep the skin supple:
- Vitamin E: oily fish, avocado, seeds and nuts
- Vitamin C: berries, broccoli, parsley, and kale
- Improving your diet can help with many menopausal symptoms that may be affecting your self-esteem. You can read more how diet can help by clicking here.
- Talk with your partner about how you are feeling. Maybe consider being intimate in a way you are more comfortable with.
The message from this is, if you enjoy sex, you do not have to give up on sex!