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Sex and Quality of Life

Posted 8/6/2015

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  I love it when I have a title that I know will grab your attention! Today's news is a short article from Reuters about a study from Scotland that suggests that older people who continue to have an intimate relationship have a higher quality of life. This study did not only focus on individuals with a cancer history, but I am completely certain that the same findings would apply.

  I suspect that the improved QOL (quality of life) is not specifically focused on sex itself or how many orgasms/month someone experiences. It has more to do with intimacy, feeling loving and loved, being close. The study, as you will see, asked about a range of behaviors, not just intercourse. This study was also limited to people 65 or over, but I know that the same results would old for younger people, too. Keeping with this broader focus, I am even more certain of the importance of these feelings to people with cancer or a history of cancer. We may need reassurance that we are still desirable, manly or womanly. We may need the safety of a loving relationship and the feeling that we are not alone in this world. When I shared this study with some others, one woman immediately suggested that we try to do something similar in the Boston area and volunteered to participate.

  Here is the start and a link to read more:

For seniors, sexual activity is linked to higher quality of life
(Reuters Health) - Older adults who value sexual activity and engage in it have better social
lives and psychological well-being, according to a small study in Scotland
by Madeline Kennedy •

 Older adults who value sexual activity and engage in it have better social lives and
psychological well-being, according to a small study in Scotland
Older adults said "they miss and want to engage in sexual behaviors, whether that be a kiss to intercourse," said study coauthor Taylor-Jane Flynn in an email. "For many, these behaviors remained an important element in their life."
Flynn, a psychology PhD candidate at Glasgow Caledonian University, said the study was inspired by her work as a health care assistant for elderly people.
Although quality of life is a key consideration for older adults, sexuality is rarely studied, write Flynn and Alan
Gow, an associate professor of psychology at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, in the journal Age and Ageing.
The researchers recruited 133 Scottish adults aged 65 and over by distributing questionnaires at local clubs, small businesses and older people’s groups.
About half the participants lived with a spouse or partner.

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