Sex After Menopause

July 20, 2010

Menopause is often dreaded by those still approaching this phase of their lives. There is an erroneous assumption shared by both genders that menopause is an end to female sensuality. But the reality is very different. A large number of women find that menopause enhances the quality of their sex lives.

There may be a need to make some adjustments. For instance, the depletion of estrogen means that some women will suffer from a lack of vaginal lubrication. This can make sex a source of discomfort. That doesn't mean that your sex life has to end. It means that you need to use a bit of vaginal lubricant, bought over-the-counter at any pharmacy.

Lengthy Intimacy

You may also find that it takes you longer to reach your climax. But what a luxury to have long, slow foreplay and all that extra cuddling and stroking! Most women will, after a time, learn to relax and enjoy these lengthy periods of intimacy.

The fear that menopause marks a woman as being out of the game, or somehow less desirable, derives from social stereotyping in which aging is associated with being less attractive and asexual on the whole. Some may feel that losing the skill of bearing children is linked to losing the ability to arouse sexual attention. But studies show that 70%-80% of menopausal women don't experience fewer sexual encounters or reduced sexual satisfaction.

For the small number of women who find sex no longer interests them, there are effective solutions available. There are physiological changes that come with menopause and these may have an effect on your sex life. There may be less lubrication, the walls of the vagina thin out, there may be a loss of libido, and it may take longer to reach orgasm. These changes can make sex less enjoyable, and sometimes uncomfortable.

Vaginal dryness is the most common of these issues, though only 20% experience this physiological change. As the vaginal walls thin and lose their elasticity there may also be a bit of pain, burning, itching, and bleeding with intercourse. This is where KY jelly, strategically applied, can work wonders. Replens can also be a help if it is used on a regular basis. If none of these suggestions work, ask your doctor about estrogen creams, tablets, or rings.

Less Intense

Some women may find they don't always have orgasms when they have postmenopausal sex. Even when they do climax, the orgasms may be less intense. It takes more stimulation and time to reach a state of arousal. Having intercourse or masturbating on a regular basis can help maintain sexual pleasure and responsiveness.

Engaging in these activities exercises the muscles that support your vagina, uterus, and bladder while also increasing lubrication. Kegel exercises are also helpful at this time.

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