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I have been a registered nurse, nurse practitioner and most importantly a patient advocate for over 20 years. I have worked in hospitals, homes and as a private consultant, always teaching patients how to speak up for themselves and to make well informed healthcare decisions that are right for them and help them to avoid all types of Medical Errors. The many things I have seen in healthcare led me write "What Did the Doctor Just Say." In it are all the steps every patient needs to take to remain safe in the healthcare system and avoid medical errors. My personal goal is help to save 100,000 people from the horrors of a medical error and I wrote What Did the Doctor Just Say? to help make that happen.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

How To Get the Health Benefits of Sex Without Having A Sexual Partner

The health benefits of having sex; stress reduction, decreased blood pressure, happiness, and a youthful glow do not occur just because you’re having sex, they are the result of the chemical reactions that occur in the body and the brain during sex.  

Many people are missing out on these very beneficial chemical reactions and the good feelings they bring about because they do not have partners or they have partners who do not or cannot satisfy them. 
No matter what the reason, whether it be divorce, separation, death, military deployment, illness, or just not having a suitable or healthy partner many people will have periods in their lives when they do not have a satisfying lover. And those who are married are not immune from this state of being. In fact it has been reported that up to 40% of American marriages are sexless. So how can those who do not have partners or who have a partner that is not getting the job done enjoy the mental physical and emotional benefits of sex.

Sex for One: The first thing that comes to mine when discussing sex without a partner is self-loving, also known, as masturbation. Masturbation is natural in the human experience, even while in the womb humans engage in this activity.             It's "safe sex" it has no risk of disease and is readily available. In her book Sex for One Betty Dodson helps to release the taboo of self-love and takes you on a journey toward becoming your very own lover for life. In it you'll learn satisfying techniques that you can later teach to a partner should you choose to find one.

Self loving is a liberating activity that decreases the stress, anxiety and desperation  that can evolve during long periods of abstinence. Having a healthy supply of sex toys, setting aside special time for you to do you to get to know each other better     and setting the mood will enhance your experience and make the activity 
really worth wild and a high point in your self loving life. There are several other things you can do outside of self-loving that can render the same physical and emotional benefits as having sex for example there is;

Massage Therapy: During sex and massage the love hormone oxytocin that brings feelings of warmth, comfort, and love of life is emitted, as is serotonin, the major chemical involved in the relief of depression. According to studies conducted by the National Institute of Health massage therapy can ease feelings of isolation, depression, anxiety and pain.

If you’ve ever had a massage you know how satisfying and soothing they can be. After having massage the feelings of floating on air and wanting a good nap can 
easily alleviate intense sexual desire and leave you feeling good all over.

Having a massage on a regular basis can be a part of a very satisfying sex for one    lifestyle. You can find out more about massage and how to choose a massage  therapist by visiting the American Massage Therapy Association website. And you can find inexpensive massage at massage therapy schools by visiting their student training clinics 

Yoga: Many studies have shown that yoga can decrease blood pressure, ease pain, decrease feelings of depression and anxiety, improve muscle tone and increase circulation, all benefits of having sex that the National Institute of Health attribute to yoga. 

Personally I believe yoga is heaven sent. It has helped
me to keep my youthful glow and my sanity. As a person who suffers from recurrent bouts
of depression I swear by the healing and satisfying effects of a yoga practice.

Aromatherapy: According the National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy, aromatherapy produces both emotional and physical effects that include stress relief, sleep improvement, mood boosting, hormone regulation that will ease PMS, muscle relaxation, immune system stimulation, and enhance blood circulation. Two of the most commonly used aromatherapy oils Lavender and Frankensince oils can produce the same chemical responses that one has when deeply in love and help you to feel relaxed and satisfied.                                         

These natural therapies and others like regular exercise, having a spiritual practice, and a love life with friends and family where you actively hug, smile and laugh are all ways bring about mental, physical and emotional satisfaction and will help you to have a very loving life.

1 comment:

Registered Nurse, Nurse Practitioner, Healthcare Consultant & Patient Advocate said...

Lynn, I love your blog. Your articles are helpful, clear and explicit, which
is just great!

You advocate some wonderful activities that offer the benefits of sex (that
is, sexual intercourse). Your list includes self-loving (masturbation),
although self-stimulation may be a more precise phrase, as it can be part of
broader self-loving (versus self-hating). Then too you advocate massage,
yoga, and aromatherapy - which I agree are great stress relievers. In
passing you also mention "a love life with friends and family where you
actively hug, smile and laugh" along with natural therapies, regular
exercise and establishing a spiritual practice.

While I concur with your comments, I think you need to put greater emphasis
on the value of friendship. More importantly you might wish to emphasize how
physical intimacy other than sex (intercourse) offers parallel benefits. I'd
like to elaborate on both matters, knowing that space limitations prevented
you from commenting further in your blog message.

In my view forming friendships needs to be the "first order of business",
whether or not a person has a sex partner, since - as you've noted, close
friendships can provide some physical and emotional benefits that parallel
positive outcomes of sex (intercourse).

To elaborate, endorphins often flow when you have close friends. A joyful
sense of being together with people who have a lot in common with you can
serve you well. Simply doing things with friends, whether conversing, going
to the theater, helping each other find a job, etc., can reduce pain and
stress as you implicitly acknowledge. But emphasizing why that's the case
is important: It's because you know someone is there for you - someone you
can trust and who can trust you as well. Most of us can get an emotional
high by confirming each other's doubts, defeats and victories, and going the
extra mile for each other, however platonically.

Second, consider the "sexless" relationship with another person with whom
you are otherwise physically intimate. In such cases intercourse can occur
infrequently or never due to medical or psychological factors including ED
and a low libido. I refer to this in my book, Conquer Prostate Cancer: How
Medicine, Faith, Love and Sex Can Renew Your Life, and in its companion
blog, Physical intimacy of this sort is worth
its weight in gold, particularly when you are in a committed relationship
that permits touching, kissing, and various forms of sensuality. It's
important to point out that you can still engage physically with another
person without intercourse, with all the good feelings that getting naked
together brings, despite imposed or chosen sexual abstinence. Putting it
differently, "making love" is not always the same thing as "having sex," but
it brings plenty of comparable benefits for the short term and longer!

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