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Hacia la Promoción de la Salud

Print version ISSN 0121-7577


BOHORQUEZ CARVAJAL, Julián David. SEXUALITY AND SENESCENCE. Hacia promoc. Salud [online]. 2008, vol.13, n.1, pp.13-24. ISSN 0121-7577.

Despite the marked growth of geriatric population around the world, these people oftentimes see how their rights are denied, which is especially evident in regards to their sexuality. Most people see elders’ erotic and affective manifestations as unpleasant, inappropriate, and even pathological, myths that have influenced the health staff that in many occasions does not make the necessary efforts for the diagnosis and treatment of the seniors’ sexual issues, which are very important matters, given their relevance in the physical and psychological welfare of this population group. Western’s historical tradition has rejected old age and eroticism, finally materialized in a repressive clerical model which prohibits any erotic expression that isn’t related to reproduction. The new paradigm established by the sexual revolution is equally excluding concerning senior men and women, privileging a youthful, strong, and goal-oriented sexuality. Erotic experience in old age has particular characteristics due to anatomic and physiological changes that come with aging, as well as the onset of conditions such as polipharmacy and multipathology, that affect sexuality in many ways, defining the need of the intervention of doctors and other kinds of professionals from in ending the myth, opportune consultations, to pharmacological therapy. A development of a “second sexuality language” based on intimacy and communication should be privileged.

Keywords : Sexuality; aging; elderly people.

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