Got all hyped out before having an intercourse but left feeling unsatisfied? Faking an orgasm to keep your partner happy? Having pain during sexy time? Well then you might be having some form of sexual dysfunction!
Did you know 43% of women and 31% of men have some degree of sexual dissatisfaction! Yet, it’s still a no no topic among couples. Treatment options are available, thus it is important to share your concerns with your partners!
Sexual dysfunction happens during any phase of the sexual response cycle that averts the individual or couple from experiencing satisfaction from the sexual activity. The sexual response cycle traditionally includes excitement, plateau, orgasm, and resolution. Two main components of the excitement phase of the sexual response are desire and arousal.
What are the types of sexual dysfunction?
Sexual dysfunction generally is classified into four categories:
- Desire disorders – loss or lack of sexual desire. This is the most common of female sexual dysfunctions. Even boredom with regular sexual routines can be a reason as well.
- Arousal disorders – Desire might be present but loss or lack of arousal or excitement during sexual activity. Insufficient vaginal lubrication in women may trigger the inability to become physically aroused during sexual activity. Problems with blood flow to the vagina and clitoris may also affect lubrication and arousal. Lubricants may help women become aroused more easily.
- Orgasm disorders – delay or absence of orgasm (climax) despite sufficient sexual arousal and ongoing stimulation. Many factors can contribute to anorgasmia, including sexual inhibition, inexperience, or lack of knowledge.
- Pain disorders – pain during intercourse, during sexual stimulation or vaginal contact. Painful intercourse can be a result of a number of conditions such as endometriosis, a pelvic mass, ovarian cysts, vaginitis, poor lubrication, vaginal dryness, the presence of scar tissue from surgery, or a sexually transmitted disease.
What are the symptoms of sexual dysfunction?
Sexual problems often develop when your hormones are not stable or declining, such as after having a baby or just as simple as aging factor. Major illnesses, such as cancer, diabetes, or heart and blood vessel (cardiovascular) disease, may also contribute to sexual dysfunction.
1. In men:
- Inability to achieve or maintain an erection suitable for intercourse (erectile dysfunction)
- Absent or delayed ejaculation despite adequate sexual stimulation (retarded ejaculation)
- Inability to control the timing of ejaculation (early or premature ejaculation)
2. In women:
- Inability to achieve orgasm (Anorgasmia)
- Inadequate vaginal lubrication before and during intercourse
- Inability to relax the vaginal muscles enough to allow intercourse
3. In men and women:
- Lack of interest in or desire for sex
- Inability to become aroused
- Pain with intercourse
4. Other risk factors:
- Depression or anxiety
- Heart and blood vessel diseases
- Neurological conditions, such as spinal cord injury or multiple sclerosis
- Gynecological conditions, such as vulvovaginal atrophy, infections or lichen sclerosus
- Medications, such as antidepressants or high blood pressure medications
- Emotional or psychological stress, especially involving both the partner
If you are always online, searching the net about yours or your partner’s symptoms, chances are one or both of you are already facing some form of issues!
The next best step would be to go to the doctors. It will be best to go to the clinic as a couple so that both can be tested and treated.
To diagnose sexual dysfunction, we may:
- Discuss sexual and medical history. This might be uncomfortable for some especially if you are seeing the opposite gender doctors, well we do know how everyone looks like anatomically, so there’s nothing much to hide! Your sexuality is a key part of your well-being. The more upfront you can be about your sexual history and current problems, the better your chances of finding an effective way to treat them. If you feel uncomfortable being open with your partner around, you can opt to see the doctors in turns.
- Perform a male genital exam : During the exam, we would check each testicle for lumps, tenderness, or changes in size. We also would check the penis to look for any deformities.
- Perform a female pelvic exam. During the exam, we would check for physical changes that affect sexual enjoyment, such as thinning of your genital tissues, decreased skin elasticity, scarring or pain.
- Some blood tests. If needed, we may recommend blood tests to check for underlying health conditions that might contribute to sexual dysfunction, such as hormonal tests.
Most cases of sexual dysfunction can be corrected just by treating the underlying physical or psychological problems.
Treatment strategies are as below :
- Medical treatment: This involves treatment of any physical problem that may be contributing to sexual dysfunction. Such as some forms of muscle relaxants in women to reduce pain during penetration.
- Medications: Very popular drugs such as Cialis, Levitra, or Viagra may help improve erectile function in men by increasing blood flow to the penis. In our clinic, Priligy, a drug used to treat premature ejaculation. The topical creams are applied to the penis and contain lidocaine, reducing sensitivity and allowing for more ejaculation control.
As for females, some lubricants can be prescribed to reduce the friction thus reducing pain during intercourse.
- Hormones: Men with low levels of testosterone may benefit from testosterone replacement therapy. Some would get injected and some would benefit from topicals as well. Females will be prescribed with Estrogen cream or tablet that benefits sexual function by improving vaginal tone and elasticity, increasing vaginal blood flow and enhancing lubrication.
- O-shot/ P-shot : These shots contain plasma rich platelets (PRP) that stimulates stem cells, collagen production, and blood vessels, which could lead to better orgasms and sex in the men and women.
- Psychological therapy: Therapy with a trained counselor can help a person address feelings of anxiety, fear, or guilt that may have an impact on sexual function.
- Education and communication: Education about sex and sexual behaviors and responses may help a man overcome his anxieties about sexual performance. Open dialogue with your partner about your needs and concerns also helps to overcome many barriers to a healthy sex life.
Coping and support
Do remember that at each stage of your life, everyone’s level of sexual desire, arousal and satisfaction can change.
For a better adaptation:
- Understand your body. Think of what makes for a healthy sexual response. The more you and your partner know about the physical aspects of your body and how it functions, the better able you’ll be to find ways to ease sexual difficulties.
- Gather information as much as you can. Educate yourself on issues such as dysfunction, aging, illnesses, pregnancy, menopause and medicines might affect your sex life.
- Communicate openly with your partner, after all you are trying hard to enjoy your sexy time with them. Be flexible in your approach to intimacy with your partner. Continue to engage in the areas of intimacy that are working well for the two of you.
- Sexual response often has as much to do with your feelings for your partner as it does with physical sexual stimuli. Re-discover each other and reconnect, this might sound simple but it will make A LOT of difference.