Episode 43: STIs, the sting in the tail
Being over 50 doesn't mean that you can't contract them
This week, Suzanne and Peter discuss the impact of STIs among the older age group. Recent statistics have shown that while there has been a sudden percent decline in the numbers of 18 to 24-year-olds contracting an STI, among the age group 50 to 64, the numbers have shown an increase by around 14%. This is probably a function of several different factors working together, but in general, we can say that it goes alongside an increased divorce rate among older people, which almost inevitably leads to more dating, more opportunities and more sex.
One might will argue that this is simply the price that has to be paid for sexual liberation and increased sexual activity and a later age, but this shouldn't mean that we do not take this rise in STIs among the older population seriously. The many different infections that one can contact, from herpes to HIV, are serious and long-lasting health problems that can be avoided by the simple use of a condom. It is certainly the case that older men, especially, have an aversion to the use of condoms, especially given the case that conception is no longer likely to follow from intercourse.
However, this is one area where older people can certainly learn from the young and think about the ways in which these potentially serious health problems can be avoided. Sex can be a wonderful and fun part of growing older, and it would be a shame to spoil it for want of a dash of rubber.