Sexual Dysfunctions in Women

Facts About Sexual Dysfunctions in Women

  • Sexual problems are very common in the adult South African population. Sometimes the problems are so persistent and arduous that one speaks of a sexual dysfunction. About one out of nine South Africans have experienced sexual dysfunction within the past year
  • For women, the most frequent problems lack of desire, arousal and orgasm and intercourse pain and vaginal spasm. Sexual dysfunction can be caused by both biological, psychological and social / cohabitation conditions and treatment depends naturally of the problems cause. In some cases (eg, vaginal dryness), a sexual dysfunction easily remedied, while in other cases (eg orgasm problems after a sexual assault) may take considerably longer
  • Whatever the problems, causes and severity is the first step, however, to recognize the problems, speak openly and honestly with its possible. partner and consider asking experts for advice

What is sexual dysfunction?

Sexual dysfunction means you have difficulty achieving sexual pleasure, you expect. You may find that you do not have sex, have difficulty becoming sexually aroused or orgasm. You may have pain during intercourse or vaginal spasm, making intercourse impossible.

The most common sexual complaint in women is of little or no desire for sex. But sexual problems are often linked. If you do not have sex, it can be difficult to get excited and harder to enjoy and orgasm. The same applies to sexual intercourse pain which is not surprising affect the desire and the ability to enjoy sex negatively.

Sexual dysfunction can be a result of mental or physical illness, but it can also be a problem in itself.

How prevalent is sexual dysfunction?

We do not know exactly how often women experience one or more sexual dysfunctions. It depends on how you ask, and there are big differences in body and sexuality perception from culture to culture and from woman to woman. At the individual woman problem may also vary over time and with changing circumstances of life, and something that experienced problematic in one phase of life may be less important in another.

A recent South African study among 16 to 95-year-old saw that 7% of women had felt dry vagina during the past 12 months. 6% had difficulty achieving orgasm, 3% had had sexual intercourse pain, and less than 1% had experienced vaginal spasm. There was not asked to libido in this study.

Most sexual dysfunctions occur at a time when sex life has worked for many years. But some women have had sexual problems as long as they can remember. For some, the problems associated with a particular partner (or certain situations), whereas sex life with other partners (or in other situations) works fine. For other items problems at once they have occurred.

Sexual dysfunction affects naturally both parties in a relationship and therefore accept and treat you usually have a sexual dysfunction as a parproblem. In some cases, a sexual dysfunction reflect conflicts in the relationship. Therefore, a professional (eg a doctor, a psychologist or sexologist) typically spend a long time to understand the circumstances surrounding a woman who complains about a sexual problem.

Sexologists distinguish between dysfunctions and problems, and the former is the most serious because they are persistent (or recurrent) and causing the woman problems. About one in nine sexually active women and men have had a dysfunction within the past year. Easier and more transient sexual problems is, however, much more frequently. Nearly two-thirds of both men and women may experience sexual problems at times.

Factors that affect the sexual life

A variety of factors are associated with decreased desire and can affect the ability to become sexually aroused and achieve orgasm and feel satisfaction with sex life. Both biological, psychological and social factors can come into play, and often there will be a mixture. At the biological level, chronic illness and treatment (eg cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular disease) can cause sexual problems, and also an unhealthy lifestyle (obesity, lack of exercise, smoking and abuse of alcohol, marijuana or drugs) can affect sexual function negatively.

On the psychological level, for example, fatigue (eg in connection with pregnancy and maternity), stress, performance anxiety, sadness and poor self-esteem lead to sexual problems. The same lack of knowledge and unrealistic notions of what is “normal”. If, for example, most of his knowledge from pornography, you often have difficulty recognizing his own experiences, and you may even think that you are abnormal because they do not have sex like porn models on the Internet. Many are not aware that most women easiest orgasm by their clitoris stimulated and not intercourse.

On the social level, especially tensions and conflicts in the relationship result in sexual problems and dysfunctions. If a woman living in an abusive or otherwise destructive relationship, it is not any wonder that she loses the desire for sex. In addition, cultural norms (eg that “nice girls”, old people or chronically ill are not interested in sex) may affect the individual woman’s desire and ability to sex. Similarly, a restrictive and “sexforskrækket” childhood and upbringing could mean that you get a warped relationship with his own body and sexuality.

