What to Ask: Sexual Health

Research surveys suggest that sexual interest and activity decrease with age for both men and women. However, surveys cannot easily distinguish effects due to aging from those due to social customs, values, or having a partner. For most older adults, sex remains an important part of a full and enjoyable life.

Here are questions you can ask your healthcare provider about sexuality:

  1. Am I too old to still have sex?
  2. How can I tell if my sexual problems are due to old age or disease?
  3. Is sexual counseling covered by Medicare?
  4. I don't feel comfortable talking with my doctor about my sex life. How can I find someone else to discuss this with?
  5. I take many medications for my health. Is there a way to find out which ones might affect my sexual functioning?
  6. Since I (or my spouse) had a heart attack I am worried that sex may not be safe. What do you think?
  7. Arthritis pain makes it difficult to have intercourse. Is there anything that can be done about this?


  1. I have vaginal pain during intercourse. Why does this happen and what can be done?
  2. Is taking estrogen safe for me? Will this improve my interest in and enjoyment of sex?


  1. Is using Viagra and other medications a good option for me?
  2. I have trouble having an erection and I can't (or don't want to) take medications like Viagra. What other options are there?