Regular Sex reduces the risk of Dementia in women : As we all know, sex is pleasurable for both males and females. But did you know that the physical touch and a good sexual relationship can not only help you live longer but also healthier? The benefits include relief from stress, lower blood pressure, a healthy cardiovascular system, higher immunity and higher cognitive ability, which in turn means a healthier brain.
Several studies have now proven that besides being pleasurable and a stress reliever, sex can also help prevent Alzheimer’s and dementia progression, especially in women.
Isn’t that surprising that Regular Sex reduces the risk of Dementia?
The Coventry study
A team from Coventry University in Britain has conducted an extensive research on sexual intercourse including both males and females. The research found that that sex prevents mental deterioration in older adults, especially women, keeping them at a reduced risk of neurodegenerative conditions such as dementia.
The research also depicts, that adults in their 50s, especially women who have steamy sexual lives develop sharp cognitive skills. A study of Italian people who belonged to the ages above 65 and were still sexually active scored higher on cognitive tests than those who were sexually inactive. Moreover, further tests conducted on older women as well as men exhibit that sexually active older adults are better able to recall lists and patterns, projecting signs of a healthy brain.
With this finding, the researchers at Coventry conducted a more in-depth analysis; a longitudinal study of 7000 adults ranging between the ages 50 to 89 was done to study how sex influenced their mental ability.
A list of ten words was played to them, and then they were asked to recall them right after. After a 5-minute break, they were again asked to remember the words in the right order. Another activity was to give the participants a sequence of numbers with some numbers missing, and they were required to fill in the missing numbers.
Upon evaluation, it was found out that sexually active men scored 23% higher on the word task and 3% higher on the sequence completion, while women who were sexually active had scored 14% and 2% more in the respected tasks.
The study was published in Age and Ageing, a medical journal, it was found that it was possibly due to the release of hormones, namely dopamine and oxytocin during sex that lead to the person feeling rewarded and so was the reason of learning and a good memory. It also said that sexual counseling should be promoted in the healthcare setting, considering a healthy sex life in later years showed wellbeing and improved cognitive function.
According to Pauline Brown, a psychosexual counselor, one should be in good shape by regularly exercising different parts of the body, and since sexual activity brings about so many positive changes in the brain, it will help the person be more agile.
Another aspect is that aging can cause some physical barriers, but the findings show that couples should keep the sexual component of the relationship strong.
Even after adjusting for factors like income, physical activity, education, there was a reliable connection between high sexual activity level and higher scores on cognitive tests comprising of word recall, pattern recognition, and number sequences. Women, however, performed better on word tests as opposed to men doing well on number sequencing.
According to NJ.com, baby boomers have redefined traditional concepts of aging, and they have mastered the art of doing this mostly in their bedrooms. As the study published in the New England Journal of Medicine highlights, boomers are continuing to depict sexuality as an important element of their lives. They experience only a very slight decrease in sexual intercourse from their age bracket of 50’s up until the 70s. Some of the women defy the stereotypes and remain sexually active and intimate till their 80s.
As Dr. Walter M. Bortz, author of “We Love Too Short and Die Too Long,” stated, “The reality is that older people are a lot sexier than younger people think.” It is a common belief that older women and men shouldn’t have sex, or more so, they ‘cannot have sex’; this is entirely untrue. Studies have depicted that older adults are more in touch with their sexuality concerning performance and attitude, something that many people, including adults themselves, are unaware of.
Baby boomers have redefined aging- 60 is the new 40 now, and this has intrigued the experts to re-analyze all that they know about aging and what has emerged is a more encouraging, motivating and a more positive view of growing old.
Recent research conducted shows that majority of older adults enjoy a quality life and good health into their 80s and beyond. There is some health and cognitive ability decline (which is natural). However, the decline has been less acute as compared to what was previously thought. It is less attached to chronological aging; this means that it is more dependent on the kind of lifestyle these adults choose to adhere.
As Dr. Thomas Cavalieri, the founder of the New Jersey Institute for Successful Aging at Rowan University states, “People can age well. People can live into their 80s and 90s and beyond and be active and functional.”
It is still relatively too early to say why sexual activity results in better brain health, and if it is true for every adult or whether good brain health leads to more sexual activity. There is still extensive research required in this area, to determine how an executive function in the brain impacts sexuality and how much of sexual intercourse prevents dementia and cognitive decline.
However, it is evident that love, kindness, and support are the key to mental well-being and a satisfying sexual relationship between two individuals to prevent dementia and losing your loved one to incurable mental illnesses. Other things include dancing, taking fish oil and vitamins B6 and E supplements, and consuming green tea.
Alycia Gordan is a freelance writer who loves to read and write articles on healthcare technology, fitness and lifestyle. She is a tech junkie and divides her time between travel and writing. You can find her on Twitter: @meetalycia
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