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Safe sex: A vital contributor to wellness and healthy aging by Marilynn Larkin, MA

Despite much evidence to the contrary, the myth that older adults don't have sex persists, sometimes even among older adults themselves, as well as those who work with them. Yet a seminal study published a decade ago in the New England Journal of Medicine documented just the opposite. After interviewing a representative sample of more than 3,000 men and women between the ages of 57 and 85, the authors found that, overall, 73% of individuals ages 57-64 were sexually active, as were 53% of those ages 65-74 and 26% of those ages 75-85. Yet even among those who acknowledge that older people are sexually active, many believe another and potentially more dangerous myth--namely, that these adults aren't at risk of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including HIV.

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