Sexual health should be part of the aging discussion, Mayo expert says | How to improve your sex life as you age
(Sharyn Jackson, Star Tribune) When it comes to aging, women are comfortable talking about hot flashes. But what about sex?
Carol Kuhle, an expert on menopause, aging and sexual health at the Mayo Clinic’s Women’s Health Clinic, thinks sexual health should be part of the conversation.
“People have a hard time talking about it,” said Kuhle.
But that could be changing, as women get more information about the changes in their bodies and more comfortable in talking about sex during menopause and beyond.
We asked Kuhle about relationships, sexual function and how older women — and men — can improve their sex lives as they age.
Q: What do women ask about most often?
A: One of the bigger questions we get in the clinic is what happens to their sexual drive. Hormones can certainly be a driver, but it’s oftentimes more complicated than that. You’re trying to reframe your thoughts about sexual function and your relationship.
There was an interesting study done among people whose kids had grown up and gone. Now they’re faced with their relationship, which has been on the back burner. The kids are launched, and it’s like, “OK, who are you?” So that becomes an important part of the piece, teasing out the factors in why people have a decrease in sexual drive.
Q: Anything else?
A: People want to know what happens to women during that transition that affects their sexual functioning. It’s a very complicated topic. There are physiologic changes that make a difference. One of the biggest changes, if women do not get hormone therapy, is that the vulva and vagina will feel dry, and there are ways to treat that.
Q: Do enough people talk about these changes — with their partners or with their doctors?
A: It wasn’t talked about. There was a study … READ THE FULL STORY AT STAR TRIBUNE.