A low sex drive is a common condition for women since libido naturally changes in response to hormones—like fluctuations during menstruation, pregnancy, or menopause—everyday life events, relationship developments, and the like. However, a loss of libido can become a problem if it is indicative of another condition, if it lasts for more than a few months, or if it causes a woman severe distress.
There are a great many factors that can cause low libido. For instance, it can be related to a disease, like chronic pain, Parkinson’s, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and the like. Even some medications, like antidepressants, narcotic pain pills, and chemotherapy drugs, can lower a person’s libido. A woman may have a desire for sex initially, but may become too stressed out and experience dyspareunia. Lastly, emotional stressors like anxiety, past sexual trauma, a poor self-image, a failing relationship, or disgust with a sexual partner can all contribute to a low libido.
Symptoms for a low sex drive may be hard to spot at first since every woman has her own personal sexual preferences. For instance, if a woman has a strong relationship, but she and her partner don’t have sex often and she’s not distressed about it, then she may not actually have an abnormal libido.
If a woman has a low libido, she usually is distraught about her condition, not having any sexually-charged fantasies, and not engaging in any sexual activities—even masturbation—for a prolonged period of time.
Hormones like estrogen or testosterone may be taken in either cream or pill form to improve sexual desire and correct any vaginal dryness or pain. If a woman has a low sex drive due to psychological issues, such as a poor body image or sexual trauma, she may want to consider counseling and an antidepressant that doesn’t lower libido. A woman may see improvements if she adjusts her diet and focuses on an exercise regimen. The Mediterranean diet and exercises like yoga have been shown to improve libido.