FullMast’s Medical experts share four ways to revitalize your sex and love life
An article published by Global News about ways to revitalize love life explained that sexual anxiety is common.
A 2020 literature review reports that up to 25 per cent of men experience anxiety associated with sexual performance. In another study, researchers found that 34 per cent of the 789 men surveyed reported having a current sexual problem. Sexual health issues are prevalent, yet many individuals are reluctant to get the help they need.
Thankfully the taboos around sexual health are weakening. Darren, an 82-year-old man from Toronto whose real name has been withheld for privacy reasons, said he had no hesitation in seeking professional help for his sexual health concern. “I just wanted to make sure that everything was healthy and that I could keep my lady happy so I talked to my naturopathic clinic and he suggested I talk to Dr. Mayer,” he says.
Dr. Ron Mayer is the Chief Medical Officer at FullMast Men’s Health Clinics in Ontario, specializing in sexual health. He touts the benefits of having a healthy sex life, which includes stronger and more intimate partnerships and a better quality of life. “Having a good sex life just produces more happiness hormones in your brain and that results in a more productive person in general,” Mayer explains.
Dr. Len De Bolster, an expert in pelvic health based in Oakville, shares the many improvements his patients have gained from seeking medical help for their sexual health challenges – not only improvements in the quality of their sex lives but also an increase in psychological health, physical health, mental health as well as a restored sense of intimacy in their relationship.
For some men, sexual health challenges can feel insurmountable, yet there are solutions. Here are four ways you can start reigniting your sex and love life today.
- Seek professional help
Men’s sexual health concerns can range from the quality of their erection to lower libido, no matter their age – and while it may be tempting to try and find a quick-fix solution, be very careful of what you find on the internet, particularly when it comes to products that may cause side effects.
There are varying reasons for the occurrence of sexual health challenges, which Mayer divides into two categories: organic and psychogenic. Organic issues relating to erectile health may require medication or shockwave therapy, while psychogenic issues may require other approaches such as anti-anxiety treatments. Sexual health challenges may also be a symptom of other health issues such as cardiovascular illness – so working with a primary care provider is key for both sexual and overall health.
- Lower your anxiety
The anxiety to perform can have a negative cyclical effect, like a self-fulfilling prophecy. With erectile dysfunction, for example, “when you get anxious about it, you trigger off an inhibitory centre in your brain” that can prevent the erection from happening, Mayer explains. He recommends relaxing the brain and not worrying so much. He teaches his patients to practice sexually focused mindfulness meditation, which involves simple touch therapy with a partner; caressing parts of the body like the face, neck, abdomen and legs and pushing away negative thoughts, and being present with the sensations of touch itself.
- Communicate with your partner
Communication is central to any relationship, particularly partnered sexual relationships, says Mayer. Too often people get shy about their desires, but it’s important to express the things they like and want to experience and the things they dislike – because having those honest conversations will ultimately lead to more enjoyable sex.
De Bolster also urges partners to be supportive in their sexual relationship – “having a supportive partner that’s supportive not only in recognizing the concern of the problem but also supportive in seeking out solutions for the problem as well,” he says. What becomes counterproductive is an unsupportive partner who comments or criticizes, which then increases pressure and anxiety.
- Connect outside the bedroom
What happens outside the bedroom is as important as inside the bedroom when it comes to increasing intimacy. Feelings of connection and intimacy can be cultivated every day, such as by showing appreciation and spending quality time together. Communicate the things you want to experience non-sexually as well, says Mayer, and open yourself up a little bit more.
Ultimately, a healthy sex life is about strengthening relationships and improving one’s quality of life. When asked about improvements to his sex life since seeking professional help, Darren replied, “The process really helped me.”