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Causes of low libido in women

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Low libido is the condition in which a woman’s sexual urge or drive lessens. This is common amongst women across the world but is uncannily difficult to determine and measure. Every woman’s sexual needs and habits are very different and what can be a lowered libido for one may not hold true for the other. However, in most cases the causes behind decrease in sexual urge can varied, complex and difficult to ascertain.

Some of the primary causes of low libido are:

Age – As a woman grows older, the urge for sex diminishes. While the same holds true for men, the desire for sex decreases more in women. It is generally seen that women in late 40’s and 50’s have a diminished urge for sex which characterizes low libido. Women also see an imbalance in levels of progesterone, estrogen, and testosterone during menopause which can affect libido.

Birth control medications – There is evidence that prolonged use of birth control medication can lead to low libido in women. The reason behind this is that women needs free testosterone to have a good libido. Birth control pills ten to increase the level of a protein called serum hormone binding globulin (SHBG). Testosterone tends to stick to SHBG and as a result there is less free testosterone in circulation. This reduces the libido in women.

Problem in adrenal glands – The adrenal glands sit right on top of the kidneys and are vital when it comes to a women’s libido. Adrenal glands produce DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) which finally results in female sex hormones androgens and estrogens. It also produces some amount of testosterone. Any problem or disorder in the adrenal glands can lessen libido in women.

Diseases – Diseases can also hamper the sexual drive in women. Diseases lead to a feeling of general unpleasantness and the sexual urge can diminish significantly.  Many heart disease, thyroid or other hormone imbalance, diabetes, hypertension can significantly lower libido in women.

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Alcohol – While there has been little or no scientific study on the relation of alcohol and effect on libido, prolong and heavy intake of alcohol is generally know to lower sexual drive. Alcoholism leads to dehydration and increase in blood pressure. It is also known to lessen the level of testosterone in the body. This ultimately leads to low libido in women.

Mental wellbeing – Mental health of a woman is very important to maintain a healthy libido. Problems such as anxiety or depression, stress at work or in the house all contribute the mental fatigue. Stress directly affects the working of the adrenal gland and hence it is very important to resolve all conflicts and maintain a happy life.

Insecurity about body – Sex is an intimate thing and when a woman views her body in negative light, it might become a libido killer. It is very important for a woman to feel good about her body and look over any physical flaw that she may have. Low self –esteem because of physical flaws can cause a lot of distress and lead to low libido.

Relationship issues – If there is tension in the relationship the urge and the drive for sex will reduce considerably. Couples who are constantly in a conflict will find it very difficult to get intimate and hence it is very important to iron out any issues. Prolong relationship issues can lead to low libido in women.

Nutrition – It is very important to maintain a healthy and good diet. Deficiency of certain nutrition can also lower libido. Vitamin A, Vitamins B-5, B-6, B-12, Vitamin C and Vitamin E are all necessary for maintaining a good libido. Any drop in levels of such nutrition can lead to a lower libido.

In addition to all the above other reasons like lack of exercise, low thyroid function and sexual performance anxiety can also lead to a low libido.

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Written by: Saptakee sengupta
Date last updated: April 12, 2015

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