You are never too old to enjoy a happy and healthy sex life, and hormone replacement therapy (HRT) can help!
You probably have heard that a man “reaches his sexual peak” at around 18, and for women, it can be much later, around 35 or 40, however there really is very little truth to either of these common misconceptions.
Your libido, or sex drive, is largely determined by hormones, so it stands to reason that any kind of “sexual peak,” would occur when those hormones that influence your desire for sexual activity, are at their “peak” levels. For men, that means testosterone, and for women, estrogen. Both hormones, for boys and girls respectively, begin to be released by your endocrine system around the time of puberty.
Moving forward from there, if we were to look at it from a strictly biological perspective, sex hormone output in both men and women reaches its physiological “peak,” in the 20s. Yet common wisdom says only men “peak” at that time, and for women it occurs later, in their 30s or even 40s. This idea of an early “peak” for men, and a later one for women is really something of an “urban legend.”
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It has far more to do with psychology and societal norms, than it does with biology. Men, almost as soon as they are sexually mature, are actually encouraged to have sex, while women are taught to suppress their urges. Most women do not become secure in their sexual feelings until later in life, and that is for the most part, what has created the myth of the mid-life sexual peak for women.
The truth is your individual true sexual peak has as much to do with many other factors and influences, then merely the levels of sex hormones in your blood. Both men and women are enjoying active and healthy sex lives well into their 50s and beyond.
In fact, a recent sex survey of more than 12,000 people found that women report the best sex of their lives at 28, and men, contrary to popular belief, said 33 was the average age of best sex. This would seem to indicate that the knowledge and experience that comes with maturity, also has a lot to do with satisfaction.
Now, all of this is not to say that hormones do no decrease as you get older. And, that decrease in hormones, particularly low testosterone in men, can and does impact your life.
Hormone Replacement and Sexual Wellness for Men
While many factors other than age, from diet to stress, to sleep, can all affect your sex drive or libido, the drop in testosterone that occurs as men age, is often the cause of sexual wellness issues. Testosterone treatments for increased libido can range from applying topical creams, or gels to oral supplementation.
These types of testosterone therapies have been shown to have a positive effect on men who have been experiencing a decreased sex drive and performance issues.
Men experiencing erectile difficulties and/or lack of libido, have also benefited from growth hormone therapy.
Hormone Replacement and Sexual Wellness for Women
One of the most common complaints of pre and post-menopausal sexual problems is painful intercourse due to vaginal dryness. Hormone replacement therapy via the use of estrogen containing creams, patches or sub-dermal pellets, has proven to be a very effective treatment in increasing lubrication in women.
Interestingly enough, women approaching menopause also have a decrease not only in estrogen, but in testosterone as well. Testosterone is usually thought of only as a male hormone, but it is also produced, and needed by women’s bodies.
Decreasing levels of testosterone in menopausal women can lead to lack of libido, or a decreased interest in sex. Low testosterone is also related to some of the other typical symptoms of menopause such as hot flashes, loss of energy, and “mental fog.”
For women experiencing these and other symptoms, bioidentical replacement hormone therapy that combines estrogen and testosterone is a very good option.
For a long time women feared hormone replacement therapy (HRT), due to mostly false reports that HRT increased the risk of breast cancer or heart disease. Recently this link has been largely disproven, and HRT poses no additional cancer risk in most women. Women should not suffer from a dissatisfied sex life, or other symptoms of menopause due to a misunderstanding about the risks, vs the benefits of HRT.
Other Benefits of Hormone Therapy
In addition to the relief of sexual dysfunction issues, hormone therapy has many other positive benefits in both men and women!
Hormone therapy can:
- Strengthen bones and increase bone density
- Reduce “foggy thinking,” poor concentration, and otherwise improve cognition
- Increase energy and vitality
- Improve sleep
- Support the increase of lean muscle and reduce belly fat
- Reduce the occurrence of mood swings, depression and anxiety
But the only way to find out if you are a candidate for hormone therapy is to contact your doctor, and have your hormone levels tested and professionally evaluated.