When a Woman Loses Desire: Sexual Dysfunction in Women

Womens loss of desire image Dissatisfaction with sexual life is an issue for both men and women. Dissatisfaction for women may be due to a lack of interest in sex, inability to achieve orgasm, or pain during sex. Unfortunately, pinpointing the underlying issues and conditions that cause sexual dissatisfaction can be complicated. There may be both medical and psychological issues involved. In fact, often several issues interrelate to affect a woman’s sexual life.

Sexual Dysfunction Disorders

In exploring women’s sexual problems, doctors must realize that a woman’s sexual life is personal. For example, what may bother one woman may not bother another. And what may occur in one situation may not occur in every situation. Still, doctors may use a general classification system to help sort out the basis of a woman’s dissatisfaction with her sexual life. This classification system includes the following four disorders:
  • Sexual desire/interest disorder
  • Sexual arousal disorder
  • Orgasmic disorder
  • Sexual pain disorder such as vaginismus or dyspareunia
Importantly, the underlying assumption of all these disorders is that the sexual problems are causing significant and ongoing personal distress to the woman, as well as to her partner.

Sexual Desire Disorder

For some women, a lack of desire before having sex is normal. But these women may become aroused or interested once they start to engage in sexual activity. A woman may have sexual desire disorder if she is worried or concerned about her lack of interest in sex. The lack of interest may be not having sexual thoughts or fantasies, not desiring sexual activity, or not being receptive to a partner’s desire for sexual activity. The causes of sexual desire disorder can vary from low hormone levels to chronic medical illnesses to social or psychological issues. Often several factors interact to create a situation of low sexual desire.

Sexual Arousal Disorder

Sexual arousal disorder is the persistent inability to become sexually excited both physically and mentally, and its causes may be either physical or psychological. Physical causes include low blood flow to the genitals or inadequate lubrication. Psychological causes may include anxiety and stress. Arousal can also be affected by lifestyle factors, such as using drugs, alcohol, or smoking. It can also be affected by certain medications.

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