Sexual Satisfaction - As Women Get Older Things Improve
Medicalnewstoday.com Jan 6, 2012
The January issue of The
American Journal of Medicine has
published a new study, which reveals that sexual satisfaction in sexually
active older women increases with age, whilst those who are not sexually
active are satisfied with their sex lives. According to the study, most of
the study participants report frequent arousal and orgasm, which continue
into old age despite low sexual desire.
In the study, researchers from the
University of California at the San Diego School of Medicine and the
Veterans Affairs San Diego Healthcare System assessed reports of 806 women
with an average age of 67 years in terms of their sexual activity and
satisfaction. 63% of the women were postmenopausal. All of the women were
part of the Rancho Bernardo Study (RBS) cohort, living in a planned
community near San Diego; their health has been tracked for medical research
for 40 years.
For their study, the researchers measured
various factors, including how many women were currently sexually active,
the characteristics linked to sexual activity, such as demographics, health,
and hormone use, their frequency of arousal, lubrication, orgasm, and pain
during sexual intercourse, as well as the women's sexual desire and
According to the findings, half of the
respondents reported that they have a partner and had been sexually active
within the last 4 weeks, however, the likelihood of sexual activity declined
with age. Whilst 67.1% of sexually active women reported to achieve an
orgasm most of the time or always, the youngest and oldest study
participants reported the highest frequency of orgasm satisfaction.
The researchers found that 40% of all women
reported to never or almost never felt sexual desire, whilst one third of
the sexually active women reported low sexual desire. According to leading
researcher Elizabeth Barrett-Connor, MD, Distinguished Professor and Chief
at the Division of Epidemiology and the Department of Family and Preventive
Medicine at the University of California and San Diego School of Medicine:
"Despite a correlation between sexual desire and other sexual function
domains, only 1 in 5 sexually active women reported high sexual desire.
Approximately half of the women aged 80 years or more reported arousal,
lubrication, and orgasm most of the time, but rarely reported sexual desire.
In contrast with traditional linear model in which desire precedes sex,
these results suggest that women engage in sexual activity for multiple
reasons, which may include affirmation or sustenance of a relationship."
61% of the participating women stated that
they were satisfied with their overall sex life irrespective of whether they
had a partner or were sexually active. The researchers noted that even
though older age is being known as an important predictor of low sexual
satisfaction, the percentage of women in the RBS study who reported being
sexually satisfied actually increased with age.
About half of the women over 80 years stated
that they always or almost always achieved sexual satisfaction. Furthermore,
researchers noted that not only were the oldest women in the study the most
satisfied overall, those who stated to have been sexually active recently
also reported to have experienced orgasm satisfaction rates similar to those
of the youngest participants.
First author Susan Trompeter, MD, Associate
Clinical Professor of Medicine of the Department of Medicine at the
University of California at San Diego School of Medicine and Staff Physician
at the VA San Diego Healthcare System, stated:
"In this study, sexual activity was not always necessary for sexual
satisfaction. Those who were not sexually active may have achieved sexual
satisfaction through touching, caressing, or other intimacies developed over
the course of a long relationship."
Trompeter concludes stating that:
"Emotional and physical closeness to the partner may be more important than
experiencing orgasm. A more positive approach to female sexual health
focusing on sexual satisfaction may be more beneficial to women than a focus
limited to female sexual activity or dysfunction."
Written by Petra Rattue
Copyright: Medical News Today
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