Written by FUNMI AKINGBADE - Nigeria
One of the many challenges of a sincere loving and faithful couple is the inadequate exposure to knowledge at the appropriate time. Before their marriage, many couples are clueless about one or two sexual abnormalities in their bodies and because they were not practising premarital sex, they just assume that all is well. Inasmuch as premarital sex is not being encouraged or aided, it is wise for individuals to carry out some screenings at the very early stage of their existence.
Parents should take their children for prenatal examinations so as to detect early any sex and sexuality abnormalities in them. Many communicable diseases that may lead to impotency, erectile dysfunction and frigidity in women and some ill-reproductive conditions could be detected at this stage. Even parents should count taking their children to the hospital for sexual organs examination and screening as part of healthy growing up plans. It is paramount for young adults to frequently screen or examine themselves against sexually-transmitted diseases, undescended testes, HIV/AIDS infection, absence of testes, obstruction of the sperm pipe, abnormal penis growths, abnormal colouration of the penis, abnormal function of the penis, abnormal libido presentation and so on for the men. While for the young lady, it is very important for her to screen against cervical cancer, cervical incompetency, all abnormalities of the womb, all abnormalities of the ovary, fallopian tubes, all hormonal imbalance or malfunctions, all libidoral abnormalities and also frigidity levels.
The breast is a vital sex organ; it should be examined frequently. Ladies should watch out for discolouration, growth, lump, dimple, discharges of any kind such as fluid, pus, oil even as early as age 12 or even lesser. According to researches, it has been discovered that men and women who have the privilege of early exposure to good screening and medical examination always have better, easier and treatable case invariably making them fulfilled married partners in later years than those who do not.
Even after marriage, it is advisable for couples to do a frequent screening once or twice in a year in order to detect early some silent causes of premature ejaculation, weak erection, erectile dysfunction, arteriosclerosis [this is the hardening of the arteries], frigidity, low libido in men and women, low sperm count, low sperm motility, inability to produce semen or sperm cell, rhesus incompatibility, absence of egg in the womb, female hormonal imbalance, ovarian cyst, blocked fallopian tube, inability of the woman to produce fluid for sex during the thrusting in and out, leading to abnormal dryness, inability to get pregnant, frequent loss of pregnancy due to pre-eclampsia or eclampsia and so on.
I also do advocate that when couples know their conditions, they are able to provide adequate information for the doctor or sexologist or sex therapist. They will make sure there is a first aid box in their homes which should contain a thermometer to check the body temperature. The thermometer is needful especially for those couples who want to understand their menstrual cycle or those who desire to know what natural family planning method is all about, or couples who want to know their ovulation period either to detect safe periods for sex or otherwise.
It is also useful for couples as they are able to give medical personnel cogent answers during interrogation. The first aid box should also contain the blood pressure measurements gadget called the sphygmomanometer. This is a must have gadget in the home of every married couple because it does not only help to detect silent killer illnesses and diseases such as hypertension, heart conditions of both husband and wife, even the children, it definitely does help to detect early what can make erection, ejaculation and penis problems become reversible/arousal and libido problem in both man and woman revocable. Sphygmomanometer is a must have in every home.
The sphygmomanometer, otherwise called blood pressure apparatus, has been packaged in such a way that it can easily be put in the handbag, computer bags or any handy pouch for anyone to take about. It has also come in digital, easy to handle pack that even an uneducated person can operate. But an automatic or electronic device is recommended and the instrument generally has the same basic part, inflatable cuff. The inner layer of the cuff is filled with air and squeezes your arm. The outer layer has a fastener to hold the cuff in place. Heart rate and blood flow are automatically calculated by measuring the changes in the motion of your artery as the blood flows through while the cuff deflates. Gauge for readouts. Some blood pressure monitors can take multiple readings and report the averages. Digital monitors that are fitted on the upper arm are generally the most accurate.
I would like to emphasise on the reason for monitoring your blood pressure at home because it is extremely relevant to couples’ sexuality. It can also help with early diagnosis; self-monitoring can help your doctor diagnose high blood pressure earlier. Home monitoring is especially important if you have slightly elevated blood pressure (prehypertension) or another condition that could contribute to high blood pressure, such as diabetes or kidney problems. It can also help track your treatment. The only way to notice change in your lifestyle/eating habit or whether those medications are working, is to check your blood pressure regularly. Monitoring blood pressure changes at home can help you and your doctor to make decisions about your treatment, such as adjusting dosages or changing medications. It also encourages better control of your health. Self-monitoring can give you a stronger sense of responsibility for your health. You may feel even more motivated to control your blood pressure with an improved diet, physical activity and proper medication use.
It helps cut your health care costs: self-monitoring might decrease your number of visits to your doctor or clinic. It will also help check if your blood pressure differs outside the doctor’s office. Some people experience spikes in blood pressure due to anxiety associated with seeing a doctor (this is called white coat hypertension). Other people have normal blood pressure at a clinic but elevated pressure elsewhere (called masked hypertension). Regular monitoring of blood pressure at home can help determine if you have true high blood pressure especially knowing that a couple’s blood pressure has a direct link to the survival of their sex life.
