So, your sex drive isn’t what it was 20 years ago. Don’t worry – you’re most definitely not alone. It’s normal to go through periods of a having a lower sexual libido or even apathy when it comes to sex altogether, especially as you enter your forties. Taking everything into consideration, from everyday stressors to fluctuating hormones, sex might be the last thing on your mind.
But it’s important to remember that your forties aren’t the end of your sex life – in fact, you’re just getting warmed up. You’re experienced enough to know what you like, you’ve grown familiar and confident in your skin and body as is, and you’re unafraid to express what you want.
In fact, a study conducted at The University of Manchester involving 7,000 retirees concluded that more than half of men and a third of women over the age of 70 are still having sex – so yes, there’s no age limit to pleasure.
So, how do you secure your spot in that statistic and make sure that your sexuality doesn’t get put on the backburner in your 40s? We’ve got you covered – let us walk you through a list of 6 things that you can do right now to get that libido right back up.
Exercising is a great way to stay sexually active, since it boosts your testosterone levels, which helps particularly with menopause-related reduced libido and arousal. It also helps you increase your energy and get more in shape, which in turn helps you feel more confident.
In addition to exercising, you should also practice Kegel exercises, which help you strengthen your pelvic floor. What many people don’t know about improving those muscles is that they can give you more control during sex and more intense orgasms. Yes, you heard that right.
Try new things
With all the responsibility thrust onto you in your 40s – a home, car payments, kids, work, etc. – many couples fall into the trap of being too tired to spice things up in the bedroom, opting instead for the tried and true. It doesn’t help that you may have been having sex with the same person for decades.
If you want to go back to having the toe-curling sex you used to tell your girls about, you need to understand that it takes work. You need to make an effort to be intimate with your partner and try new things in the bedroom. Intimacy can mean anything from cuddling, kissing or even giving your partner a sensual massage with oils.
With regards to trying out new things, this can be anything from new sex positions, to new fantasies and role plays, to new sex toys. From buying new lingerie to adding new dildos for women to your collection, a fun and sexy activity is to browse your favorite online sex store with your partner to see what speaks to you both – the anticipation will build while you wait for your items to come in the mail, and by the time they do, you’ll be ripping each other’s clothes off in excitement.
Eat foods that boost your libido
A great way to improve your sex drive is to by eating libido-boosting foods. Herbal supplements like gingko, ginseng, and maca not only have incredible health benefits, but they also work as natural aphrodisiacs.
Saffron (the spice) is also frequently said to be good for boosting the female sex drive, and even for increasing vaginal lubrication. Other foods that are rumored to increase sexual libido are apples, watermelon, avocado, pomegranate juice, asparagus, red wine and fenugreek.
But even though a glass of red wine can make you feel sexy and loose, you shouldn’t overindulge on the alcohol. Drinking in excess will actually have the opposite effect, and make you less aroused. Another bad habit to quit if you want to improve your sex drive is smoking – it decreases your libido a ton. If you kick the cigarettes to the curb, you might be surprised at how your bedroom life transforms.
According to a recent study, a mixture of physical and emotional factors cause about a third of women aged 18-59 to suddenly lose interest in sex. Considering all the responsibility women have traditionally had on their shoulders including everything from childbirth to raising children and balancing their fluctuating hormones, it doesn’t come as a surprise that all they want to do at night is pull a pillow over their heads and fall asleep.
Job stress, media influence about women becoming less attractive as they age and personal issues can also lead to women having a decreased sexual libido. Stress and anxiety are two of the biggest libido killers – they increase cortisol, which in turn decreases testosterone levels.
If you find yourself feeling less sexual due to stress, try and practice some stress-management techniques, such as tai-chi, yoga, breathing exercises, dancing, listening to music, and meditation. You can even practice any of these with your partner, to de-stress and get in the mood together.
Get more sleep
Sleep is an important part of your health overall. It’s also crucial to your sexual wellness. Getting enough sleep helps decrease your stress levels, gives you a mood boost and even increases your sexual desire – so, make sure that you’re getting a minimum of 7 hours of sleep per night.
If you struggle with falling asleep, remaining asleep or falling back asleep after waking up in the middle of the night, try and dissect what it could be that is disturbing your sleep pattern. Are you on your phone or laptop right before bed? Is there light coming in from a window that is disturbing you? Does your room get uncomfortably hot or cold in the middle of the night?
Try and create a personalized, calm and relaxing bedtime routine before slipping in between the sheets. Also, try to fall asleep and wake up at the same time every day.
Have open communication with your partner
If you feel like you’ve lost your mojo in the bedroom, have a conversation about it with your partner. Be open and honest with them about how you’re feeling, and how they can support you. Maybe there are things they can do to help, such as take stuff off your plate so that you’re less stressed, or try new things in the bedroom that you two haven’t done for a while, or ever.
Talking about what you like and don’t like is crucial to a successful relationship, and a successful sex life. Being open and honest might just be the thing you need to take your sex life to the next level in this new decade. Finally, never put therapy off the table – a sex therapist can help you decipher exactly what might be killing your drive, and how to get your needs met, for an overall better sex life for both partners, filled with more pleasure, more enjoyment, and more sex.