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A Low Libido Has Multiple Causes - And Cures

Discussing concerns with your physician can put you on the path toward more frequent, physical intimacy.

A Low Libido Has Multiple Causes - And Cures

Experiencing A Decrease in Sexual Desire?

Physical intimacy is considered one of the most significant methods for couples to display their mutual love and affection. When one partner’s desire for sexual intimacy is stronger than the other’s, it can negatively affect the couple’s relationship. If you’re feeling apathetic toward snuggling up with your spouse, you’re not as unusual as you may feel.

Many women experience occasional decreases in sexual desire at some point in their lives. Although it’s common to experience a lowering of spontaneous sexual desire with aging, decreased libido can occur in women of all ages. In fact, there is research demonstrating that more than 40 percent of women between the ages of 18-59 experience some form of sexual dysfunction, from a decrease in desire to pain during intercourse.

Reasons for a Low Libido

Often low libido is simply related to lifestyle factors such as balancing multiple societal roles. Intimacy may take a backseat to other family and career-related responsibilities. And women are much more complicated than men in how they move toward sexual arousal. Unlike the vast majority of men, women often do not have a strong drive or urge for sexual relations. Instead, they are more motivated by a need for intimacy. This motivation makes them receptive to sexual overtones and stimuli.

However, if lack of sexual desire persists, and it’s distressing, you may be experiencing a form of female hypoactive sexual desire disorder. The term refers to the persistent lack or absence of sexual desire, and it may be the result of a variety of physical or emotional factors.

There are medical conditions that are associated with a low libido, including hormone changes due to menopause, being postpartum or breastfeeding. Depression, neurological disorders and chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and cancer can all influence desire. In addition, one of the side effects of certain medications can be a decrease in drive. Vaginal pain can quickly dampen your motivation. Emotional and psychological factors can affect desire, including:

  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • Recent surgery that impacts your sexual image
  • Fundamental problems within the relationship

Treating Low Libido and Lack of Desire

Sexual health is part of your overall health. The first step to addressing the issue is to find a physician with whom you can have an open and honest discussion. Your physician can then help you to discover any underlying problems and offer advice on methods for improving your condition or receptivity. To start, your physician will review your medical history, ask you about any medications you’re taking and ask about your relationship with your spouse aside from sexual intimacy.

A treatment approach might include adjusting current medications, a referral for specialized counseling, or hormone therapy or a combination of approaches. Lifestyle and stress management techniques might also be recommended, such as making sure you’re exercising and eating healthy.

It’s important to know that infrequent sexual expression is not a sign of a sure personal problem or a relationship in trouble if neither partner is complaining. Fluctuations in sex drive are a normal part of every relationship. What’s important is that you and your partner maintain your emotional intimacy, communicate openly, and share the same desires, wishes and goals for the relationship.

For more information on menopause, download the Free Guide to Managing Menopause.