What The Naturopath Says
When treating someone for low libido, Jean Hailes naturopath Sandra Villella often assesses their overall health before delving specifically into their sexual health. “Your libido levels are connected to your physical, mental and emotional health,” she says. “It’s difficult to feel a desire for sex when you’re exhausted, depressed or unwell.”
Management of low libido, from the naturopath’s perspective, isn’t simply a matter of prescribing a herbal aphrodisiac . Research points out that depression, sleep issues and night sweats often occur alongside low libido in perimenopausal women. So, if appropriate, Ms Villella might address these issues first, rather than prescribing a treatment to stimulate desire.
Ms Villella says, “Most herbal medicines that are ‘aphrodisiac’ actually treat your overall health, working to improve your physical and mental wellbeing rather than specifically increasing your sexual urge.”
She warns women to be very wary of internet claims and the promise of a natural or herbal ‘cure’ for lowered libido. “Women should source their information about natural therapies from an accredited naturopath or herbalist.”
How Can I Improve My Sex Drive During And After Menopause
Estrogen replacement may work, but more research is needed. Estrogen can make sex less painful by treating vaginal dryness, though.
Doctors are also studying whether a combo of estrogen and male hormones called androgens may help boost sex drive in women.
Although sexual problems can be hard to discuss, talk to your doctor. There are options to consider, such as counseling. Your doctor may refer you and your partner to a health professional who specializes in sexual dysfunction. The therapist may advise sexual counseling on an individual basis, with your partner, or in a support group. This type of counseling can be very successful, even when it’s done on a short-term basis.
How Does Menopause Affect Your Sex Life
Menopause can affect your libido both physically and emotionally.
From a physical standpoint, the decline in estrogen levels can cause hot flashes, night sweats, lethargy, loss of sexual sensitivity in the vagina, and loss of vaginal dryness.
The hot flashes can make you too irritable for sex, the lethargy too tired, and the vaginal dryness can make sex a sore and uncomfortable experience, and achieving orgasm becomes more of a battle.
Moreover, the emotional effects of menopause, which include embracing the realities of getting older, coupled with your children leaving the nest, relationship problems with your partner, and the general day-to-day stressors, can also cause your sex drive to take a significant dip.
That said, its important for menopausal women to understand that these changes are normal and that there are a few ways for them to address the issue.
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Tacking Loss Of Sex Drive With Hormone Therapy
As every woman is unique, so are her hormones. Therefore at the Marion Gluck Clinic, we take a holistic approach accessing hormone balance, lifestyle and nutrition to develop a bespoke treatment plan for each client. However, the 2 main ways we tackle sex drive with hormone therapy are:
- Create Hormone BalanceAs a woman moves through each phase of menopause, hormone levels can fluctuate significantly, however, these vital hormones, such as estrogen, progesterone and testosterone remain important for bones, vaginal and urethral health, skin, brain function and cardiovascular health. It is therefore important to effectively balance and replenish these hormones with bio-identical hormone replacement therapy to maintain a womans health, energy, mood, brain function and sex drive.
- Treat the area locallyWhile hormone balance will ensure that you maintain a healthy sex drive you may still need a bit of assistance locally for comfort and arousal. Therefore, we may also prescribe a hormone cream that would be applied to the vagina to increase sensitivity and stimulation.
Increased Sex Drive In Perimenopause
I understand that the desire for a lot of sex sounds like something crazy when were talking about perimenopause, but it does happen.
For some women, there is a slight shift upwards in testosterone, to the point that they want sex much more frequently than they have in the past. For me, this first started around ovulation. I wanted sex 10 times more than I ever had before, but only around ovulation.
Over time though, my libido grew to be a constant factor in my life. At the most intense point, I would wake up, have about three minutes of peace, and then begin thinking about and desiring sex until I went to sleep at the end of the day. It was exciting in many ways I really enjoyed thinking and feeling sexy things all day long but it was also exhausting.
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As I began to write on my blog, about this new level of libido at midlife, 100s of women emailed me with similar stories. So many were afraid something was wrong with them, or that they had a brain tumour .
Most of all, women described not having safe places to talk about these symptoms and be believed, a frustration shared by so many midlife women.
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Rediscover What Libido Means To You
In my office, women talk of changes in their sexual lives. Our conversation often surrounds what to do and what is available for treatment. Often it requires opening up the can of worms to discuss what libido is and what drives it.
Libido is a complex aspect of sexuality. Many people are uncomfortable discussing it. And many times, it isnt until menopause happens that we try to find the time to peel back the layers and figure out what libido really means for us individually.
Finding new ways to transform arousal and moments of excitement such as pelvic physical therapy or laser vaginal rejuvenation also restore intimacy in relationships. The incorporation of lifestyle changes, technology, and medications can together help maintain the results of arousal with vaginal lubrication and vaginal tissue changes.
