According to a new study released by the CDC, "New CDC analysis shows steep and sustained increases in STD’s in recent years.”

Preliminary data shows that in 2017, there were nearly 2.3 million cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis diagnosed in the United States.

 

 

These steep and sustained increases are so alarming that they are being analyzed yearly at the National STD Prevention Conference.

 

 

Many seniors are starting over after losing a partner.

Sometimes the excitement of a new relationship takes the place of common sense. Not only is it difficult to communicate with a new partner, but there are also anxieties associated with this that can impact a new relationship. In most cases, seniors rarely discuss their sex life with their kids, grandchildren or their physicians. 

A lot of physicians do not even realize that their patients are active in a sexual way.  This is especially true if seniors/patients are accompanied by family members or caregivers to their physician appointments.

With advancements in technology and medicine, people are living longer, healthier lives. Sexual Health needs to be part of that discussion.

IndependentAge.org has been providing free and impartial advice on the issues that matter as we age for over 150 years. According to their article, Sex Late in Life,

sex-health-advice“It’s important to practice safe sex with a new partner. Pregnancy may no longer be a concern, but you can still get or pass sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Condoms are the only method of contraception than can help protect against STIs, which include genital warts, chlamydia and HIV.”

 

 

Robert Weiss LCSW, CSAT-S, digital-age intimacy and relationships expert, addresses the subject matter in his article, Baby Boomers Gone Wild! Seniors and STDs on Psychology Today. 

Mr. Weiss provides an in-depth analysis of the various factors he believes are causing this huge rise in sexually transmitted infections/diseases. 

Modern healthcare, retirement communities, and lack of sex education are but a few of the contributing factors. 

While the statistical data backs up the fact that seniors are engaging in and enjoying sex longer than believed possible, we found Mr. Weiss’s assertion that “Growing older and wiser doesn’t make people any less susceptible to disease” quite a poignant statement.

While weakened immune systems and other issues related to aging can complicate matters, it is very important to note that we are more prone to infection the older we get.  Mr. Weiss further states  “To make matters worse is the fact that STD’s can be asymptomatic for lengthy periods, meaning they often go untreated.”

Medicare recognizes the fact that not all seniors are practicing safe sex.  For that reasons, free STD screenings are offered by Medicare.  Mr. Weiss points out that only about 5% of those eligible for this valuable no-cost service are utilizing it.

Mr. Weiss concludes his article by pointing out that education both nationally and at a grassroots level is the only way to slow this growing problem.