Did you know that 46% of women experience a low sex drive at some point in their lifetime? When facing a low sex drive, be prepared to experience a lack of sexual desire, an absence of sexual thoughts, and even overall distress. It’s an extremely common occurrence, however, many misunderstand its cause. Here are a few of the most common myths surrounding why women experience low libido, busted!
Myth #1 – Something is wrong with you or it’s your fault
This myth needs to be squashed immediately. First and foremost, a low sex drive can be the result of many different factors that have nothing to do with you. Oftentimes, it can root from pain during sex, medications (such as antidepressants), stress, hormones, the list goes on and on. There are countless circumstances which are out of your control, so it’s crucial to understand that your lack of sexual desire is not your fault and nothing is wrong with you.
Myth #2 – It can only happen to straight women
When we think about sex, we often infer that men desire sex far more than women do. The lower sexual desire is always the woman, right? Actually, a lack of sex drive occurs in both men and women of all sexual orientations and identities. Women don’t struggle with this alone.
Myth #3 – It’s a part of the aging process
During the menopause process, the effects of decreased estrogen levels can certainly undermine sexual motivation. Menopause can cause vaginal dryness, hot flashes, and change sexual sensation. Just because your body is changing through the aging process doesn’t mean you have to throw in the towel for a good sex life altogether. There are many ways to treat menopause-induced libido changes that you can try!
Myth #4 – There’s nothing you can do about it
It’s easy to feel discouraged about regaining your sexual desire, but there are many things you can do about it once you’ve determined the root cause. Here are a few solutions to explore:
Hormone therapy. Vaginal atrophy, or dryness and shrinking of the vagina, can cause sex to be extremely uncomfortable and even painful. Estrogen can help relieve these symptoms and can be taken in various forms. There are pills, patches, sprays, vaginal creams, and even vaginal rings. For more information on if estrogen therapy is right for you, go here.
Medication. First, it’s important to review the medications you currently take to see if any could be the culprit of your low desire. Medications like antidepressants, antihypertensives, and even some birth control methods can lead to low libido. On the other hand, there are medication options that are designed to boost libido in women, such as Addyi, which is the first FDA-approved treatment for perimenopausal women and can be prescribed by your doctor.
Communicate with your partner. The key to an intimate relationship, both emotionally and physically, is open communication. If you feel as if you’ve been closed off from your partner about your change in desire, it’s important to start being honest with them. Discuss your likes and dislikes in the bedroom to start. If your decreased desire stems from relationship problems, this is a good time to address those with your partner.
Exercise. If your low sex drive seems to link to stress and self-image, consider incorporating some form of exercise into your daily routine. Regular exercise will increase your stamina and strength, all while improving your body-image and boosting your mood. If a hard gym session isn’t your thing, there are plenty of other physical activities that relieve stress you can do instead.
Seek out a sex coach. Sex coaches are great, especially for those who haven’t been able to pinpoint their sexual barriers. A sex coach creates a safe space for you to create practical steps together to move forward towards a better sex life.