In old age there are two important categories of phenomena: bodily change and physiological and psychological changes.
The body changes in proportions, in the elasticity of the skin and in muscle tone. It is clear how the man who constantly performs physical activity, does not suffer from performance anxiety, who cares for his health, who eats in a healthy way greatly limits the damage of physical decay.
Added to this is a decrease in sensory capacities, which can however be remedied today, such as eyeglasses and any very functional hearing aids. If the person keeps the mind active, showing himself as open, flexible and continuing to learn and try to improve himself, these same sensory changes come to be less perceived.
The psychological convictions are the most deleterious and negatively affect the elderly, especially men in the sexual sphere, for example: the fear of growing old, of losing memory, of not being attractive anymore, of losing erectile capacity, etc.
There are false beliefs that negatively affect the sexuality of the elderly and have been identified by T. Kuhn.
Myth N 1: Sex does not matter in old age. The life of the elderly should be asexual.
In reality, sex is a lifetime instinct (Eros, in terms of Freudian theory) and this instinct lasts until death.
Myth No. 2: Interest in sex is abnormal in the elderly.
The interest in sex is normal at all ages.
Myth No. 3: the elderly should not remarry after the death of their spouse.
Instead, people who find new love interests stay young longer. Always having new goals helps to prolong life.
Hotvedt identified three other false beliefs:
Unfortunately, in our society that demonizes old age and death, these beliefs negatively affect the sexual life of elderly people, creating problems of lack of desire (for fear of making a bad impression it is better to abstain), premature ejaculation (due to few opportunities to have sex and anxiety mechanisms) and impotence, more mental than physical.
In conclusion, it is appropriate to adopt an active lifestyle, attentive to health and an open mind that will allow you to stay young longer.
Let us remember that these are false beliefs: if the person remains active, takes care of his health and avoids invalidating diseases, he can have a sexual life regardless of age. Furthermore, nowadays there is the concrete possibility, both from a psychological and a strictly functional point of view, of “helping” a fearful or inadequate sexuality, also supporting it with ad hoc products.
A curiosity: the maximum level of sexual power occurs in adolescence, then sexual intelligence prevails, that is the experience, the ability to understand the desires of the partner to be able to satisfy them. In conclusion, it is appropriate to adopt an active lifestyle, be attentive to health and have an open mind that will allow you to stay young longer.