Gothenburg: Older people are having more sex than ever, according to a new survey from Sweden.
At a time when the health of many older people is in decline, it seems that an active sex life is on the rise.
Not only are they more likely to have sex at least once a week, they are also much more likely to report high rates of satisfaction, says research carried out among the 70+ age group of the Swedish city of Gothenburg.
The research was carried out in four different time periods – 1971-72, 1976-77, 1992-93 and 2000-01 – for the study which is published in the British Medical Journal.
Men in their eighth decade are less likely to have erectile dysfunction than men the same age 30 years ago, while women aged 70 are much more likely to report having orgasms.
The responses from the four groups, totalling more than 1500 people, showed that over the 30-year period, the proportion of married 70-year-old men reporting sexual intercourse in the past year increased from 52 to 68 per cent, while for married women, the figure increased from 38 to 56 per cent.
Among unmarried men and women, the proportion rose from 30 to 54 per cent for men, and from 0.8 to 12 per cent among women.
Those reporting sex at least weekly rose from 10 to 31 per cent among both married and unmarried men, and from 9 to 26per cent among all women.
The proportion of men reporting high satisfaction with their sex lives rose from 58 per cent in 1976-77 to 71 per cent in 2000-01. Among women, the satisfaction rating rose from 41 to 62 per cent.
Men were much less likely to report being impotent (down from 18 to 8 per cent), while women were more likely to say they “always or usually” had an orgasm (up from 59 to 83 per cent).