Many of the couples seeking help in solving sexual problems, find it difficult to talk openly about the problems. It may mean that the sexual problems over time develops into intimacy problems because the couple avoids physical contact and caresses that feels conflicted. In this way there will be a fear of closeness that amplifies the problems, and the Parties shall further and further apart.

Clarification of the problem

When you go to see a therapist because of a sexual problem, it is your experience and your description of the problem that counts. Often, it is appropriate that you and your partner together meetings with the doctor or therapist. Optionally, the partners meet once in turn. For the doctor, there are many conditions that it is important to establish. Prepare therefore to meet the following questions:

  • Do you want sex?
  • Can you become sexually aroused?
  • Do you orgasm?
  • Is there a good emotional relationship between you and your partner?
  • Are you physically and mentally healthy? And you take medicine?
  • How has your past sexual experiences been?
  • Have you been sexually abused or sexually experienced unpleasant situations?
  • Do you have specific concerns related to sexual activity?
  • Do you feel that you spend sufficient time on the erotic foreplay?
  • Did you tell your partner how you most easily become sexually aroused?
  • Do you have sexual fantasies?
  • Do you masturbate?

Blood tests and other investigations usually have no place in the investigation of sexual dysfunctions. The explanation is very rare hormonal disorder. The practitioner may make a general health check, and if you have pain associated with intercourse, a gynecological examination usually be appropriate.

What treatments are available?

Choice of treatment depends on what your problem is and how it occurred. This is an area that is sparsely explored and you do not therefore know for sure how good the different treatments. Drugs usually have no effect unless the problem is vaginal dryness after menopause . In this case, treatment with estrogen , possibly. only locally in the vagina, good effect

Psychological treatment appears to give the best results. So-called cognitive behavioral therapy directed at identifying the factors that contribute to sexual dysfunction. This could be inappropriate thoughts of great expectations, performance anxiety or fear of giving them to enjoy sex. Cognitive behavioral therapy aims to better the couple emotional closeness and communication and to improve the erotic stimulation.

Another sexological treatment is to be aware of and train different stages of intercourse. Sometimes used so-called sensuality training. The exercise consists in that you touch each other’s bodies, but in the beginning avoid the areas that are perceived as most erotic: Gender, breasts and anus. Later expands to touch the whole body, and after a while one must also have intercourse. Exercise increases intimacy, tenderness and intimacy and intend that the couple learns each other’s bodies better to know and achieve closer emotional contact.

At painful intercourse

Pain during intercourse, there may be a physical cause of the problem – for example, endometriosis , dry mucous membranes or benign fibroids in the uterus. When these conditions are treated, disappear pain usually too. A special mode is made up of vaginal spasms (vaginismus), wherein the pelvic floor muscles surrounding the vaginal opening withdraws spasmodically and painful together by attempts to introduce a finger, a penis, a dildo or other of the vagina. The state may have lasted a lifetime, and in some cases – but far from always – due to the sexual trauma in childhood or adolescence. Vaginismus can be successfully treated with behavioral therapeutic exercises where you learn his body’s reactions to knowing and practicing in bringing ever greater stakes into the vagina. This is a special task for gynecologists or doctors trained sexologists with special training.

When it is due to illness or treatment

If sexual dysfunctions caused by disease or treatment, it is important to make sure that the basic disease is best controlled. It is also important to talk openly and honestly with your partner about the problems, to jointly find new and satisfying ways to have sex. If you have pain, shortness of breath or movement restrictions (as for example arthritis and COPD), you may need to experiment with new sexual positions. It may require advice from the doctor (ask if you are unsure!), But the key is that you dare to communicate openly with his partner, avoiding misunderstandings and doubts.

In the case of sexual side effects of medications (eg certain antidepressants), it’s a good idea to talk to his doctor about reducing the dose or switch preparation. Remember, you should never change the dose or preparation on their own, as it can be dangerous!

Pelvic Floor Exercises

Evidence suggests that women with good sense of their pelvic floor (obtained through regular pelvic floor exercises) find it easier to control their sexual function. Also men can probably benefit from training their pelvic floor.

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