Campaign aims to lower rates of STDs among seniors
The rising rate of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) among senior citizens has been in the news quite a bit lately, as the finding came as a surprise to many people. Even more shocking than the thought of grandma getting chlamydia is a new ad campaign aimed at raising awareness of safer sex among the older population.
CBS recently reported on SaferSex4Seniors.org, a website that features a video on its homepage of gray-haired individuals fully clothed in various sexual positions. At the end of the clip, the screen reads, "While there are many ways to do it, there's only one way to do it safely."
But the campaign isn't just about shock value, it's also educational. The website features categories where seniors can find information about adult products and lubricant, condoms, STDs, relationships and sexual health, among other topics.
The rise in rates of STDs among seniors has been attributed to more sexual activity in this population and lower rates of condom use. In fact, one study from Massachusetts General Hospital found that men older than 50 are six times less liable to use a condom during sex than 20-something men.
An article on the AARP website reports that the advent of Viagra and online dating may have contributed to the spike of infection among seniors. The report also cites a study from the journal Sexually Transmitted Infections which states that STD rates among people older than 45 doubled within the last decade.
All sexually active individuals should be aware of the basic tenets of safer sex: regular STD testing and proper, consistent condom use. Testing is especially important for individuals with multiple sexual partners.