Female Sexual Dysfunction

What is Female Sexual Dysfunction?

Sexual dysfunction is any type of problem that prevents you or your partner from experiencing sexual satisfaction. As we age, the likelihood of sexual dysfunction grows, but it can occur at any point in your life.

Why is Female Sexual Health Important?

Sexuality is associated with overall health, happiness, and well-being. Sexual dysfunction can lead to personal distress and a strain on your intimate relationships.

Many women experience sexual health issues, but most don’t speak up about their problems. Sharing your concerns will increase clinical awareness and encourage more discussion.

Female Sexual Dysfunction Disorders and Symptoms

Here are some sexual dysfunction conditions and how you may experience them. The disorders listed below have one thing in common: they can all cause significant personal distress.
Arousal/Desire Disorders
  • Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder
    • Persistent/recurrent deficiency of sexual thoughts or desire for sexual activity. May also include a lack of interest in reciprocating intimate advances.
Pain Disorders

Dyspareunia
• Persistent or recurrent genital pain associated with sexual intercourse

Vaginismus
• Involuntary spasm of outer vaginal muscles interfering with intercourse

Vulvodynia
• Chronic discomfort, burning, or irritation during intercourse

Low Libido

When your libido is low, you have little or no desire for sex.

Causes of Female Sexual Dysfunction

Sexual responses in men and women are complex and can vary person to person. Similarly, the causes of sexual dysfunction can differ from one individual or couple to another.
Aging Concerns

As we age, our hormone levels begin to decline. Testosterone levels begin to dip as early as our 30s and estrogen deficiency typically develops in the 40s.

Hormonal shifts during the menopausal journey can lead to physical and emotional changes affecting daily life.

  • Estrogen deficiency may contribute to vaginal dryness
  • Testosterone deficiency is associated with energy depletion and decreased erotic stimulation and sensitivity
Medical Conditions

Cardiovascular disease, diabetes, thyroid disease, and chronic pain conditions are a few diagnoses that can contribute to sexual dysfunction partly due to physical limitations.

Medication Causes

Anti-depressants like selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and selective norepinephrine receptor inhibitors (SNRIs) can impact testosterone levels and affect libido.

Oral contraceptives can affect sexual satisfaction – it’s important to find the right fit.

Relationship Considerations

Difficulty communicating with your partner about intimacy issues can add to the stress you feel. If your person is struggling with sexual dysfunction, that difficulty can echo across a partnership.

See our content on Couplepause to learn more.

Diagnosis

  • Schedule a visit with your doctor to discuss your medical and sexual history and allow time for a physical exam.
  • Explain your symptoms in detail. It will help your health care provider pinpoint the root cause of your condition.
  • Remember that despite the delicate nature of the subject, being open and honest with your doctor about your struggles will help you find the best way forward together.

Female Sexual Dysfunction Therapy

Therapy should target the root cause of the sexual dysfunction. There are many elements to this condition and a wide range of options to fit personalized sexual needs. Causes of Female Sexual DysfunctionSexual health and wellness for you may look completely different for someone else; everyone has their own intimacy goals and level of comfort.

Female Sexual Dysfunction Therapy

The options below represent a small portion of the therapies available. Your healthcare provider may have additional recommendations depending on your diagnosis.
Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT)

Single or multi-ingredient hormone therapy may break down barriers to achieving sexual intimacy and enjoyment.

Estrogen

Estrogen plays a key role in urogenital health. It can also impact overall mood and readiness for sexual intimacy.

Testosterone

Androgens like testosterone are important for sexual satisfaction and desire.

Progesterone & DHEA

Other hormones like progesterone or DHEA may help with underlying aging issues that could be preventing you from reaching sexual success.

Available Dosage Forms
  • Systemic Therapies
    • Oral tablets or capsules
    • Fast-burst sublingual tablets
    • Topical creams or gels
Localized Therapies
  • Vaginal preparations like creams or suppositories are designed to deliver your customized medication to where the body needs it most.
Pellet Therapy
  • Hormonal pellets are roughly the size of a grain of rice. Your health care provider inserts the pellet into the fatty tissue of your buttocks.
  • Once in place, the pellet will release a steady stream of hormone into the bloodstream over 3 to 4 months.
Oxytocin
  • Oxytocin is a hormone. When it is released into certain parts of the brain it can affect emotional behaviors, such as bonding.
  • Taking oxytocin orally or nasally may impact how sexually receptive you are. It can also increase nipple and clitoral sensitivity while improving your potential for orgasm.
Sildenafil/Tadalafil
  • These commercially available products typically prescribed for sexual dysfunction are not just for men. They can be compounded into vaginal creams for topical application prior to intercourse.
  • Referred to as ‘scream creams,’ these preparations can enhance your sexual experience.
Non-Pharmacologic Therapies
  • Over the counter vaginal lubricants and moisturizers may help with vaginal dryness and promote enjoyable intercourse.
  • Mechanical devices may also enhance your sexual experience.
  • Counseling
    • Addressing the physical issues preventing you from enjoying sexual intimacy is important, but psychological reasons may also be present.
    • Seeking out a health care professional to better understand what could be happening emotionally is critical to your progress.

How Belmar Can Help

  • Belmar compounds bioidentical hormones and female sexual health medications in a variety of dosage forms, strengths, and combinations to help you feel more like yourself again. Dosage forms include injectable pellets, oral and sublingual tablets, blended creams, and injectables. We’re focused on ensuring your prescriber has the right medication to fit your specific needs so that you can enjoy the best health and lifestyle possible.
  • If you are having any problems with sexual functioning, contact us for more information and start a conversation with your doctor. Together, you can decide if a compounded prescription might be the right option for you.

Contact Belmar Pharma Solutions

Learn More

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