Sex doesn’t end for senior citizens just because they are getting older and neither do sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). While pregnancy might not be a concern once a woman goes through menopause she still needs to be apprehensive about diseases associated with having sex. Perhaps, it’s time to for the younger generation to have “the talk” with their grandparents.
One might think that the older community is busy with crossword puzzles, bingo, reading and perhaps playing cards. That doesn’t seem to be the case. Men and women over 65 are busy having sex, unprotected sex. STDs are spreading quickly among men and women of the older community. Past reports shows that only about 5% of those in the golden years believe that sex is just for the young. Out of this age group 85% has some sort of intimate experience at least once a week, including kissing or intercourse.
Today assisted living facilities and retirement communities are being likened to college campuses. There are a lot of people crammed together and natural instincts begin to kick in. The older generation is in better health and as a result they are living longer. These senior citizens are proving to the world that the golden years don’t affect their desire to be intimate and as a result most are still very active sexually.
Although having sexual intercourse is not a problem in men and women age 65 and older, sexually transmitted diseases are. Once they’ve successful navigated the “change of life” men grab those Viagra pills and the women have no concern about conceiving a child so they do what comes natural, often not giving one thought to the possibility of contracting a disease.
Sexually Transmitted Diseases don’t just affect one particular age group or gender. The senior communities are experiencing the dramatic results associated with STDs. Many of them are overly exposed because of multiple sex partners and non-protected sexual activity.
The statistics and rates have reached tremendous highs and are growing. There are greater risks for seniors to contract a STD now than in times past. Many are widowed, divorced and lonely and in need of affection or “love.” They may not be interested in a steady partner but are still interested in intercourse and intimacy.
There are many STDs that people should be aware of such as Syphilis, gonorrhea and Chlamydia, which are bacterial based and can be treated through the process of antibiotics. However other STDs like Genital Herpes, HIV and AIDs have no known cure and must be dealt with for the remainder of the individual’s life. The golden years should be the best years, not time dealing with treatment or aggravation of STDs.
Many of the younger generation have been taught about STDs, especially with sexual activity with multiply partners, occurring much earlier in their lives than the older generation. It’s not so much they older people do not care as it is they simply know less about these diseases, how they spread or prevention.
The danger is in contracting a STD is many of these diseases have no immediate symptoms. The ones that do have some type of symptom can easily be confused with other diseases that are not transmitted sexually. Whether a person has symptoms or not they can still carry and transmit a STD to a partner.
Sex doesn’t end just because people age and neither do sexually transmitted diseases. STDs are on the rise in adults 65 and older, it is time for safe sex counselors to become as involved at assisted living facilities and retirement communities as they are in colleges.
By: Cherese Jackson (Virginia)