The Ultimate Guide to Sex for The Menopausal Woman

While many things change as we get older, having a healthy and fulfilling sex life doesn't have to be one of them. Here's how to keep the spark alive.
Femme Pharma Feature

In partnership with FemmePharma.

This biggest misconception as we get older is we lose our sexuality. Things may look and feel different, but we should continue to embrace our sexuality and our sensuality. Sex can still be just as great as it was when we were younger – maybe even better! Here is the ultimate guide to sex as a menopausal woman!

First, don’t feel embarrassed to talk about sex with your doctor

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In both men and women, it’s important doctors ask about sexual interest, arousal, satisfaction, quality of a relationship, mood, pain, and the effects of illnesses, medications, and surgeries. However, doctors don’t typically ask these questions. We’re not saying your doctor needs to know every detail of your sex life, but there are some things you should be sure to make them aware of:

  • Your method of disease prevention. 
  • Problems you have during sex, like pain, bleeding, or dryness. These symptoms may be signs of infection, menopause, or even certain gynecological cancers.
  • Changes in your sex drive. A change in sex drive may be a consequence of hormonal shifts, depression, or other conditions that your doctor can treat.

How to maintain your libido during menopause

Fluctuating hormones during perimenopause and menopause can lessen your desire for sex. Medications may also impact your libido, so talk to your doctor about all the possible side effects and options you may have to remedy them.

Other reasons you may be experiencing low libido in menopause:

The best thing you can do to maintain your libido is to communicate. What do your sexual needs look like? What are your expectations with sex? Do you need more time with foreplay? Is penetration off the table for you? Do you find yourself not wanting sex as often as your significant other? Explore these questions with your partner and set a game plan.

Ways to improve your sex life in menopause

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It’s important to maintain a healthy sex life. Remember, a healthy sex life can be with yourself or with a partner.

Communicate what you need to your partner 

No one is a mind reader. When sexual function problems arise, shame, guilt, and even resentment can build up and create bigger problems. Good communication is the foundation for any healthy relationship, and establishing open dialogue around sex will help build a closer bond and strengthen trust.

Be open to changing the definition of sex

Forget “intercourse” and think more about “outercourse”! If we only focus on penetration, we forget about all the other ways we can enjoy intimacy with our partner. Think oral sex, mutual masturbation, or an erotic massage.

Practice a healthy lifestyle

A healthy lifestyle is where it starts. Healthy sex life and sexual function are dependent on a healthy cardiovascular system and good overall health, so be mindful when it comes to eating right and exercising regularly. Think about limiting alcohol consumption, not smoking, reducing stress, and getting enough sleep every night.

3 benefits of a healthy sex life in menopause 

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Sex can have numerous benefits throughout your life, and menopausal women can reap even more health benefits, from the obvious (stress relief) to the surprising (migraine prevention).

Sex is a great stress reliever 

Menopausal women experience increased stress, and the good news is that sex is a natural stress reliever. Sex triggers the release of hormones and chemicals such as dopamine, serotonin, and oxytocin, which help promote happiness, satisfaction, and overall well-being.

Sex after menopause is good for your vagina

Vaginal atrophy happens when the body produces less estrogen. This can cause dryness, pain during sex, itching, urinary incontinence, and spotting. The solution? Being sexually active during perimenopause and after menopause helps maintain the blood flow needed to keep vaginal tissue healthy.

Sex helps to strengthen the pelvic floor

About 50% percent of women experience incontinence at some point in their lives, with two of the most common times being after childbirth and after menopause. Pelvic floor exercises are one way to address incontinence. The other way? Regular sex. When you orgasm, you contract the muscles of the pelvic floor, which strengthens them — just in case you need an excuse to have more orgasms.

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