A look at three libido busters faced by baby boomers.

15 03 13 Libido 1

Baby boomers with empty nests expect their golden years to kick off with a bang—particularly in the bedroom department. However, some are dealt unexpected physical and emotional libido busters that can put a damper on desire. For the generation who grew up with sex, drugs and rock ’n’ roll, it can be depressing to be unable to perform in the boudoir the way you used to. We asked Dr. David McKenzie (davidmckenzie.ca), a Vancouver-based couples and sex therapist, for tips on dealing with three intimacy issues that older couples may face and what they can do to reignite the spark between the sheets.

1) The Basics of Physics

The Problem

Physical barriers that people aged 50+ may face in the bedroom include joint pain, arthritis and back aches, each of which can make standby sexual positions nearly impossible. For a long time spooning was considered the only position available for those with these issues, but a recent University of Waterloo study has turned that thinking on its head. In a first-of-its-kind study, researchers fitted sensors to heterosexual couples while they were having intercourse to determine how the spines move in different sex positions. They found that most positions can be modified to spare the spine if patients focus on using their hips and knees to thrust, instead of their backs, and keep a neutral spine position. Using cushions for back support can also help.

Doctor's Orders

Dr. McKenzie recommends that couples first seek a medical doctor’s help for medication to manage their pain. Seeing a sex therapist can also be helpful. “There are certain positions a therapist can suggest to them that they may not have thought of,” explains. He also recommends a kneeling, doggy-style position where the male partner stands behind. The partner in the least amount of pain can do more movement. Using cushions for lower back support can also help in the missionary position, depending on which partner is experiencing the back pain.