Has Your Libido Dropped? It Could Be Perimenopause.

Okay girls, have you noticed that watching a steamy love scene featuring your favorite movie hunk no longer gets your motor running?

Does the idea of putting on a sexy negligee, lighting some candles and leaving a trail of rose petals to the boudoir leaving you rolling in laughter?

When you call your babysitter, is it so you can get together with the girls while he goes fishing?

How long has it been since you shaved your legs, bought sexy, new underwear or dabbed perfume behind your knees?

Maybe your sex drive has just waned or – GULP – has it totally disappeared?

It could be Perimenopause.

Perimenopause is a span of time during which a woman’s body ultimately ceases to be fertile. Inward changes, like reduced estrogen and progesterone levels, can begin to naturally occur as early as a woman’s mid-thirties.

Outward physical changes like weight gain, thinning hair and dry skin come later and are often accompanied by emotional changes like mood swings, irritability and depression. This passage can take women six years or more to complete.

Ultimately, we enter menopause. A simple way that a woman can tell if she is “in” menopause is once she has gone for twelve consecutive months without having a period.

Not every woman has reduced libido or loses her libido entirely during perimenopause. Sometimes it simply goes on temporary hiatus. But when it does disappear completely, it can be an upsetting occurrence for you and for your partner.

At first, you may not even realize that it could be age-related! Since the onset of perimenopause can be quite subtle and stretches over years, many women assume the reasons for a lowered interest in sex have to do with family and work pressures. Certainly, these reasons account for many women’s loss of libido.

But the most common perimenopause related causes for lowered sex drive in women are:

1. Hormonal Imbalance – the natural reduction of progesterone during perimenopause can reduce desire for sex.

2. Fatigue – Not just your ordinary, “I’m too tired” kind of fatigue. Crushing fatigue that makes you crave a nap after you just napped!

3. Vaginal Dryness – Lowered estrogen production thins the vaginal wall, causing pain, sometimes extreme, during intercourse.

4. Adrenal Exhaustion – Also known as hypoadrenia, is a dysfunction of the adrenal glands ultimately resulting in diminished production of adrenal hormones which adversely affects your physiology in many ways, including decreased sex drive.

What can you do about these and other causes of reduced libido?

First and foremost, don’t try to go it alone! Acknowledge what you are feeling. Talk with your spouse or partner so they understand, can be more sympathetic and not feel that it is something they are, or are not, doing that is causing you to turn away from, or not initiate, sex.

And second, but perhaps most important, seek professional help. See your doctor. Seek out advice from a health care practitioner. Remember that though this is a common, albeit unsettling concern for women, it might also indicate some other health problem(s). Always discuss this and any concerns you have with a professional before chalking symptoms up to perimenopause.

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