Loss of libido—also known as low sex drive and hypo active sexual desire disorder—is the absence of sexual desire. During menopause, this condition is linked to other symptoms many women experience in their post-reproductive years. While it is easy to explain the technical causes of loss of libido, many women find it difficult to recognize the physical, emotional, and mental signs. If you feel a lack of sexual desire, or a decrease in sexual urges, read on to learn more about loss of libido.
Stress, Anxiety, and Exhaustion
Stress, anxiety, and exhaustion can all negatively impact your sex life. If you feel you are constantly tired, stressed, or anxious, you may need to make some lifestyle changes or seek advice from a medical professional in order to improve your sex drive.
Lack of Interest in Sex
This is the most common sign of loss of libido in women. When linked to menopause, a lack of interest in sex can be due to a change in a woman's physical appearance and self-esteem, including weight gain, hair loss, mood swings, and depression.
Difficulty Becoming Aroused or Reaching Orgasm
Although sexual dysfunction and loss of libido are not considered the same condition, they often go hand-in-hand for women throughout menopause.
Fluctuating hormone levels that commonly occur during perimenopause can lead to vaginal dryness. This condition can cause painful intercourse, which reduces a woman's desire to engage in sexual activity.
Thinning of Vaginal Walls
Also linked to vaginal dryness, the atrophying of the vaginal walls—a condition in which they become thinner and less elastic—can also decrease the desire to have sex.
The inability to become aroused, coupled with the changing landscape of a woman's sex organs, may result in painful intercourse for her.
More Information about Loss of Libido
Approximately 20-40% of women experience a loss of libido during menopause. Common solutions include lifestyle changes, natural supplements, and medical treatment. Click on the following link to learn more about loss of libido and how to treat it.
- Channon, L.D., and Ballinger, S.E. "Some Aspects of Sexuality and Vaginal Symptoms during Menopause and their Relation to Anxiety and Depression." British Journal of Medical Psychology. June 1986. 59(2): 173-80.
- Sarell, Philip, M.D. "Psychosexual effects of menopause: Role of androgens." American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology. March 1999. 180: 3S-II.
- Studd, John. "Loss of Libido and Menopause." The Management of Menopause. Annual Review 1998. Partenon Publishing.