Perimenopause & Decreased Sex Drive

Menopause can be a difficult time physically, mentally and emotionally – especially when your sex life is affected. While a lower estrogen level is often the culprit for your loss of sexual desire, many other factors also influence interest in sex during menopause.

Other symptoms that you may be dealing with during this time can make sex the last thing on your mind. Fatigue, mood changes, or stress can also affect your libido.

What causes decreased sex drive?

Like all other menopause symptoms, decreased sex drive is caused by a change in hormone levels. Your body is creating less estrogen, which leads to changes in your sexual drive and functioning. The lower level of estrogen in your body decreases the blood supply to the vagina, which can make it more difficult to become aroused. Lower estrogen levels also cause vaginal dryness, which can make intercourse uncomfortable.

What can you do?

While many of the symptoms of menopause are physical, loss of sexual desire is also mental and emotional. Talk to your doctor about what’s going on. He or she may have practical recommendation such as over-the-counter lubricants. He or she may also refer you and your partner to a counselor who can help. You can also practice other forms of intimacy (other than intercourse) with your partner. For example, plan romantic dinners, go on dates or give each other massages.

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