When I received today’s ask the doctor question I wasn’t quite sure how to address it in a mass blog post. I will tell you though that probably 90% of my women patients all say they would like a boost in this area so this is a huge topic that affects most women. Our society talks easily about men’s erectile dysfunction thanks to the many ads on the television but little is said about women’s issues. So, if this makes you uncomfortable in any way then stop reading right now.
Q: What are the causes of low libido in women?
1. Vaginal dryness:
There are over the counter preparations that you can insert vaginally that may help minor dryness (Walgreens carries one called Luvena). Vaginal lubrication jelly or vaginal K-Y beads often help during intercourse (found in your drugstore). For a more significant result prescription vaginal creams work very well. I usually recommend vaginal creams with estriol (a weak estrogen) combined with hyaluronic acid or even testosterone. Women with hormonal cancers can use vaginal cream with hyaluronic acid only. These truly do help and once you have done a loading dose of nightly application for about 10-14 nights you only use it 2-3 times a week. A vaginal laser procedure called the Mona Lisa may have some benefits for vaginal dryness, too.
2. Psychological :
This one is just tough. An exercise I have given my patients before may just help you pull out of the rut you are in. Here is the challenge: Next time you are super stressed and are overwhelmed with all you have to accomplish you need to have one of those little bubbles pop up for your thoughts that tells you “I need to have sex”. Then go tap your mate on the shoulder and make time for that “O”. Notice how you feel when you achieve that and focus on just that sensation for several minutes. You have now made a conscious link between stress reduction and sex. Your mate gets the added bonus of you initiating.
Of course, many deeper psychological issues need some professional counseling so please talk to someone. There are counselors that specialize in sexual issues so just be aware they exist. You are NOT the only woman in this world having issues regardless what the latest cosmo sex poll says so find help!
Salveo W-Desire for women and M-Desire for men
I have recommended a variety of supplements over the years that have helped men get a little boost but haven’t really found one for women that really worked. I’m hoping that is about to change! There is a newer product out that I am hopeful will fill an important void for women called Salveo W – desire formula for women. It’s only been on the market a few months and I have just gotten it in stock and am needing some patient feedback on whether or not they notice an improvement. So, I am going to do a mini study evaluating this. Basically, here is the trial. I am looking for women (and men because they have a men’s version, too) to take this supplement daily until the bottle is gone and then let us know if they noticed an effect. I don’t want details of your sex life! I just want to know if this product helped increase your interest in having sex. For participating in the study, we are giving everyone 30% off the supplement who wants to try it during the month of June. They have a men’s version too so this is open to men also.
The supplement has all natural ingredients that have been felt to increase libido. I have recommended some of these ingredients in the past but have not seen this particular combination. This product has fenugreek, tribulus, Mucuna Pruriens and Tongkat Ali. Small studies with many of these ingredients have reported improved desire, arousal and lubrication. I trust the manufacturer and the quality of the ingredients which is huge because many so called sex supplements can be downright scary. This supplement is not recommended for anyone with hormonal cancers like prostate, breast, ovarian, cervical or uterine cancer.
Call our office and grab your bottle today to try this. Ask for Salveo Desire W (for women) or M (for men). I’m looking forward to your feedback.
Other supplements like arginine may help with increased blood flow and therefore sensation. It can cause an increase in herpes outbreaks so don’t try this one if you are dealing with that issue.
DHEA is a hormone that is produced by our stress glands the adrenals. Often by increasing DHEA libido can be boosted. Women usually require fairly low doses compared to men so start with around 5mg and work up. Side effects are typically only when the levels start getting too high. Irritability, acne and rarely hair loss can all occur. DHEA can also be converted into estrogen so if you have a hormonal cancer then stay clear of this one unless being followed by a physician to monitor things.
I addressed the different forms of testosterone up above but I want to mention another hormone you might hear about, oxytocin. This hormone is released when we are nursing our babies to help create a bond with our baby. Studies have been looking at this to see if by taking it we will be more attracted to our mate and therefore want sex more. One study looked at two groups of women who had very low libido. One group was given the oxytocin and the other was not. Both groups were instructed to work with their mates in filling out a questionnaire and journal about their experiences. They discovered that both groups reported an increase boost that were about the same. The conclusion was discussing this topic with your mate communicating how it felt and their desires actually improved the libido more than the drug.
Don’t forget to address the adrenal hormones, too! I can do a whole series of addressing the adrenals so suffice it to say start working on that stress!
5. The female Viagra – Addyi (Flibanseran)
The manufacturer states that Flibanserin corrects an imbalance of dopamine and norepinephrine (both responsible for sexual excitement), while decreasing levels of serotonin (responsible for sexual satiety/inhibition). Flibanserin does not affect blood flow like the class of drugs approved for men with erectile dysfunction. This drug is not without its side-effects though. Dizziness to the point of fainting, nausea and sleepiness have all been reported. It cannot be taken with any alcohol on board as side-effects may become more severe. It currently has a black box warning and is undergoing more studies so keep this in mind before you rush out and ask to try this.