Female Sexual Arousal Disorder : Top 3 causes

Read to know about the symptoms, physiological and psychological aspects concerned to Female Sexual Arousal Disorder  :

A simple example of Female Sexual Arousal Disorder

Selena looked worried. Her friend Simone wanted to confess to her that day as it was enough for her to see her friend suffering silently.  

Simone: “What is bothering you so much?” 

Selena: “I think I am on a verge of break up with Jane” 

Simone was shocked to hear this as she always thought Selena and Jane are one true couple. She requested for the reason.  

Selena: “We have problems with sexual intimacy, I don’t get aroused and it has been happening since the beginning. No matter how many times I prepare my mind, I am not able to have a good sex life. Initially it didn’t disturb us, but these days he isn’t very happy and thinks there is something wrong either with him or in our relationship” 

Simone: “Have you tried talking to a doctor, may be?” 

Selena: “A little hesitant to talk about sex life with the doctor. I don’t like to get judged that I am sexually active without wedding” 

Simone had to convince a lot to Selena to think about the real physiological or psychological aspects that are contributed for her condition.  

Professional medical help confirmed that Simone is struggling with female sexual arousal disorder.  

Simone is one of many women who is going through this phase of confusion and pain.  

Let us learn what this disorder about:  

What is Female Sexual Arousal Disorder?

Female sexual disorder happens when the female body doesn’t respond to any sexual stimulation. It is a physical condition with a deep-rooted mental health issues. It refers to the lack of desire of sexual activity.

Many women experience these sexual problems at some point in their lives, and some may have to deal with throughout the life (if not treated).  

We must understand that female sexual dysfunction can occur at any stage of life.  

Female sexual dysfunction is an umbrella term that involves: 

Note that a few symptoms are faced regularly during a sexual intercourse and there are a few individuals who suffer from this occasionally. Given below are the symptoms:  

  1. Decrease in the sexual desire. A female might start losing interest in sex. It could also add up with stress and anxiety.  
  1. One rarely thinks about sex.  
  1. Little initiation of the sexual activity and she is unreceptive towards partner’s initiation.  
  1. Decreased pleasure and sexual excitement during sex. No response from your body for sexual stimulation.  
  1. Unable to get arousal from internal or external sexual cues, sexual intimacy, recalling an erotic fantasy, watching pornography.  
  1. Not having arousal sensations in the erogenous area (genital or non-genital) during sex.  
  1. Difficult in feeling orgasm after sufficient sexual arousal and ongoing stimulation  

It is difficult to undergo this situation where one will not get arousal without understanding the reasons behind it:  

The reasons could be psychological, hormonal, anatomical and others.  Arousal causes many events in the body. Blood flows to the tissues around the genital area causing swelling. The vaginal opening and clitoris increase, thus the body produces natural vaginal lubricant. Any interruption in the process affects arousal process.  

Female sexual arousal disorder complaints are common, approximately affecting 40 percent of women. This dysfunction is complex and poorly understood condition that affects women of all ages. Sexual problems can be classified as sexual complaints , dysfunction and disorders. These disorders could also be associated with personal distress.

Causes of Female Sexual Arousal Disorder:

 1.Psychological causes:  

  • Low self-esteem 
  • Feeling bad about body image  
  • Mental health issues like: stress/anxiety/depression/bi-polar disorders  
  • There could be a case of trauma  
  • Negative thoughts, guilt of not being able to satisfy the partner  
  • Possibility of being in an abusive relationship  

2.Hormonal causes:  

Naturally secreted hormones in the body can level up the ability to be aroused.  Things that might interrupt the process:  

  • Menopause  
  • Birth control pills  
  • Pregnancy  

However, there is still no proper equation between hormonal levels and sexual function.  

3.Anatomical causes:  

Arousal most of the time depends on circulatory and nervous system. Some anatomical problems could be:  

  • Reduction in the blood flow to vagina  
  • Damage of nerves in pelvis  
  • Vaginal or bladder infection 
  • Thinning and drying of vaginal tissues 

Some other causes that can cause this disorder:  

  • Antidepressants and medications related to serotonin  
  • Chemotherapy or radiation  
  • Trouble getting adequate stimulation  
  • Diabetes can affect nervous and vascular systems.  

Risk factors  :

  • Depression /anxiety / stress  
  • Problem in heart and blood vessels  
  • Spinal cord injury or multiple sclerosis  
  • Gynaecological conditions like vulvovaginal atrophy, infections or lichen sclerosus 
Treatment for Female Sexual Arousal Disorder:

Depending on the underlying cause treatments include medication, therapy or both.  

For the physical causes:  

  • Hormonal therapy for low estrogen, vaginal dryness, pain during intercourse  
  • An individual who is suffering from this may also have to work with a therapists in sexual health to address the elements that are troubling.  
  • Being open about the situation with your partner can help you to calm down and reduce performance anxiety. Your partner will be able to understand the underlying reasons for your non-arousal during sexual activity.  
How to deal with Female Sexual Arousal Disorder?

What does the study show?  

Female sexual arousal disorder is one of the most talked about sexual dysfunction amongst worldwide.

Low sexual desire and problems with the arousal vary widely by age, cultural setting, duration of the symptoms, demographics, countries that deal with high mental health issues in woman.  

Study shows that 3.3 percent of female participants between the ages of 18 and 44 suffer from female sexual arousal disorder, whereas 7.5 percent of participants between the ages of 45 and 64 experience it.  

 How to diagnose it?  

Female sexual arousal disorder involves a combination of many underlying conditions. Doctors can investigate through several means.  

  • Firstly, an individual should prepare their mind to face series of questions about mental and sexual health, sex life. Later, they might ask for pelvic examination to understand if there is an infection or a nerve damage.  
  • Doctors can also ask for complete blood count test to understand the overall health of an individual.  
  • If there are no physical causes the consultation will route to the mental health professional to probe into it. ( we are referring to sex therapists and counsellors) 
  • It is always necessary to seek professional help though there are many resources on internet. Through resources one can only get an overview about the disorder.  

Many women face quite a lot of sexual dysfunctions which can be alarming. This should not corner you out and make you depressed and isolated.  

We understand that the situation is frustrating, but it can be treated by connecting to proper set of doctors and respective treatments.  

Coping with Female Sexual Arousal Disorder can be tough. There are a lot of therapies, medicines and educational methods for the treatment. Despite all of this, it is very important to have an open communication with your partner.

Motivation from the partner can make it easy to establish and reach common goals. Dealing with this disorder can be demotivating and hopeless many times. One has to keep working with doctors and therapists to device a treatment plan that works for both of you.

Always try to advocate your own

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Bhanu Shree

Bhanu Shree is a seasoned psychologist with over five years of specialized experience in child and adolescent psychology, particularly in addressing learning difficulties and ADHD. A respected mentor in mental health, she offers transformative guidance to adolescents facing various psychological challenges. Beyond her clinical expertise, Shree is an acclaimed author, contributing insightful perspectives on addiction and youth mental health issues. Her work is widely recognized for treatment in the mental health field.

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