When Libido Takes a Hit
Libido, or sex drive, is an important aspect of health and wellness for both men and women. It is also one of the personal characteristics that we may question the most. Do we want sex often enough? Is our level of sexual desire normal? The problem with sex, in general, is that it can be a touchy subject. That being said, we’re going to dive right in.
Libido’s Natural Decline
One of the reasons that we may find ourselves questioning our personal preferences for frequency of sex is that our biology is constantly changing. These changes dictate how often we may feel “in the mood.” For women, biological shifts occur more frequently than for men. Each menstrual cycle, every pregnancy, and the years of perimenopause all bring with them a roller-coaster of hormones. As a result, a woman may experience numerous ups and downs throughout her life. This is not indicative of a sexual issue; it is the natural biological process.
Hormones also affect a man’s sex drive as he ages, though perhaps not in the same manner as the average woman. As a man’s testosterone levels fall, issues such as erectile dysfunction may arise. Along with it, this particular problem often generates its unique form of stress. The question of whether or not sexual intercourse will be “successful” may lead a man to avoid sex, further exacerbating the natural diminishment of libido.
What to do: Both men and women have the ability to better understand and manage sexual health at every age by consulting with their physician. Today, the availability of bioidentical hormones has increased interest in such treatment for ailing libido. Because conditions such as erectile dysfunction may also coincide with other health concerns, men are encouraged to obtain a full checkup that includes a prostate exam and hormone testing as they age.
There are several reasons why libido may rise and fall as we age. Our priority in providing patient care is to help patients assess the potential causes of low libidos, such as hormone imbalance, so appropriate treatment, if necessary, may be developed.
For more information on the services available in our Chattanooga urology practice, call (423) 778-8765.