Women who have heard for years that they face a declining sex life can take heart in new research that says sex gets better with age. University of Pittsburgh researchers found that while the frequency of sex declines, the quality makes up for it. “We were surprised to find a group of women who said that sex actually got better for them as they got older,” says lead author Holly Thomas. “As doctors we were assuming that sex gets worse for women.” After interviewing 39 women between ages 46 and 59, Thomas and her team cited several factors behind women who experienced a better sex life, including knowing their bodies better and increased self confidence to ask for what they want. A larger survey from Case Western of 505 women between the ages of 40 and 75 found much the same, reports Today.
"They had a better knowledge and understanding of their own bodies as they got older. And they felt more comfortable and empowered to communicate their sexual needs to their partner than when they were younger," Thomas said, per WebMD. When women weren't experiencing good sex, they pointed to other side of the bed, citing their partner's low libido or erectile dysfunction. Lower libido was also a complaint of some women in the study, along with vaginal dryness. The new research builds on Thomas' previous findings that women over 60 were having a lot of sex, contrary to popular notions. Other research has found that older women who have frequent sex experience benefits such as lower blood pressure, while the opposite is true for older men who risk heart attacks. (How good is sex in Sweden? Researchers will find out.)