Sex therapists are also extremely effective in helping foster a new sense of intimacy with partners. Their tips may include:
Libido And The Psyche
Physiologic problems must always be treated despite presence of psychiatric illness, because these two factors can have an indistinguishably intertwined impact on libido and coital activity. Dyspareunia-related decrease in frequency of coitus can be the primary cause of marital problems and can present as a marital problem when in fact physiologic problems of menopause are the cause of the change in libido. Lack of libido due to low testosterone levels can induce the same type of marital conflict, a circumstance that can in turn mislead physicians into diagnosing a psychological problem as the cause of the lack of libido.
For depression or anxiety disorders to be the cause of decrease in libido, onset of the psychiatric illness must be established and correlated with the onset of sexual symptoms. Depression and anxiety in women may directly affect libido and sexual response through loss of desire and also may affect the womans sexual partner in that he stops initiating sexual relations. Libido can be affected by marital stress as well as by accumulated anger between the couple. Both these factors should be taken into account when evaluating decrease in libido. However, the chronicity of the coital problem and of the libidinal problem is a critical aspect of determining the cause of decreasing libido and frequency of coitus.
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You May Reinvent Reimagine Your Sex Life
Keep in mind that sex doesnt look the same with aging, says Faubion. We have to modify our expectations about sexual functioning as we get older. Sex may not be always be penis and vagina sex I have that conversation often with my patients, she says.
As peoples bodies and health changes, including medical illnesses that can be experienced by both men and women, we may need to modify what we are doing, but nonetheless, sexual intimacy remains important to all people for as long as they live, says Faubion.
Sexual Wellbeing And Intimacy During And After Menopause
Theres a myth that because youre going through the menopause, that your sex life is over, but this does not have to be the case. If you want to enjoy the pleasure that is available to you in your body, either alone or with a partner, it is all still there after the menopause.
While some of the hormonal changes of menopause may change the way you experience sex and your body, theres lots you can do to create a happy and pleasurable sex life that feels right for you.
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Sexual Desire In Perimenopause
Loss of libido was something that the MPowered Women medical experts write about and I was waiting for it, but no sign so far. There are two areas concerned with the loss of libido one is physical and the other is psychological, says Dr Stephanie Goodwin.
In physical terms, you may now be experiencing discomfort during intercourse. This is caused by the decrease in oestrogen which had previously kept the walls of the vagina healthy and lubricated. Lower levels of this hormone can now make those walls dry and irritated which can make things painful. Surveys show that a very large percentage of women find sex painful and the majority of those find this causes a low sex drive which can then negatively impact upon their relationships.
Dr Goodwin also writes about the night sweats that can make a good nights sleep a thing of the past for many women. And who wants sex when youd far rather be nodding off!
Advice For Loss Of Libido
Theres more to sex than having intercourse. If your interest in having sex has decreased, you may want to try some more sensual methods of becoming aroused. These include:
- exploring and caressing each others bodies
- taking a bath or shower together
- having a massage
- kissing each other slowly and in sensual places
- undressing each other
Some medicines can cause a loss of libido. If you are concerned that your medicine is causing this, ask your doctor for a medicine review.
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Theres No Shame In Rebalancing Yourself With Medications
For some, the desire for sex may still be strong, but other physical symptoms can get in the way. For example, the effects of decreased estrogen can cause vaginal atrophy, which narrows and shortens the vagina. The uterus can also prolapse and lead to discomfort, painful sex, and urinary leakage.
These symptoms can be managed using medications, including hormonal replacement therapy . HRT can come in various forms, like pills, foams, patches, and vaginal creams. The goal of this therapy is to help vasomotor symptoms and vulvovaginal atrophy.
HRT is an effective treatment for vaginal changes and libido, but discuss your needs in detail with a medical professional before starting a regimen. They can ensure that no medical risks are overlooked.
Another option is testosterone. While the U.S. Food and Drug Administration hasnt approved this option yet, some clinicians do administer it. A few studies have shown that its led to a noticeable improvement in sexual dysfunction. Testosterone therapy options include pills, patches, creams, and oral therapies. All of these should be monitored carefully. Theres specific dosing for each type of transdermal testosterone product.
If youd like to go natural, there are herbal supplements that may help increase libido. Some supplements that have been recommended to increase libido in women include:
- black cohosh
- red clover
How To Increase Libido After Menopause Naturally: Get Help
Consult a specialist on the subject, either talk to your gynecologist or a sexologist who can guide you through this life stage. Do not feel bad about talking about this issue because a large percentage of women face the same problems as you, the difference is in how women successfully overcome the problem and continue to have a sexually active life.
So, there are ways to increase libido after menopause, try them!
If you want to read similar articles to How to Increase Libido after Menopause Naturally, we recommend you visit our Sentimental relationships category.
