What Causes a Low Libido and How Is It Treated?
At some point in our lives, most of us will experience low libido and an associated loss of sex drive. This is because our sex drives are so closely linked to our physiological and psychological wellbeing, as well as a multitude of other factors such as our surroundings, how we feel about ourselves and how we feel about our partner. You may need to seek treatment for a loss of sex drive if:
- You have noticed a sudden dip in your sex drive and your libido has stayed low over a period of weeks or months
- You are also experiencing erectile dysfunction — difficulty getting or remaining erect
- You have noticed a lack of early morning erections
- You are finding it difficult to concentrate — are you exhausted and feeling”foggy”?
- You are highly stressed, anxious and/or depressed
- You find yourself to be moody and irritable, and are experiencing sudden mood swings
- Your low libido is impacting the health of your relationship
Treatments for a loss of sex drive range from couples therapy and lifestyle changes to medications and ongoing support, depending on the cause of your low libido and the associated symptoms of your condition. If you feel that your loss of sex drive is having an impact on the quality of your relationship and causing you to be unhappy or concerned, it is crucial to seek treatment promptly and maintain an open dialogue with your partner to prevent further exacerbating sexual performance issues and raising already-heightened stress levels.
Causes of Low Libido
It is important to remember that everyone’s sex drive is different, and there is no such thing as a “normal” libido. A sudden loss of sex drive or a prolonged lack of desire for sex can be caused by many factors, from tiredness and stress to reduced hormone levels. The most common causes are stress, anxiety, relationship problems, reactions to medications, Erectile Dysfunction (ED — difficulty gaining and maintaining erections) and Testosterone Deficiency (TD).
Loss of Sex Drive Due to Relationship Problems
It can often be difficult and painful for men to talk about a loss of sex drive with their partners, and low libido can lead to resentment, which in turn deepens the feelings of isolation and frustration that men with these issues often experience. One of the first things to consider when experiencing a loss of sex drive is whether you are happy in your relationship and what issues you are facing that could be exacerbating your lack of desire. These may include loss of sexual attraction, unresolved conflict or frequent arguments, poor communication and difficulty trusting each other.
Low Libido Due to Sexual Health Problems
A variety of sexual health problems can lead to a loss of sex drive in men, particularly ejaculation problems, such as premature ejaculation and erectile dysfunction. If your partner is also experiencing sexual health issues, such as vaginal dryness or the inability to orgasm, or is finding sex painful, then this can lead to a reduced desire for sexual intercourse in men. Most sexual health problems can be treated promptly once diagnosed, so it is essential that you seek help immediately if you have a medical condition that is preventing you from desiring or enjoying sex.
Lack of Sex Drive Due to Situational Factors
There are so many situational changes that can affect your sex drive, from a change in living circumstances and suddenly sharing a living space with additional people to the birth of a baby and adapting your relationship to accommodate parenting a child. If stress, anxiety and exhaustion are a factor in your lack of sex drive, it’s vital not to blame or punish one another. Instead, look to resolve the situational issues that are affecting your relationship with kindness and patience so that you can get your sex life back on track as quickly as possible.
Diagnosis of Low Libido
Low libido is often a symptom of other health conditions and concerns. If you are experiencing a sudden dip in sex drive, your doctor will ascertain whether you are suffering from erectile dysfunction, low testosterone, stress, anxiety or relationship issues, among a wide variety of other factors, to help you find the right treatment for your lack of sex drive and deal with it promptly.
Treatments for Loss of Sex Drive in Men
The good news is that a sudden loss of sex drive can often be treated quickly once a thorough assessment of your health and wellbeing has been conducted. Treatment begins with assessing any lifestyle issues that could be contributing factors, as detailed below.
Lifestyle changes to Treat Low Libido
If you haven’t been making time for you and your partner to be alone together, or if you’re struggling with heightened stress or finding a lack of privacy to be an issue, there are lifestyle changes you can make to resolve your issues and enjoy a healthy and happy sex life. If appropriate, your doctor will recommend that you:
- Avoid unnecessary stress — if you have a stressful job or home life, you may need to discuss the impact it is having on your health with your manager or partner, and seek resolutions that alleviate the feelings of pressure and anxiety
- Sleep more and make more time for relaxation
- Attend relationship or sex therapy, if appropriate, to improve communication and increase the level of support within your relationship.
- Make time to take your partner out on dates and enjoy one another’s company alone
- Find personal space for you and your partner to enjoy privacy and relaxation.
Erectile Dysfunction Treatment
Erectile Dysfunction can be caused by a narrowing of the penile blood vessels, or high blood pressure or cholesterol. If you are finding it difficult to gain or maintain an erection and this is affecting your libido, your doctor may recommend that you take appropriate medication to treat the causes and/or symptoms of your erectile dysfunction. This may include topical pellets and creams, tablets, injections, the use of a vacuum device or shockwave therapy to induce an erection that is firm enough for sexual intercourse.
Premature Ejaculation Treatment
Premature ejaculation can be an embarrassing condition that causes men to experience low libido due to a fear of poor sexual performance. If PE is an issue, your doctor may recommend the use of topical gels or tablets to help you prolong the period from beginning intercourse to ejaculation so that you can enjoy sex for longer.
Testosterone Replacement Therapy
If you are diagnosed with Testosterone Deficiency (TD), your doctor will prescribe appropriate medicines to help boost your testosterone levels and balance out your hormones. Testosterone replacement therapy provides quick results through the direct application of topical gels or testosterone injections.
Contact The Mann Clinic for Advice on Low Libido
For over ten years, we have been helping men to regain their sexual health and wellness in our comfortable and confidential London and Winchester-based clinics. Call us to arrange a consultation — appointments are available in-person or online at times to suit your schedule.