Specialists are trying dispel myths around intimate relationships as couples grow older and become embarrassed of their sex lives.
How long will I love you, the study by the International Longevity Centre UK surveyed men and women between 50 and 90 plus to examine the affects intimacy and relationships can have on people as they grow older.
Being comfortable with your sexuality and in a positive relationship has been linked to greater wellbeing regardless of age, but the taboo surrounding the conversation in later life puts people at risk of poor sexual health.
Health professionals have been urged to engage with older people about their sexual health, which could be affecting individuals and couples.
Dr David Lee from University of Manchester’s Institute for Collaborative Research on Ageing believes the risk of embarrassment is not worth the risk of sexual or mental health problems.
“Older people have a right to good sexual health care and should be able to easily access joined up services to help them meet that goal,” said Dr Lee. “By normalising conversations around sex and older people, health professionals can help to counter stereotypes and misconceptions around sex in later life, which will ultimately improve public health.”