Improve Your Sex Life At Any Age

Let’s talk about sex.

Is your sex life not what you thought it would be? Does the thought alone make you tired? Many people find their interest in lovemaking naturally drops with age. And the stress of daily life is enough to put anyone in a rut in the bedroom at times. Changing bodies can mean self-confidence takes a knock, not to mention that for women, those changes can sometimes make sex painful. Yikes! Who wants to willingly do something that causes pain?

So, let’s have a real conversation. After all, communication is the key to good relationships and good sex at any age. And it’s important not to overlook the vital role sex can play in our lives. That’s partly because a healthy sex life can improve your health, crazy but true – good sex is associated with a longer life, better sleep, and a lower risk of depression, to name just a few benefits.

Here are some steps you can take to improve your sex life:

1. Start by talking to your naturopathic doctor

There are a number of medical issues that can affect your interest in sex. And while they are fairly common, they are not ideal and deserve some attention.

Both depression and thyroid problems can reduce your interest in sex, but to compound the issue, many of the medications used to treat these conditions can have a dampening effect on libido.

In addition, you might want to get your hormone levels checked. As we get older, our androgens (testosterone being a key player here), starts to decline. One of the roles androgens play is to rev up our libido, so this process can have a serious impact on desire. And the drop in estrogen levels that accompanies perimenopause can affect your libido too.

Shifting hormones can affect your sex life in other ways. For example, lower estrogen levels can sometimes lead to so-called “vaginal atrophy”, which is characterized by:

  • Vaginal dryness, even during daily life activities
  • Reduced lubrication during intercourse
  • Thinning vaginal tissue, leading to pain during intercourse
  • Urinary incontinence, which can make women self-conscious

Other physical changes caused by declining hormones can also reduce your sexual desire. For example, some women gain weight during perimenopause, which reduces their self-confidence. Others find they’re simply too tired to think about sex. And some are just too hot – not hot in a “sexy” way, but so troubled by hot flashes that they can’t imagine having another warm body near them.

Sexual desire can require a careful balance of hormones to maintain. You may have taken this for granted when you were younger, but changes are a normal part of your life cycle. Fortunately, help is available. There are many ways to treat the effects changing hormones can have on sex, from vaginal lubricants to hormone replacement therapy and supplements. Your healthcare practitioner can help you find what works for you. So, don’t be embarrassed to talk about a change in your libido!

2. Focus on the positive and be in the moment

Yes, your body changes with age. However, it’s time to let go of any negative feelings you have about those changes. Inhibitions and problems with self-confidence are a sure way to lose interest in your sexual self. Try to accept the changes you’ve experienced. Be honest with your partner about your feelings (they may have similar thoughts about themselves).

Focus on the good things you’ve acquired with age. You may not have the body you once had, but you now have the experience to know what you want and what turns you on. In the end, self-confidence and communication are more attractive than a perfect body. Think about who are you are now and what you want.

3. Look beyond the bedroom

Many people lose interest in sex when they’re stressed. For women in particular, emotions that originate far away from the bedroom can influence their sex life. For example, many women are more likely to experience physical pain with intercourse if they’re experiencing tensions with their partner. In other words, your emotions can play as much of a role as your physical health in your sexual pleasure.

Talking about your relationship before a sexual encounter can help prevent those other problems from spilling over into your sexual relationship. If you’re experiencing relationship troubles, consider counseling. Your healthcare provider can provide advice on the next steps if you feel this is something you could benefit from.

What else can you do outside the bedroom to improve your sex life? Exercise is an excellent start. Even light exercise has been proven to improve sexual function. Not only can exercise improve your confidence, it lowers your levels of the stress hormone cortisol and raises your endorphin levels. Strength training, pilates, yoga, and cardio exercise have all been shown to improve women’s sex lives. So, do something that makes you feel powerful and confident.

4. Make the time

Unfortunately, the physical changes we experience with age often happen at a busy time for most women. Whether you’re pulled away from romance by work, family, or just the pressures of modern life, it can be hard to find time to address sexual problems. It can even be difficult to put time aside that prioritizes your relationship.

It’s important to make the time to talk to your partner about sexual concerns. Even something as simple as vowing to go to bed at the same time a few times a week can help you rediscover each other. In addition, many couples find that their sex lives improve if they find time to do fun things together other than sex.

Sex matters. If you’re experiencing a less than amazing sex life, don’t hesitate to call the office. Testing and treatment for hormone imbalances can restore your libido. And talking about concerns with an open-minded listener is a great way to start improving your sex life. Sex can become even better with age!

References:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15889125
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30699876
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2671314/
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5963213/

Happiness Checklist: Are You as Happy as You Want to Be?

Are you happy?

It might be a simple question, but for many people, happiness feels like an impossible goal to reach. In fact, studies show that only about one in three people consistently identify as “happy.”

