Low libido reflects a diminishing interest in sexual intercourse. Men and women experience a decrease in their sex drive, quite often. It is common to experience low libido and is more a natural thing than you might think.
Occasionally, it's normal to lose interest in sex, and rates of libido differ across life. It's also common for your desire to often not suit your partner's. Low libido, however, may lead to anxiety for certain people for a long period of time. Often it may be a sign of an underlying medical problem.
Although low libido can trigger stress in a relationship, causing fears and remorse in all parties involved, when the root cause is identified it can be treated effectively. Often low libido may be based on a single factor, but is most commonly correlated with several causes that each contribute in their very own way. Low testosterone, drugs, insomnia, chronic illness and fatigue are among some of the most common causes.
If the problem is psychological your doctor may recommend counselling. For certain instances, a weak libido leads to a need for a closer relationship with your partner — one that is not only physical but also personal. It can help to speak to a psychiatrist, either alone or with your partner, about these things.
A drop in sex drive may result both from medical disorders and from psychiatric or emotional problems. Sexual suppressed desire is a form of sexual dysfunction which affects both men and women alike. Lower testosterone levels have been linked with a decrease in sexual libido in males.
Additionally, women often experience a reduction in sex drive during the menopause process. Many forms of chronic conditions and chronic pain can also contribute to a decline in sexual desire, possibly due to a mixture of the disease's physical symptoms as well as the psychological burden connected with a chronic condition.
Potential Causes of Low Sex Drive (Libido) In Men
Low Testosterone Levels -
Testosterone is a major hormone in males. For guys, it's produced mainly in the testicles.
Testosterone is important for body strengthening and bone density and increasing the development of sperm. Your testosterone levels are also an essential element in determining your sex drive.
Ordinary levels of testosterone will differ. Your desire for sex drops as the testosterone levels go down.
A natural element of ageing is decreasing testosterone. A dramatic reduction in testosterone, though, will lead to reduced libido.
Speak to the doctor if you feel this could be a concern for you. You can take medication or gels to improve your testosterone levels.
Depression affects every aspect of a person's life. Individuals with depression show little to no pleasure in things that they once considered pleasurable, like sex.
Low libido is often a side effect with certain antidepressants including:
- SNRIs such as duloxetine (Cymbalta)
- SSRIs such as fluoxetine (Prozac), and sertraline (Zoloft).
However, the bupropion containing norepinephrine and dopamine reuptake inhibitor (NRDI) has not been proven to improve libido.
If you are taking antidepressants and you have weak libido, speak with the psychiatrist. They could change your dosage or make you turn to another drug to fix your symptoms.
Chronic Health Conditions
When you're not feeling comfortable because of the symptoms of a chronic health problem, like chronic pain, sex is likely to be low on your priority list.
Certain diseases, including cancer, can also reduce sperm counts.
Many chronic conditions that can affect the libido typically involve:
- Type 2 diabetes
- High blood pressure
- High cholesterol
- Chronic lung, back, kidney, and liver failure
If you have a serious medical condition, speak to your partner about how you can be sexually intimate during this period. Also, you should try seeing a marriage counsellor or sex therapy for your problems.
When you're disturbed by high-stress situations or times, sexual attraction can diminish. That is because your hormone levels can also be affected by stress. In moments of stress your arteries can narrow down. This narrowing reduces blood flow and could be the cause of erectile dysfunction.
One report published in Scientific Research and Essays supported the fact that stress has a clear impact on male and female sexual problems.
Another study of veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) showed that the stress condition more than tripled their chance of sexual dysfunction.
Stress is impossible to avoid. Problems with marriages, divorce, meeting a loved one's death, financial difficulties, a new baby or a busy work environment are a few of the events in life which can profoundly impact the desire for sex.
Techniques for managing stress, such as relaxation exercises, meditation and talking to a therapist, can help.
Self-esteem is characterized as an individual's general view about his or her own self. Low self-esteem, low morale and negative body image will take an effect on your mental well-being and health.
When you believe you're unattractive or unpleasant, intimate experiences are likely to be dampened. Not liking what you see in the mirror might also lower your sex drive completely.
Low self-esteem can also trigger sexual performance anxiety that can contribute to issues with erectile dysfunction and decreased sexual desire.
With time, problems of self-esteem can contribute to broader mental health issues, such as depression, anxiety, and substance or alcohol abuse — all of which have been related to low libido.
Testosterone rates, related to libido, are at their highest while people are in their late adolescence.
It can take much longer in your older years to get orgasms, ejaculate and get aroused. Your erections would not be as hard, so the penis can take more time to get erect.
Nevertheless, there are medications available which can help to overcome these issues.
A decreased testosterone level is a major culprit, which usually happens as people mature. It will wreak havoc on the libido along with reduced energy levels and weakening muscle tone.
Restless Legs Syndrome
Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) is the involuntary urge to move your legs. Research showed people with restless leg syndrome are at a greater likelihood of developing erectile dysfunction compared to those without restless leg syndrome. Erectile dysfunction happens when a man is unable to get an erection or sustain it.
