Does your between-the-sheets action leave something to be desired?
Keeping passion alive can seem an impossible task with screaming kids, deadlines and bills, so we look at five common libido sappers and easy ways for you to conquer them.
1. Haywire hormones
When oestrogen and testosterone dip before menstruation – and slowly decline during the years before menopause – our sex drives take a hit. Testosterone levels can also be negatively affected by the Pill.
Beat it: If you’re on the Pill, ask your GP about switching to one less likely to affect your testosterone levels. Testosterone can be naturally boosted by resistance training too.
Not only are stress hormones adrenalin and cortisol likely to knock other hormones off balance, women who are stressed or distracted will find it harder to become aroused.
Beat it: Get cuddling! Sex therapist Dr Laura Berman found couples who kiss and cuddle a lot are eight times less likely to suffer depression.
3. Alcohol and meds
While you might think a quick tipple will get you in the mood faster, more than three standard units of alcohol will slow your body’s sexual responses, while certain kinds of antidepressants can also zap your sex drive.
Beat it: Stop at two drinks – enough to relax you without dulling your responses. If you take antidepressants, ask your doctor if you can swap to one less likely to kill your libido.
4. Body image
When you don’t feel good about your body it’s hard to feel sexy, and ageing, weight problems, childbirth or health issues can all erode confidence.
Beat it: Try to make peace with your body and stop being so self-critical. Remind yourself that confidence makes great sex. However, eating healthy and getting fitter will give your libido a natural boost anyway.
Laziness, festering resentments and taking your partner for granted can slowly erode your desire.
Beat it: Be proactive – talk about the need for more sex with your partner and discuss ways you can go about it, whether it’s scheduling ‘date nights’ or going to bed earlier. Make your sex life a priority and you’ll reap the benefits.Images: iStock