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Arousal is the feeling of being turned on sexually. Your penis or clitoris may get erect hardengorged, and sensitive, and you may feel wetness on your vulva or vaginaor on the tip of your penis. You can become aroused from sexual stimulation alone or with a partner, fantasizing or having sexual thoughts, or reading, watching, or listening to erotic materials like porn. Arousal can also happen when certain parts of your body are touched that are very sensitive also called "erogenous zones". But not everyone feels sexually aroused from touch. Feeling aroused can lead to many physical reactions or none at all.
Sexual problems become more common in men and women as they age. Other factors can cause it in younger people. Stress, illness, medicines, or emotional problems can contribute to sexual dysfunction. Talk to your doctor if it lasts longer than a few months. Tell your doctor if it interferes with your relationship with your partner.
Anything you tell your doctor is private. Your doctor can diagnose the problem. He or she can treat it. Many things can cause problems in your sex life. This includes certain medicines oral birth control and chemotherapydiseases diabetes or high blood pressureexcessive alcohol use or vaginal and urinary infections. Additional causes include depression, relationship problems, and abuse current or past. Hormones play a part in sexual dysfunction for men and women.
Low male and female hormones lead to less sexual desire. Hormones decrease in men and women as they age.
Female hormones can change during pregnancy, right after childbirth, or when you are breastfeeding. After menopausemany women feel less sexual desire. Also, menopause causes vaginal dryness, which can lead to pain during sex. At any age, the stresses of everyday life can cause sexual dysfunction.
Being tired from a busy job or caring for young children may affect your sexual desire. You may also be bored by a long-standing sexual routine. Having an honest talk with your doctor can contribute to a diagnosis.
Your doctor may be able to diagnose the problem from your description of the problem, your age, and stresses in your life. He or she may do a physical exam and lab tests, as well. The process of aging cannot be prevented. Yet, there are many things men and women can do to reduce the impact of sexual dysfunction. This includes learning more about your body and how it works. Depending on the cause of your sexual dysfunction, you may or may not have to live with it.
Talk with your doctor about possible causes and treatments. Talk with a sex therapist or counselor if needed. This article was contributed by: familydoctor.
What’s a sex drive?
This information provides a general overview and may not apply to everyone. Talk to your family doctor to find out if this information applies to you and to get more information on this subject. Sex between two consenting adults can boost your emotional and physical wellbeing. In fact, sexual activity can result in…. As you age, your sexual health will change. But growing older doesn't have to mean the end of sex. Sexual health impacts your physical, mental, emotional, and social well-being.
Getting educated and respecting yourself and others is key. Visit The Symptom Checker. Food Poisoning. Acute Bronchitis. Eustachian Tube Dysfunction. Bursitis of the Hip. Abnormal Uterine Bleeding.
High Blood Pressure. Table of Contents. Health Benefits of a Good Sex Life. Sexuality in Older Adults. Importance of Sexual Health. What is sexual dysfunction in men and women? Symptoms of sexual dysfunction in men and women It is common for couples to have problems with sex at some time in their relationship. Women have five types of sexual problems: Desire disorders.
No longer having an interest in sex. Having less of a desire than you used to have.
Arousal disorders. Orgasmic disorders. You are unable to have an orgasm or you have pain during orgasm. Sexual pain disorders. When you experience pain during or after sex. Hormone deficiency: Reduced estrogen the primary female hormone can affect sexual desire. Men have four types of sexual problems: Erectile dysfunction: Difficulty getting or keeping an erection.
Desire disorders No longer having an interest in sex. Having less interest than you used to have. Problems with ejaculation: Premature ejaculation too early or delayed taking longer than normal or not at all. Low testosterone: Reduced levels of the male hormone, testosterone.
What causes sexual dysfunction in men and women?
How is sexual dysfunction in men and women diagnosed? Can sexual dysfunction in men and women be prevented or avoided? Also: Ask your doctor about the side effects of the medicines you take. Talk to him or her about surgeries and health conditions.
Scope of the problem
Treating underlying health conditions, such as diabetes, may help. Talk with a counselor or mental health professional if you are depressed, stressed or having relationship issues. Reduce your alcohol consumption, eat healthy, and get regular exercise. Fantasizing may increase your desire. For women, Kegel exercises squeezing and relaxing the muscles of your vagina may increase arousal. Try sexual activity other than intercourse, such as massage, oral sex, or masturbation. Do not use recreational drugs or abuse opioids.
Sexual dysfunction in men and women treatment If desire is the problem, try changing your usual routine. Try having sex at different times of the day, or try a different sexual position.
Talk with your partner about your likes and dislikes. Talk with your doctor about the side effects of the medicines you are taking and the use of hormone replacement therapy. Arousal disorders can be treated for women with the use a vaginal cream or sexual lubricant for dryness. If you have gone through menopause, talk to your doctor about taking estrogen or using an estrogen cream.
Men who are dealing with arousal disorders should talk with their partners to discuss ways to improve arousal such as foreplay or fantasies. Talk with your doctor about prescription treatment options one example: Viagra. However, Viagra and hormone replacement therapy have immediate and long-term side effects. For women, pain during sex can be treated with hormone replacement therapy, different positions, or vaginal lubricants. For men and women, emptying your bladder before you have sex may help.
What is sexual arousal?
Taking a warm bath before sex may help. Your doctor can help you find the cause of your pain and decide what treatment is best for you.
Living with sexual dysfunction in men and women Depending on the cause of your sexual dysfunction, you may or may not have to live with it. Is there something wrong with me?
Symptoms of sexual dysfunction in men and women
What can I do at home to help with my sexual problems? Could my symptoms be a of a more serious condition? Are there medical tests that could diagnose my problem? What should I do? Is it safe for me to have sex?