If that seems a bit depressing, rest easy. The steps to living a happier life are easier than you think. And no, those steps don’t involve winning the lottery. Believe it or not, most lottery winners have the same level of happiness they had before hitting the jackpot. Researchers call this the “hedonic treadmill” in which we repeatedly adjust to a base level of happiness even if our external circumstances change. Crazy right?!

Happiness Comes From Within

The simple truth is that living a happier life starts from within. Becoming happier involves a change in our internal circumstances. That may sound a bit far fetched, but the science of happiness has found consistent patterns in people who live their lives with joy.

And there’s a lot of motivation to join those happy people. In addition to making our days more pleasurable, happiness offers many health benefits, including:

  • A lower heart rate and blood pressure
  • A stronger immune system
  • Lower levels of the “stress hormone” cortisol
  • A better response to pain

The Happiness Checklist:

Take a look at this happiness checklist to see the areas of your own life that could provide a happiness boost.

Is your gut happy?

When we say happiness starts from within, we mean it literally. More research is finding that our gut bacteria has a profound influence on our moods. Researchers call this dynamic the “gut-brain-axis.” In simple terms, when our gut is inflamed, we can experience increased levels of anxiety and depression. That’s because your gut contains microbes that produce substances that control your mood – serotonin is a good example of a substance that is produced in your gut. In addition, your gut and your brain are connected by a complex network of nerves. The Vagus nerve continuously mediates from the gut to the brain and neurotransmitters (such as serotonin) produced in the intestines control the behaviour of our Gut and flood our Brain. Colonic irrigation has been shown to stimulate gut serotonin and directly affect the Vagus nerve. This undoubtedly accounts for the fact that colonic irrigation generally leaves someone feeling peaceful, uplifted and more clear headed.

Some dietary changes can improve your gut health and your mood. Focus on high-fiber whole foods, foods with plenty of Omega-3 fats, and fermented foods. (Fermented foods can positively influence your brain activity!)

Are you around other happy people?

You really can catch a good mood. One study found that happiness can go viral. In other words, being around people who are upbeat and feel good about their lives can impact your own happiness levels, The study didn’t just consider the impact of the moods in your immediate family, but also your neighbours. And being around a happy person can quickly multiply since your own increased happiness can influence those around you. The whole process is not unlike a cold – but much better!

Do you get a regular dose of Vitamin N (for nature)?

Spending time in natural environments boosts happiness levels in several ways. Interestingly, this effect has been shown to be stronger in women than men, and stronger in older adults than their younger counterparts.

Are you balancing movement and rest?

You probably know that exercise releases feel-good endorphins that improve your mood. However, you may not realize that you don’t have to make a big commitment to fitness in order to feel the impact of movement. In fact, endorphins can kick in quickly. One study found that it only takes 20 minutes of walking outside to experience a boost in your mood.

It’s important to note that rest is just as important as exercise. Sleep’s effect on our brain helps us to focus on the positive, and being sleep-deprived makes us more sensitive to negative emotions. In another study, researchers found that people who don’t get enough sleep recall unpleasant memories much more quickly than people getting enough sleep.

Do you help others?

Acts of kindness are another way that happiness spreads. In other words, by making others happy, you can feel happier. Doing something nice for someone else, whether it’s donating to charity, volunteering your time, or simply holding the door for an older person, makes us feel better about ourselves. And if you think you’re too busy or too stressed to donate your time, consider this: One study found that 78 percent of people who volunteer say it lowers their stress levels. And in another study, people felt happier after buying something for someone else than they did after treating themselves!

Can you forgive?

Forgiving others may ultimately be a kindness to yourself. By forgiveness, we don’t necessarily mean letting bad behavior slide or turning into a pushover. Instead, focus on letting go of resentment and anger. Those negative emotions are not helping you, and often can keep you stuck in the past instead of moving forward. And studies show that a more forgiving attitude can lead to multiple physical and emotional benefits.

Are you grateful?

Being grateful for what we have also increases happiness levels. It makes perfect sense if you think about it. For example, if you keep a gratitude journal, you will look for things you’re grateful for to record in it throughout the course of your day. Over time, you’ll find yourself focusing on the positive.

How did you do? Are you interested in improving your happiness levels? As you can see, living life happily requires a holistic approach. If you’d like to work together for a happier, more fulfilling life, give us a call and let’s do this together. Science and nature are a powerful combination!

References:
https://www.unitedhealthgroup.com/content/dam/UHG/PDF/2013/UNH-Health-Volunteering-Study.pdf
https://www.annelisemiller.com/education/blog-articles/23-effects-of-colonics-on-gut-flora1
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/10/161005102254.htm
https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Safaria_Triantoro/publication/275025845_Forgivness_Gratitude_and_Happiness_among_College_Students/links/552f3cf00cf2acd38cbbf270.pdf
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5641835/
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0197458005002769\
https://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=97848789https://www.bakadesuyo.com/2011/04/how-to-quickly-and-easiy-feel-happier-and-mor/#ixzz2b36XGs00
https://my.happify.com/hd/forgiving-others-is-the-best-thing-you-can-do-for-yourself/
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3839572/