loss of libido

Lost or low libido: 7 reasons why

How many times have you felt in the mood to dance the horizontal tango, only to find that your partner has one of those headaches?

If this becomes a regular thing, it can have an effect on your relationship. So it is important to understand your libido, especially if it starts to change.

A low libido, or a decrease in your libido, can be a sign of a number of different things that you should be aware of.

In some cases, it can be improved so knowing why it is the way it is can be important.

Low libido is something which can affect both men and women and whilst it is often linked to mood related factors, it can also be the sign of an underlying health condition.

1. Relationship problems

One of the most obvious reasons for having little or no sex drive could be due to problems in your relationship.

This might be as a result of a loss of sexual attraction, overfamiliarity with your partner, conflict within the relationship or even trust issues.

If you recognise any of these factors, then talking to your partner might help. You could also try relationship counselling to get to the bottom of your problems.

A loss of libido can affect anyone, although this is often overlooked for many men.

It might be helpful to take a look at our article on ‘Tips to boost libido for men’ if you feel that this is something affecting you.

2. Sexual problems

A decreased libido is not always an emotional subject; it can be the result of a physical problem too.

Complaints such as ejaculation problems, erectile dysfunction, vaginal dryness, painful sex and an inability to orgasm can result in low libido in men and women.1

Many of these issues can be addressed by a doctor, so do not be embarrassed to speak to a medical professional.

3. Mood related issues

Another cause of low libido can be due to factors external to your relationship, such as stress at work, family pressures and financial worries.

These often bring about feelings of stress, anxiety and exhaustion, which can have a huge influence on your happiness, and therefore your sex drive.

If this is the case, then you may want to consider making some changes to your lifestyle or speaking to someone for help in processing what you are feeling.

4. Menopause

The female sex drive and menopause are intrinsically linked, due to the lowering of sex hormones such as oestrogen. It can lead to vaginal dryness, a loss of interest in sex, mood swings and hot flushes which will all change how easy you find it to become aroused.2

This is completely natural and may be addressed through hormone replacement therapy (HRT), which should always be discussed with your GP first.

5. Depression

Depression is more than simply a change in mood, or a temporary feeling of being unhappy.3

This manifests as feeling of extreme sadness and hopelessness and a loss of interest in things that used to bring you pleasure.

It is something which can interfere with all aspects of your life and is frequently responsible for a female and male loss of libido.

If you recognise any of these symptoms in yourself or someone you love, it is important to speak to a doctor to look at the best form of therapy.

6. Hormonal changes

Hormones play a large part in our sex drive and so changes in our hormone levels can change a lot of things in our bodies.4

These changes tend to come about during pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding and are a major contributing factor in the loss of sex drive in women.

These times in our lives also lead to exhaustion and a change in priorities, so it is understandable that sex is not always top of a woman’s list at this time.

These issues should improve over time, but if it does not, it may be worth speaking to your GP.

7. Health issues

Any long-term medical issue can play a part in how we feel about ourselves and our partners.

They can create a physical and emotional strain, and the side effects of treatments or medicines can also alter your sex drive.

It is important to remember that there is no such thing as a normal libido.

Everyone’s sex drive is different, but if you feel that yours has changed, or is having a negative effect, then it might be worth exploring it further.

In some cases, it may be worth consulting your GP or a sex or relationship therapist.

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Last updated: 21 December 2020

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