If neither the birds nor the bees are piquing your interest lately, it could be time to see a sex therapist – or just read some Nat Geo Wild.
Although changes in libido are generally normal, particularly in older women, extended bouts of lowered sex drive can sometimes indicate more serious health issues.
Low libido is marked by:
- Disinterest in any type of sexual activity, including masturbation
- Infrequent or non-existent sexual fantasies
- Concern about lack of sexual interest
Perhaps the most obvious source of dimmed sexual desire is technical difficulty. Painful, uncomfortable, or simply unsatisfying experiences in the bedroom can leave us feeling discouraged about these kinds of endeavors in the future.
If you’ve just recently noticed a change in your libido and have also started taking a new medication, check with your doctor to see if the two could potentially be related. You’re lack of interest in sex can be an explicit symptom of certain prescriptions including (but not limited to):
- Tricyclic antidepressants
- Antipsychotic medications
- Leuprolide (Lupron)
- Goserelin (Zoladex)
During menopause, levels of testosterone and estrogen both decrease, which could dull your arousal. Also, vaginal dryness and atrophy, which can sometimes accompany this natural bodily change, might result in sexual discomfort and therefore a lowered interest in sex.
Because smoking decreases blood flow, engaging in this activity too frequently can lead to challenges with arousal. By the same token, prolonged, excessive drinking can affect both your libido and fertility. Irregular sleep and exercise habits can also be culprits with this issue.
Emotional or psychological factors
Mental health problems such as anxiety and depression can alter brain chemistry in a way that negatively affects sexual desire. In addition, the medications that are prescribed for these conditions tend to have the same result.
How to get in the mood
The most surefire way to deal with this problem is to consult your doctor about potential medication and/or therapy options. However, if you would like to attempt to increase your libido independently before heading to the clinic, here are some natural remedies to try.
According to Healthline, a privately-owned provider of health information, this Peruvian plant has historically been used to improve fertility and sexual desire. It is also said to improve symptoms of menopause.
Focusing on foreplay
According to a study from the Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy, only around 18% of women are able to orgasm exclusively from intercourse, while 33.6% report that stimulation of the clitoris is necessary to achieve this result. Often, foreplay can be the perfect opportunity to explore this increased clitoral stimulation.
Practice good sleep hygiene
Turning off screens at night, winding down at a consistent time, and getting at least 7 hours of sleep will ensure you have enough energy and stamina to have enjoyable sex. Your body will also more successfully regulate its hormones, which will increase your libido.