Sexual dysfunction is common with 43% of women reporting some degree of difficulty. It can occur at any stage of life.
Although patients are often hesitant to share this, most cases of sexual dysfunction are treatable so it is important to discuss these issues at your visit.
How can sexual dysfunction affect you?
Low sexual desire
- This characterized by a lack of sexual interest or desire to be sexual
- Factors that contribute include hormonal changes, medical conditions, depression, pregnancy, stress, fatigue and lifestyle factors, such as careers and children
Sexual arousal disorder
- Unable to become aroused or maintain arousal
- Can be related to insufficient lubrication or inadequate stimulation
- Anxiety can also be a factor
- Persistent or recurrent difficulty having orgasm after sufficient sexual arousal
- This can be affected by a woman’s sexual inhibition or inexperience
- Anxiety and past sexual trauma can impact this response
- Certain medications have been shown to play a role
- Can stem from numerous causes such as endometriosis, pelvic masses, ovarian cysts, vaginitis, sexually transmitted diseases or scar tissue from previous surgeries
- Poor lubrication especially due to hormonal changes can contribute
Menopausal sexual changes
- Lower estrogen levels lead to changes in the genital tissue which can affect blood flow and sexual responsiveness
- Vaginal lining thins (vaginal atrophy) This makes the tissue less elastic leading to painful intercourse
- Lower hormone levels may also cause decreased desire
Although sexual response is complex, there are many treatment options available to address the above conditions. We are here to explore these with our patients and coordinate other beneficial resources such as sexual therapy and physical therapy to help our patients attain their best sexual health.