12 On Your Side: Senior citizens among fastest-growing age group for contracting STDs

By: Elizabeth Owens Email
By: Elizabeth Owens Email
Senior sex

Senior citizens are one of the fastest-growing age groups to contract sexually transmitted diseases. (WRDW-TV / May 31, 2012)

News 12 at 6 o'clock / Thursday, May 31, 2012

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- Doctors say you may want to think about giving your parents or grandparents the "Birds and the Bees" talk.

Thanks to modern-day medicine, more than 80 percent of senior citizens are having sex at least once a month.

"As often as I can. Two or three times a week," said 76-year-old Rosa Crockett.

She and her husband of 56 years still have a very active sex life.

"I don't think it shocks senior citizens. It might shock their children, but I don't think it shocks senior citizens at all," said Eric Holgate, a pharmacist at DurMed who mixes prescriptions to help seniors extend their loved life. "Oh, no question about it, they are. They having sex all time."

However, the generation that brought free love into the world is now facing a growing problem. Studies show senior citizens are the fastest-growing age group contracting STDs.

"I do think the older generation is also a little less receptive to using devices like condoms," said Dr. Daron Farris of GHS Medical Center.

There were more than 2,500 cases of syphilis among adults ages 45 to 65 in 2010 -- that's up from 900 a decade earlier.

The problem is so bad that the state of Florida issued a risque public service announcement teaching seniors about safe sex.

"You know, when you are younger, you're afraid you're going to get pregnant, and as you get older, at my age, it doesn't matter," Crocker said.

The Crockers are in a committed monogamous relationship, but doctors are trying to teach their friends about safe sex.

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