Low Sex Drive? It Could Be This
Sex drive naturally fluctuates throughout your life. But sometimes it can really hit rock bottom. As in, you never think about sex, sexual fantasies, or have the urge to masturbate.
When that happens, you may have something called hypoactive sexual desire disorder. This condition occurs when you lack interest in sexual activities and pursue other things instead, even if you aren’t particularly old.
There are many transient reasons why you might not want to engage in sexual activities. However, there are deeper concerns, too.
In this post, we take a look at some of the reasons for your low sex drive and what, if anything, you can do about it.
Ironically, birth control can actually lower your sexual desires, making you less likely to want to engage in sex. Pills contain a mixture of progestin and estrogen hormones that lower the level of testosterone in your body. In turn, that can reduce your sex drive, leading to a lack of arousal.
Similar things can happen when taking SSRIs, a type of antidepressant. These raise the level of serotonin in your body, making you feel calmer and less anxious, which, in turn, can reduce your desire to find a mate.
There are many other medications and physical factors that can lower your sex drive, too. If you notice a change in your levels of desire after being prescribed medication and it is affecting your quality of life, go and talk to a doctor and see if your prescription has anything to do with it. They may be able to give you a different type of drug.
Problems in romantic relationships can also cause desire issues in the bedroom. Emotional closeness is a prerequisite for many women for physical intimacy. If it’s absent, feeling desire and becoming aroused is no longer possible.
If the relationship lacks closeness like before, that could explain a lower sex drive. Lack of connection with a partner, perhaps because of trust issues, could lead to a reduction of intimacy in the bedroom. The solution might be marriage counseling or couples therapy to work through issues and solve them together.
In many cases, just spending a little more time together can be sufficient to deal with most issues. Going camping or hiking in the mountains can go a long way to spicing up your love life. In fact, any form of physical exercise can be a tremendous aphrodisiac that changes your chemistry entirely.
Mental health issues can play havoc with your sex drive. When your body is under stress, or you have low self-esteem, your sex drive can plummet. When you’re not feeling your best, sex is often the last thing on your mind.
Adding other stressors to your body can make your situation worse. Drinking, smoking, and taking other substances can cause libido to plummet over the long term.
If you notice your mental health isn’t as good as it used to be, then speak to a doctor. They may be able to recommend talk therapy to help you cope with the challenges of life and feel better about yourself.
Hormonal changes are a significant driver of changes in sex drive. When you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, for instance, your sex drive will be naturally lower than at other times. Hormones dampen down the desire to reproduce as your body prepares to become a parent.
You might also notice a significant reduction in your libido during menopause. Estrogen levels drop significantly, leading to vaginal dryness and, occasionally, discomfort during sex.
The good news is that there are things that you can do to push back. For instance, bioidentical hormone replacement therapy is available for women going through age-related hormone changes. These restore body chemistry to previous levels, helping to improve desire and reduce pain during sex.
You can also change aspects of your lifestyle. Diet and exercise can often go a long way to undo some of the effects of menopause and help you feel better about the bedroom.
Having a history of sexual abuse is a common reason for lacking a strong sex drive. Unconscious trauma is getting in the way of arousal pathways, leading to a lack of interest, or outright disgust, at sexual practices.
For most people, dealing with trauma eliminates the lack of desire. Once they process, accept, and confront what happened, they can move on with their lives.
Physical abuse can also produce similar symptoms. You may not want to be close to other people because someone was violent towards you in the past. You worry that something similar will happen to you again.
If you have a history of abuse, don’t be afraid to talk to a mental health professional. Modern techniques can help people overcome trauma rapidly.
Not all people have enjoyable sexual experiences. For many, sex can be painful or disgusting.
If you’ve had an experience like that in the past, your body will naturally want to avoid the activity in the future. Unsciously, you’ll put up a barrier to protect yourself from similar disappointments.
Again, the trick here is to go into future sexual encounters with an open mind. Even though previous episodes were marred by problems, future ones may not be. You may also be able to talk to your partner about what you like, and what they can do to help you.
Poor body image is another major contributor to low libido. Women who feel ashamed to take off their clothes are less likely to want to get frisky and may, in some cases, try to ignore sexuality altogether.
If you are in shape and you don’t like your body, then you may want to visit a therapist to discuss your issues. If you're not in shape, talk to your partner about your insecurities and how they are leading to lower desire levels.