Libido: what is it?
The libido or sexual desire is the desire to engage in sexual activity. Sexual desire can arise spontaneously or in response to a partner, images or thoughts.
The intensity of the desire depends on various factors such as the quality of the couple relationship, physical health, psychological state or events that mark life (pregnancy, mourning, stress at work, etc.). The drop in sexual desire is one of the different sexual dysfunctions that men and women can experience at any time in their lives, says the best sexologist in Delhi.
Low libido becomes problematic when it worries the person or his partner and affects the romantic relationship. However, this condition does not always affect the ability to have sex, says sexologist in Delhi.
Causes of low libido
Sexual desire is a complex interaction of several factors, including physical and emotional well-being, life experiences, rhythm of life and intimate relationships.
A drop in sexual desire can have a physical cause such as:
- A sexual problem, such as pain during sex or an inability to reach orgasm.
- A sickness. Several diseases can affect sexual desire, for example arthritis, cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure (hypertension), depression, or neurological diseases.
- The effects of a drug. Several drugs, such as certain antidepressants often decrease sexual desire. Other drugs to treat prostate problems or hair loss, or to regulate blood pressure can affect your libido, explains sexologist doctor in Delhi.
- Surgery. Surgeries related to the breasts or genitals can affect self-image, sexual function and sexual desire.
- Alcohol or drugs. Abuse of alcohol or certain drugs can affect libido.
- Tiredness. Excess fatigue caused for example by caring for elderly parents or young children can affect sexual desire.
- Menopause. During the transition to menopause, women’s estrogen levels drop. This can cause vaginal dryness, so painful or uncomfortable sex can be the cause of avoiding sex. On the other hand, if after menopause, the ovaries secrete very few estrogens, they continue to secrete relatively large amounts of androgens (testosterone …). However, this androgen level becomes lower than before menopause, which can be taken into account in a decrease in sexual desire, says sex specialist in Delhi.
- Pregnancy and breastfeeding. Hormonal changes during pregnancy, as well as after childbirth and breastfeeding can affect sexual desire. Not only hormones, but fatigue, body changes, and the stress of having a new baby can affect sexual desire.
- Prolactin. An abnormal increase in prolactin (a hormone responsible, among other things, for triggering and maintaining lactation) blocks sexual desire, in men, as in women, explains top sexologist in Delhi.
- Low testosterone. In men, testosterone is produced in the testes. This hormone is essential for maintaining bone density, fat distribution, muscle mass, production of red blood cells, production of sperm and sexual desire. With age, testosterone gradually decreases (by around 1% per year after the age of 30). Sometimes testosterone can decrease very significantly with age. A drop in testosterone can also be due to a disease.
- The contraceptive pill. Taking the contraceptive pill tends to decrease libido in 20 to 40% of women, because it decreases the amount of testosterone circulating in the blood in women, says sexologist in South Delhi.
A drop in sexual desire can have a psychological cause, such as:
- Childhood sexual abuse.
- Intense stress related to a financial situation or a job.
- Low self-esteem.
- A conflictual love relationship (lack of communication, unresolved conflicts, infidelity, lack of trust in your partner).
Symptoms of decreased libido, risks and prevention
Symptoms of decreased desire
- An unexplained and prolonged disappearance of sexual desire.
- Sometimes a systematic repulsion with regard to sexual activities. This symptom manifests itself especially in case of psychological blockage.
People at risk of low libido
- Age. Decreased sexual desire can happen at any age, but it manifests more frequently as a man or a woman ages.
Risk factors for lack of desire
- Couples living in marital conflicts.
- People who do not feel respected by their partner.
- People with chronic illness.
- People with significant concerns (unemployment, accident in life, serious illness of a loved one, death in the entourage …)
- People abusing pornographic images.
Prevention of decreased desire
Basic preventive measures
In order to maintain sexual desire and increase pleasure during sex:
- Make sure you maintain good communication with your spouse.
- Discuss with your partner what gives you pleasure during intimate relationships.
- Show imagination and fantasy.
- After menopause, have an open and positive attitude towards your sexuality. Despite the decline of hormones, it is quite possible to maintain a beautiful sexual vitality, suggests sexologist in East Delhi.
Medical treatments for low libido
Hormonal therapies are used when the drop in libido is caused by a hormonal problem.
In men, a drop in libido caused by low testosterone can be treated with testosterone replacement therapy. A blood sample is used to check the testosterone level.
Testosterone is available in patches affixed once a day in the back, on the abdomen, on the arm, or on the thighs, in gel (that is applied to the skin once a day), in injection (administered by sexologist in Delhi at 3 or 4 week intervals) or capsules.
Some women may be given estrogen. This low sex desire treatment in Delhi can have a positive effect on brain functions and mood that affect sexual response. However, this type of therapy can increase the risk of heart disease and breast cancer.
Lower doses of estrogen can be given in the form of vaginal creams, slow-release suppositories or a ring in the vagina. These drugs manage to increase the blood flow in the vagina and help increase desire without the risks associated with estrogen absorption.
When the desire disorder is due to a very high prolactin level, a check-up is necessary, with appropriate treatment.
Change of medication
When the drop in libido is caused by a medication, your sexologist in Delhi can usually prescribe another one.
Lifestyle changes and therapies
When the drop in libido has a psychological cause, it can be treated by lifestyle changes and techniques that help develop sexuality.
- Exercises. Regular aerobic and power exercises can improve stamina, self-image, and mood and boost libido.
- Reduce stress. Finding solutions to deal with financial stress, work-related stress or daily hassles can stimulate sexual desire.
- Communicate with your partner. Couples who learn to communicate in an honest and open relationship usually maintain stronger bonds that lead to healthier sex. Talking about your sexual preferences can also improve intimate relationships.
- Plan some privacy. Although planning sex on the calendar may seem artificial and boring, making intimate periods a priority can help regain sexual desire.
- Add spice to her sex life. Try different sexual positions, variable places or times of the day, if you and your partner agree.
- Advice from a sexologist in Delhi can help to understand the cause of the decline in sexual desire. These therapies usually include teachings on sexual response, techniques and recommendations for reading, as well as exercises to do in a couple.
- Very often, the drop in libido is due to deep disorders. A depression, a difficult experience in childhood, a traumatic death, sexual assault, rape … In this case, a work of therapy will be essential to revive the vital momentum, because the libido is linked to this momentum.