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How Can I Get My Sex Drive Back After Menopause
Lost your sex drive after menopause? There are many possible explanations. How are you feeling in general? Are you getting enough sleep? Exercising or moving your body around? An overall feeling of wellness makes a big difference in having a sex drive.
If you’re feeling good but not feeling turned on, try working on your sexy thoughts. Often after menopause, it takes longer for your body to turn on.
What does that mean? You have to start with your mind. Do the things that used to get your juices flowingwhether that’s watching romantic movies or reading eroticaand let your mind start the process of turning on your body.
If your body needs help once your mind is aroused, try using some lubricant. It can help things feel like they’re moving along when the mind is willing but the flesh is weak.
How Do I Get My Sex Drive Back After Menopause Ask Ellie
A recent question from a man complaining that his wife wouldnt discuss menopause but arbitrarily ended sex with him raises the question: Is it the womans hormonal changes, or her reaction to them, or the quality of the couples relationship that causes her to give up on having sex?
Some facts: Menopause refers to when a woman stops having her period permanently, which may follow a peri-menopausal phase of having night sweats, and mood swings.
Some symptoms and side effects of menopause: Anxiety, bladder control issues, decreased sex drive and sexual desire, depression, difficulty sleeping, thinning hair, and weight gain. Little wonder that this can be a very trying transition for a woman!
The reality is that decreased estrogen levels can result in reduced blood flow to the vagina, which can cause the tissues of the vagina and the labia to become thinner. If this happens, the two areas become less sensitive to sexual stimulation.
But its not always only bad news. Many women who experience this transition seek medical advice from a womens health clinic. Their family doctor or, if needed, a gynecologist on how best to handle menopause, given their particular symptoms.
Those who benefit from using lubricants, herbal therapies such as black cohosh, trying new sexual positions or other approaches to intimacy, and those who seek and are given medical approval for using hormonal replacement therapy , learn to navigate their new sexual realities.
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Menopause And Decreased Libido
There is certainly a link between menopause and sex drive, as the hormones that are crucial for sexual desire are out of sync beginning in the months leading up to a menopause diagnosis . During this time, women may experience side effects that could interfere with fun in the bedroom. These include:
Loss Of Female Libido
Loss of libido is a loss of interest in sex or a low sex drive that is persistent and wont go away outside of the normal fluctuations of your interest in sex.
Its not unusual for a woman to lose interest in sex at some stage, or experience difficulty climaxing to orgasm. It doesnt mean anything is wrong, as a range of physical and psychological factors can play a part in your feelings towards sexual intercourse.
- pregnancy, giving birth or breastfeeding
- history of unwanted sexual contact
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Sex After Menopause: 13 Ways To Get Your Groove Back
A common issue amongst menopausal and postmenopausal women is the change in their sex lives. Believe it or not, sex and menopause are more closely connected than you may think.
For instance, a recent studyfound that the women who had sex at least weekly or monthly were less likely to enter menopause throughout the duration of the 11-year study, compared to women who had engaged in sexual activity less than monthly.
When To Talk To Your Doctor
As a person goes through menopause, it’s natural for their experience of their body to change. However, there are certain signs that you should talk to your doctor. These include:
- Irregular vaginal bleeding
- Pain during sex or urination
- Any symptoms that make it difficult to function in your life
Even more mild symptoms may be worth talking to a doctor about if they’re making it hard to live your life. There may be options to help you sleep better and feel better, which can also help your libido and sex life.
People who are having trouble coping with the psychological changes of menopause should also consider talking with a therapist. A skilled sex therapist may be particularly helpful if you have difficulty figuring out how to reignite your sex life after menopause.
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Physiologic Changes At Menopause And Their Effect On Sexuality
Hormones affect sexual arousal through sensory perception, central as well as peripheral nerve transmission and discharge, peripheral blood flow, and capacity to develop muscle tension. Impairment of this mechanism can lead to diminished sexual responsiveness, dyspareunia, decreased sexual activity, decline in sexual desire, and sexual aversion.
Decreasing estrogen affects the integrity of female reproductive tract tissues. Decreased vaginal lubrication and atrophic vaginitis result in dyspareunia. Decreased blood flow to the reproductive organs results in diminished vasocongestion. Progressive ischemia, thinning of the barrier layers of skin and mucous membrane tissue, loss of subcutaneous fat, and a shrinking introitus are among many changes which occur in the genital structures as a result of hypoestrogenemia. Extragenital effects include loss of pelvic muscle tone, decreased intraurethral pressure, a smaller bladder, and thinning of the mucous membrane lining of the bladder and urethra. These effects have been found to be somewhat ameliorated by continuing sexual activity despite no estrogen replacement. Women who were sexually active had less atrophy than those who were not. In general, the health of the vaginal tissues decline in the absence of estrogen stimulation, despite sexual activity.