Please note that no matter what type of home blood pressure monitor you choose, proper use requires training and practice. Before using a monitor for the first time, have your doctor watch you use the device to see if you’re doing it properly. Measure your blood pressure twice daily and please do measure your blood pressure at about the same time, same place, same posture each day. The first measurement should be in the morning before eating or taking any medications, and the second in the evening. Each time you measure, take two or three readings to make sure your results are accurate. Don’t measure your blood pressure right after you wake up; give a period of few minutes’ intervals. You can prepare for the day by praying first, then do the measuring, but don’t eat breakfast or take medications before measuring your blood pressure. If you exercise after waking up, take your blood pressure before exercising. Do not measure your blood pressure within 30 minutes of drinking caffeine or Coca-cola, Pepsi or smoking. Avoid food, caffeine, tobacco and alcohol for 30 minutes before taking a measurement. Also, go to the toilet first. A full bladder and bowels may affect your reading and can increase blood pressure slightly.
Find a quiet place to check your blood pressure. Sit correctly with your back straight and supported (on a dining chair, for example, rather than a sofa). Sit quietly before and during monitoring, you will need to listen to your heartbeat. When you’re ready to take your blood pressure, sit for five minutes in a comfortable position with your legs and ankles uncrossed and your back supported against a chair, with your arm resting on a firm surface and your feet flat on the floor. Try to be calm and not think about stressful things. Don’t talk while taking your blood pressure. Make sure your arm is positioned properly and that the cuff around your arm is at the same level as your heart. Always use the same arm when taking your blood pressure. Rest your arm, raised to the level of your heart, on a table, desk or chair arm, your arm should rest comfortably at heart level. You might need to place a pillow or cushion under your arm to elevate it high enough. You may need to support your arm with a cushion and to be sure it is at the correct height. Your arm should be relaxed, not tensed.
Wear loose-fitting clothes like a short sleeved T-shirt so that you can push your sleeve up comfortably and place the cuff on bare skin, not over clothing. Rolling up a sleeve until it tightens around your arm can result in an inaccurate reading, so you may need to slip your arm out of the sleeve. Make sure the middle of the cuff is placed directly above the elbow. Always use the same arm for blood pressure readings, as each arm will give you a slightly different reading. If possible, use the arm that your doctor or nurse uses. Take a repeat reading. Wait for three to four minutes after the first reading, and then take another to check accuracy. Accurately record all your results, record all of your readings, including the date and time. Blood pressure varies throughout the day, and readings are often a little higher in the morning. Also, your blood pressure might be slightly lower at home than in a medical office, typically by about five points.
Take two or three readings, each about two minutes apart, and then work out the average. Some people find that their first reading is much higher than the next readings. If this is true for you, keep taking readings until they level out and stop falling, then use this as your reading. Record your readings but do not round up your measurements up or down – if you don’t keep accurate records of your blood pressure, it may affect health. It’s important to take the readings at the same time each day, such as morning and evening; do not be alarmed if you get an unexpected high reading – a one-off reading may be nothing to worry about. Measure your blood pressure again at another time, but if you find that it continues to be high after a period of time, see your doctor. Understand the readings, optimal blood pressure is less than 120/80 mm Hg (systolic pressure is 120 and diastolic pressure is less than 80). Do not check your blood pressure too often – you may become worried or stressed about small changes in your reading. This can raise your blood pressure in the short-term. Worrying about your blood-pressure reading may actually make it higher.
Many factors affect blood pressure. If one arm consistently has higher blood pressure than the other, that arm should be used to measure your blood pressure. If you did not get an accurate reading, do not inflate the cuff again right away. Wait one minute before repeating the measurement. Start by reapplying the cuff. Follow your doctor’s instructions on when and how often you should measure your blood pressure. Record the date, time, systolic and diastolic pressures. You should also record any special circumstances like any recent exercise, meal, or stressful event. At least once in a year, and especially after you first purchase your blood pressure monitor, bring your monitor with you to your doctor’s clinic to check the machine’s accuracy. This is done by comparing a blood pressure reading from your machine with one from the doctor’s office machine. As much as this is a perquisite for many homes, home blood pressure monitoring is not a substitute for visits to your doctor, and home blood pressure monitors may have some limitations.
False rising: Many things can make your blood pressure rise temporarily for a short time. For example, stress, smoking, extreme cold/ hot temperatures, exercise, caffeine, and certain medicines.
Questions and Answers
How do I keep myself agile for her sexually?
Hi Funmi, you are the best; please keep it up. I have good news for you. I am 61 years old, soon to be grandfather. I just retired and I am so grateful to God for this. I just want to spend the rest of my life with my wife. We have been married for 25 years now. My question is, how do you advise I keep myself agile for her sexually?
Mr. Monday from Abuja
Congratulations, may you live long and witness better days with your life partner. There are just some simple habits that contribute to a healthy heart that you just have to stick to. When your heart is healthy, you will be sexually sound.
You have to manage your blood pressure; high blood pressure is the most significant risk factor for heart diseases. Then you have to get active, getting moderate exercises- 30 minutes a day- helps reduce the risk of heart disease. Also control your cholesterol; too much ‘bad’ cholesterol in the blood can clog arteries, thus increasing the risk for heart attack and stroke. Sir, you also have to eat better, vegetables, fruits, whole grain products and fat –free or low-fat products without many calories. Retirees tend to gain weight easily, please work towards that because obesity is a major risk factor for heart disease. At this stage, you must reduce your blood sugar level. This always leads to diabetes and adult with diabetes are more likely to have heart disease than those without it. Try and stop smoking and consumption of alcohol; these increase the risk for heart disease as well as cancer and other diseases. Note sir that getting drunk does not enhance sexual performance but desire for sex. Lastly, understand your body language and know when to give yourself a sexual break to be the best. You can go on a leisure trip together with your wife.