Researchers observed in the study that men who had episodes of restless leg syndrome at least five times per month were around 50 per cent more likely to have erectile dysfunction than men who had no restless leg syndrome.
More frequently, men who had bouts of restless leg syndrome were also much more prone to become impotent.
Low Libido in Women
The sexual interests of women vary significantly spontaneously over the years. Ups and downs usually correspond with the start or end of a relationship, or with significant shifts in life, such as childbirth, menopause, or disease. Few medications used to cure mood disorders could also induce low libido in women.
If your lack of involvement in sex persists or resumes and triggers emotional discomfort, you may have a disorder that is termed as sexual interest/arousal disorder.
But in order to seek the treatment, you need not follow this medical definition. If you're troubled by low sex drive or reduced sex appeal, there are improvements in lifestyle and sexual approaches that will most often place you in the right mood with an increased sexual desire. Many medications also can bring comfort.
Symptoms Of Low Libido in Women
If you feel like having sex less frequently than your partner does, at your point of life, none of you is actually beyond the norm for couples — but your differences can cause distress in your relationship.
Likewise, even though your libido may be less than it used to be, your relationship may be better than it has ever been. In conclusion: There is no magic number describing how low your sex desire is. It varies among women.
Low sex drive signs in women involve:
Causes of Low Libido
Sexual attraction is based on a dynamic combination with several factors that influence relationships, including physical and emotional well-being, perceptions, values, lifestyle as well as your current relationship. If you have a problem in either of these places it will influence your sexual desire.
Painful sexual intercourse (dyspareunia) may lead to women losing libido. Bad body image, anxiety, low self-esteem, fatigue, weak communication, lack of or loss of confidence, and unresolved disputes are psychological causes that may be associated with low libido. Any medications, such as some antidepressants, can also suppress sexual desire.
Physical factors -
A wide variety of illnesses, behavioural modifications and medications can contribute to reduced sex desire, including -
- Sexual issues - If you have sexual discomfort or can't climax, that will reduce your desire for sex.
- Medical illness - Many non-sexual disorders, including obesity, cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, coronary artery disease, and neurological diseases, may impair sex drive.
- Medicines - Many prescription medications are considered to reduce the sex drive, particularly certain antidepressants called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors.
- Lifestyle Habits - A glass of wine may put you in mood, but your sex drive can be impaired by the consumption of a lot of alcohol. The same refers to street substances. Smoking also reduces blood supply, which can make arousal slow.
- Surgery - Any surgery that has to do with your breasts or genital tract will affect your body appearance, sexual function and sexual desire.
- Fatigue - Care for young children or elderly parents can lead to exhaustion which can lead to low sex drive. Exhaustion from sickness or surgery may play a role too.
Hormonal Changes -
Alterations in your hormone levels will affect your sex drive. This can take place during:
- Menopause - During the transition to menopause, estrogen levels decrease. This may make you less involved in sexual intimacy and can cause dry vaginal tissue, leading to unpleasant or awkward sex. Although many women tend to have satisfactory intercourse after and beyond menopause, some report a lagging libido during this hormonal change.
- Breastfeeding and pregnancy - Changes in hormone during birth, will place a damper on sex drive only after delivering a baby and during breast-feeding. Fatigue, body image changes, and the stresses of breastfeeding or caring for a new infant will also lead to changes in your sexual desire.
Psychological Causes -
Your state of mind can influence your desire to have sex. Low sex drive has multiple psychiatric factors such as:
- Mental health issues, such as anxiety or depression.
- Stress, for instance, financial burden or tension at work.
- Weak body image.
- Low self-esteem.
- Background of sexual or physical violence.
- Previous sexual encounters which were unpleasant.
Relationship issues -
For many women, an important prelude to physical intimacy is emotional closeness. And when there is less desire for each other, the sex drive decreases. So complications in your relationship can be a significant factor of low sex drive.
Low interest in sex is mostly the product of unresolved problems like:
- Lack of connection with your partner.
- Conflicts or fights unsolved.
- Poor communication of sexual desires and needs.
- Trust issues.
Treatment of Low Libido For Both Men and Women
Treatment of low libido often relies on coping with the root issue.
When an underlying medical problem induces reduced libido, you may need to switch medications. If there are psychological reasons behind your weak libido, you may need to see a psychiatrist for relationship therapy.
You should even take action yourself to improve your libido. The following behaviour will increase your libido:
- A healthy lifestyle.
- Having adequate sleep.
- Handling stress.
- Eat a healthy diet.
Speaking to a sex therapist or psychiatrist who is skilled to discuss sexual issues and will assist with decreased sex drive. Therapy also involves education about sexual response and strategies. A psychiatrist or psychologist would usually make suggestions for reading books or exercises you can do with your partners. Couples counselling that discusses marital problems will also serve to increase trust and attraction feelings.
Tags: How to increase male libido, What causes low libido in females, When a woman loses interest in a man
John Mattew is a passionate writer with a professional degree in Creative Writing. He specializes in the Sexual Health category for Cheap Medicine Shop and spends most of the time discussing the research studies with his colleagues. He is a very organised individual and makes sure to inculcate discipline in whatever he does. Fitness and sports are two topics, John can talk about day in and day out.