So many changes happen to our bodies at the time of menopause – some are very visible like hot flushes, or flashes as they are known in the US, and weight gain. Other symptoms are more hidden, such as lack of sex drive and dry vagina. These symptoms are difficult to talk about, and we know from our surveys that most women don’t even talk about to their best friends. This can be one of the most depressing aspects of menopause for most women feel that their sex life is over.
Throughout perimenopause and menopause, you might notice that your libido, or sex drive, is changing. Some women are lucky enough to experience an increase in libido, while others experience a decrease. Your interest in sexual interest and sexual enjoyment varies throughout your life, and the causes differ from woman to woman. According to one review, the reported rates of sexual problems in postmenopausal women are between 68 and 86.5 per cent. This range is much higher than in all women in general, which is estimated to be between 25 and 63 per cent.
This decrease in hormone levels can lead to vaginal dryness and tightness, which can cause pain during sex. Other menopause symptoms can also make you less interested in sex as we don’t feel confident and sexy as we once did.
These symptoms include:
- mood swings
- weight gain
- hot flushes
What is happening in your body?
Menopause can negatively affect libido in several ways. During menopause, your testosterone and oestrogen levels both decrease, which may make it more difficult for you to get aroused.
A decrease in oestrogen can lead to vaginal dryness. Lower levels of oestrogen lead to a drop in blood supply in the vagina, which can then negatively affect vaginal lubrication. It can also lead to thinning of the vaginal wall, known as vaginal atrophy. Vaginal dryness and atrophy often lead to discomfort during sex.
Other physical changes during menopause might also affect your libido. For example, many women gain weight during menopause, and discomfort with your new body can decrease your desire for sex. Hot flushes and night sweats are also common symptoms. These symptoms can leave you feeling too tired for sex. Other symptoms include mood symptoms, such as depression and irritability, which can dampen arousal and turn you off from sex.
Why does menopause affect libido?
Decreased oestrogen levels result in reduced blood flow to the vagina, which can cause the tissues of the vagina and labia to become thinner. If this happens, they become less sensitive to sexual stimulation.
Decreased blood flow also affects vaginal lubrication and overall arousal. As a result, a woman may not enjoy sex as much and may have difficulty achieving orgasm. Sex may be uncomfortable or even painful.
Fluctuating hormone levels during perimenopause and menopause can also affect a woman’s mental health, which in turn, may cause a decrease in her libido.
Stress can also impact a woman’s libido, as she may be juggling a job, parenting, and be caring for ageing parents. The changes in hormone levels a woman may experience during menopause may make her irritable or depressed, so dealing with everyday stress may feel more painful.
The information above may sound like doom and gloom, but there is help at hand, and there are changes you can make to your diet and lifestyle, which can change this around.
Rediscover what libido means to you
Libido is a complex aspect of sexuality. Many people are uncomfortable discussing it.
Finding new ways to transform arousal and moments of excitement — such as pelvic physical therapy or laser vaginal rejuvenation — also restore intimacy in relationships. The incorporation of lifestyle changes, technology, diet and supplements can together help maintain the results of arousal with vaginal lubrication and vaginal tissue changes.
Sex therapists are also extremely useful in helping foster a new sense of intimacy with partners. Their tips may include:
- Taking the pressure off needing to orgasm
- Changing sexual routines
- Focusing on foreplay – it doesn’t always need to include penetration
- Watching a sexy film together
- Incorporating vibrators and sex toys
Menopause isn’t just physical changes, psychological symptoms, such as anxiety, stress, and depression, can also happen. These changes can affect sexual intercourse and sexual desire.
There’s a plethora of therapies, medications, and resources for women in menopause that can address the sense of losing femininity and sexual attractiveness. Engaging in mind-body activities can help relieve those symptoms that interfere with sexual intimacy, desire, and even sleep quality. These include:
- Tai chi
Stress relief techniques can be explored extensively, as well. They can also improve sexual intimacy, stimulation, and feeling more comfortable with sexual activity after menopause.
Making some changes to diet can make a huge difference. Low levels of nutrients are common among women. In fact, research shows that billions of women around the world have nutritional deficiencies which affect both our brain chemistry and hormone function. Low levels of nutrients can also leave us functioning in what I call ‘economy mode’, making us feel tired and achy. In order to restore your mojo, you need to get your body back into good nutritional shape – making changes to your diet to make it healthier and including the right multivitamin is a good start. If you want to understand what other minerals and vitamins might also be missing, you can download my nutritional assessment tool. This tool will enable you to diagnose other supplements and food groups you need to include in your diet.
Taking specific supplements needed to reverse vaginal dryness is the next step. You need to focus on restoring the moisture in your vagina and repairing the tissues. It takes a while but is worth the patience. Consume naturally occurring oestrogen in your diet, like soya and flaxseeds, to help fool your brain into thinking you once again have circulating oestrogen which will help your body to start producing those mucus cells to lubricate your vagina. I highly recommend a product such as Pharma Nord Omega 7 Oil. This formulation has been through clinical trials and been shown to produce mucus in the vagina and to heal and restore the tissues and to make the vagina a comfortable environment.
The trials go on for 12 weeks, so to see a difference you will need to take it over that period to reap the benefits. You should find that in conjunction with an oestrogen rich diet, Omega 7 supplements will help you restore the conditions in your vagina so you can go back to having physical relations with your partner.
If you’re looking for a short term solution, you can use the Yes Water-Vaginal Moisturising Gel and your partner can use the Yes Oil-Based Organic Intimate Lubricant.
If you need more help with your libido then perhaps consider taking a supplement such as Lady Prelox which has been through clinical trials showing an improvement in sexual desire. Lady Prelox is the first natural and science-based female sexual pleasure formula on the market. It contains key natural ingredients that work together to enhance pleasure, desire, and comfort. It can take up to 12 weeks to take effect, so don’t give up.MonaLisa® Touch
For those who need help with more problematic vaginal dryness, there is a relatively new breakthrough in research showing that laser therapy can help to heal vaginal tissues. In effect, it will effectively turn back your biological clock in that area of our body, restoring comfort and therefore making penetration pain free and once again enjoyable. Laser therapy is now helping women to restore their vaginal tissues by restoring collagen fibres that have deteriorated. Powerful thermal heating and micro-ablation are applied to layers of vaginal tissue, stimulating collagen regeneration, rejuvenating the elastin fibres and blood supply to the area, which also restores lubrication and the pH in the vagina.
Don’t buy into the fact that your mojo has left the building – it can be rekindled! As we age, it’s natural for us to change — physically and otherwise. After you go through menopause, your sexual desires can change, too. It’s essential to understand your body so you can know what pleasures you. Remind yourself that the result will hopefully be great sex and lots of orgasms. After going through my programme, many women report having better sex than they can remember.
For more information about finding your mojo again, you can join our FREE Virtual Class, Rekindling Your Libido, and receive our FREE download.
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