Following our blog post last week on safer sex as people age, we have been joined by Councillor Maggie Mansell from Croydon (South of London) who is proposing to publish a leaflet aimed at those over 60 with an active sex life which would be distributed through pharmacies and GPs.
The Councillor recognises that older people are fitter and more active than before and embarking on new sexual relationships when their children leave home or after a divorce, she says “The over-60s are fitter and more active than previous generations. They started their sex lives after the pill and before AIDS, and did not get used to using condoms…The over-60s do not need contraception, but they do need modern advice.”
The numbers of men and women over the age of 45 diagnosed with an STI doubled between 2000 and 2009, official figures show.
Sexual health charity FPA said many older people were coming out of long-term relationships and meeting new partners through dating websites and holidays, but appeared to be “oblivious” about the need for safe sex.
Croydon Council is aiming to reduce unwanted pregnancies and rates of HIV and other STIs, by launching its first ever sexual health strategy.
The strategy targets young people, and includes expanding the supply of free condoms to under-25s, running sexual health drop-in clinics at colleges, and expanding the number of sites offering Chlamydia screening and treatment.
Councillor Margaret Mead, Croydon’s cabinet member for adult services and health recognises the importance of including all ages in this strategy: “This strategy is about improving the health and well-being of communities and ensuring residents have the knowledge to make the right choices regarding their sexual health….We also aim to encourage people to change their behaviour for their own personal well-being and for the benefit of making the most effective use of health care budgets.”
Better2Know knows that the average age of people accessing its services is over the national average age, and has long catered to people of all ages who value their privacy and want fast results. We believe our patients do not want to attend sexual health clinics where they may be seen by someone they know. We have a wide range of screens and offer all STDs on an individual basis so that you can choose the right tests for you.