Libido is defined as a conscious or unconscious sexual desire and loss of libido is defined as a sexual dysfunction that is related to the loss of sexual desires or sexual drive. Low libido, loss of libido, low sex drive, and impaired sexual interest have the same meaning and that is a loss of interest in having sexual activity. Sexual desires are produced by the combination of biological and personal factors and low sexual desires can have a number of causes such as medical conditions, psychological factors, medications, and surgical procedures.
1. Low Testosterone
The low testosterone level in men is not uncommon and sexual symptoms like low libido correlates with a low testosterone level. More generalized symptoms like lack of energy, loss of motivation, inability to concentrate, depressed mood and sleep disturbances are frequently seen in people with low testosterone levels. Testosterone is one of the most important male sex hormones that play a key role in the development of male reproductive tissues and testosterone in men is secreted almost solely from the testes. Men with total testosterone less than 200 ng/dl have testosterone deficiency and there are various factors that could be the cause of the decline in the level of testosterone. According to the studies, an improvement in the libido was seen after testosterone therapy. When men suffer from low testosterone, they also experience difficulties in:
- Emotional functioning
- Mental functioning
- Sexual functioning
- Physical functioning
Aging plays an important role and has a potential to affect sexual function and with an advancing age, relationship factors such as a presence of a partner, sexual function, and feelings for the partner may change. Various hormonal and psychological factors take place throughout the life and with age, the level of hormones fluctuates and changes in the factors occurs. Such changes have a direct impact on the sexual health of a person and lead to various sexual dysfunctions. The low testosterone level in the body is often regarded as age related and testosterone plays an important role in sexual desires. Also, many psychological and social factors such as poor body image, feeling less attractive due to changes, feeling less masculine, performance anxiety and feeling of rejection throw a negative impact on the libido.
3. Diabetes Mellitus
Many people with diabetes mellitus experience sexual problems and these sexual problems also include decreased or absence of desire for sexual activity and decreased or absent sexual response. Diabetes mellitus is a chronic disease which is associated with various other health problems including sexual dysfunctions and disorders. Diabetes mellitus is defined as a condition in which the blood glucose level in the body becomes excessively high. People suffering from diabetes can develop sexual problems due to the damage to the nerves and small blood vessels. The desires are aroused when the brain sends the nerve signal to the muscles and when these nerve signals are damaged due to an increased blood glucose level, it leads to the development of sexual problems.
Mental illness is known to have a large effect on the sexual function and expressions and various studies suggest that that is an association between depression and sexual dysfunction and decreased libido is the most often reported problem in the people suffering from depression. Depression has become a common mental health disorder which is affecting millions of people worldwide and it shares symptoms like lack of an ability to experience pleasure, the absence of interest, low self esteem, and lack of energy. These symptoms of depression diminish the individual’s ability to maintain the intimate relationship with their partners and it causes difficulties in the sexual relationships. Not only depression but antidepressant pills are also associated with decreased libido and reduced sexual functioning.
5. Sleep disorders
Problems with sleep or the lack of sleep are linked with anxiety and negative emotional response on healthy individuals. Evidence indicates that sleep disorders have an impact on sexual functioning as well. It often leads to decreased sexual desires and lack of interest in indulging in any sexual activity with a partner. Sleep disorders are often accompanied by the feeling of anxiety and anxiety itself is one of the major factors that affects the libido. Also, any disorder with the sleep leads to fluctuations in the level of hormones and changes in hormones are closely related to the sexual functioning.