Sexy couple having intimate foreplay session on bed

6 Factors You May Not Know About Low Libido

What do you do when sex goes from a natural part of your daily routine with your partner to a chore? If you cringe at the thought of intimacy after a long day, you're not alone. Many women experience fluctuations in their sexual desire due to factors such as age, menstrual cycles, and medications. But what if everything looks fine, but the desire isn't there?

While low libido in men is often easier to identify, such as erectile dysfunction, pinpointing the cause of low libido in women can be more complicated. For women, it's often related to emotional stress, not just physical factors.

1. Lack of sleep

True exhaustion doesn't always show up in a midday state of tiredness or when you crawl into bed. It can manifest itself in subtle ways, and loss of libido is one of them. When you don't get enough sleep, or when your sleep is consistently disrupted (such as waking up frequently throughout the night or not getting enough REM sleep), your body lacks the energy to keep up with a 6 a.m. workout, a long day at work, housework, and catching up on life. need. favorite shows and engage in passionate intimacy. It’s simply not feasible! Start by establishing a consistent bedtime routine and sticking to it. Remember, it’s okay to ditch your morning workout once in a while and explore other ways to burn off energy…if you know what I mean.

2. Lack of emotional connection

We often think our relationship with our partner is still strong, but sometimes, it's not as strong as we think. This doesn't necessarily mean the love has waned. It may indicate a lack of emotional or physical connection and has nothing to do with the depth of the relationship. Missed connections may be subtle: differing interests in trying new things, unresolved conflicts, or hesitancy in discussing future steps. Loss of contact can happen quickly and quietly, and often goes unnoticed. When there's a disconnect, the spark is lost and your libido may suffer as a result.

Fortunately, lost connections can be reestablished with the right approach. Do you and your partner communicate openly and effectively? Do you both feel understood and valued? Are there any unspoken concerns? Effective communication coupled with active listening promotes honesty and openness, allowing both parties to solve problems and work toward positive change.

3. Eating habits

Similar to the effects of sleep deprivation, a poor diet rich in processed foods and added sugars can also weaken your energy levels. While we're not recommending a complete overhaul of your diet (because who can resist a delicious cheese and wine night?), incorporating whole foods that naturally boost energy can significantly boost your libido.

Additionally, if you are dealing with any stomach, intestinal or digestive issues, eating a balanced diet and avoiding trigger foods can also be beneficial. When your body is battling inflammation and your stomach feels butterflies in your stomach, the thought of sex may be the furthest thing from your mind. 

4. Work pressure

Your work life, from the typical 9-to-5 grind to late-night and weekend commitments, can greatly impact your sex life. Stress from work doesn't magically disappear when you walk through the door of your apartment at night. If you find yourself regularly working outside of your regular work hours, sex can easily slip down the list of priorities. After a long day, it's easy to want to unwind with mindless television instead of focusing on intimacy.

Additionally, our jobs often keep us focused on the future—constantly planning, scheduling, and working toward goals. However, sex requires a present state of mind. Sexual arousal cannot be scheduled, and expecting to feel desire after a grueling work day isn't always realistic. Connecting with and attracting your partner requires total commitment. If work leaves you feeling stressed, preoccupied and future-oriented, sex may feel like an extra burden on top of your existing workload.

5. Drinking Alcohol

While a glass of wine may seem like the perfect way to set your mood, alcohol can have a detrimental effect on your libido. Contrary to popular belief, alcohol is a depressant, meaning it suppresses your mood and lowers your libido. While it may give you a temporary confidence boost, when it comes to performance, things can get messy, awkward, and ultimately less satisfying.

Moreover, alcohol can also cause vaginal dehydration, leading to vaginal dryness, decreased sexual pleasure, discomfort during sexual intercourse, and difficulty in achieving orgasm. So while alcohol may seem like a quick fix, it can ultimately hinder rather than enhance your sexual experience.

Sexy couple having intimate foreplay session on bed

6. Past negative sexual experiences

Negative experiences in bed, such as feeling unsatisfied or experiencing discomfort, can significantly affect your desire to engage in sexual activity. Sex is intertwined with complex emotions, and when faced with adverse encounters, it's natural to associate those feelings with sex as a whole. Similar to odor recognition, where specific smells trigger memories, past sexual experiences can also evoke unsatisfactory or uncomfortable memories.

To address these negative thoughts, consider having an honest conversation with your partner about your feelings. Expressing your concerns can help you process what happened and potentially alleviate worries about future encounters. Additionally, talking to a trusted friend or seeking professional support can provide valuable perspective and help overcome these negative emotions.

Additionally, for people who have experienced sexual or physical abuse, the trauma can severely impact sexual desire. If you are a survivor, it is important to communicate with your partner any discomfort or triggers related to sexual activity. You're not obligated to reveal every detail of your past, but making your reservations public can help ease the burden of negative sex-related emotions. 

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