5 Sex Drive Killers

Let me get right to the point. “What’s stress got to do with sex”? Everything!! What? “Everything”! Absolutely!!! Stress is pretty high up there as on one of the top reasons for why couples are not having sex! So I thought it would be important to identify some stressors in our lives that might be getting in the way of, or actually completely killing, our sex drive.

Some people are capable of doing many things well while under stress; but being in the mood for sex and/or feeling sexy usually isn’t one of them.

So enough jabbering here and let’s get on with identifying 5 common stressors that decrease or eliminate one’s sex drive. (And remember, some of these sex drive killers have nothing to do with how you feel about your partner – what a sense of relief!).

Stressor #1: Prescription Medication – Many prescription drugs have the side effect of decreasing one’s sex drive,especially the commonly prescribed anti-depressant medication Prozac. Other classifications of drugs that have loss of libido as a side-effect include: chemotherapy, antihistamines, blood pressure medication (Lipitor) some oral contraceptives and ant-HIV medications.

Solution: Talk to your prescribing physician and ask them if they can change the medication you are on for one that offers the same benefits – minus the loss of libido side effect.

Stressor #2: Parenting – the kids are exhausting you! If you have a new baby in the home, that sweet little bundle of joy requires what feels like 24/7 attention. Or maybe you have toddlers running around who possessed an inordinate amount of energy – or school-aged children that need to be chauffeured around – everyone – causing you to run out of steam by the end of the day!

Solution: Get a babysitter or family member and get out of the house for a day, an overnight and/or long weekend. Do it – even though you might be feeling too exhausted to arrange this – consider it to be like exercise. You don’t usually feel like doing it, but once you do, you are so glad you did.

Stressor #3: Poor Body Image – Most of us don’t look like we did when we were 21 years old anymore – but we lament this fact and let it get in the way of how we feel about not only our bodies but our selves as well. In other words, poor body image promotes poor self-esteem. Poor self-esteem makes us feel unlovable – and feeling unlovable lowers our sex drive.

Solution: Your partner fell in love with you – your heart and soul. A few pounds gained throughout the years do not diminish the value of who you are in the heart of your lover. (Chances are they don’t look 21 anymore either). If you have gained a few pounds over the years, (and who hasn’t?) you might consider adding exercise to your daily routine – even if it takes the form of simply walking the stairs in your office instead of riding the elevator. Do whatever you need to do so you can begin to feel better about your body image. And whatever you do – please remember – the images of the models on the cover of all those magazines are air-brushed and touched up until the cows come home. Please don’t think “real” women look like that. I sure don’t know any that do!!

Stressor #4: Alcohol – Yes, alcohol has a reputation for reducing one’s inhibitions when it comes to sex, but alcohol is also a common cause for numbing your sex drive. (FYI – your partner might not be in the mood for getting it on with someone who is intoxicated).

Solution: Keep the alcohol to what is considered to be a reasonable amount for you. A slobbering drunk isn’t sexy any where –including the bedroom. Hey, I’m not saying you can’t have a drink or two – just don’t imbibe to the extreme.

Stressor # 5: Lack of sleep – whether this results from worry, insomnia, or sleep apnea, sleep deprivation creates body fatigue. And fatigue zaps the energy you need for sex – interfering with your sex drive.

Solution: Make it your priority to get enough sleep. If you have a medical condition that you think might be interfering with your sleep, see a physician. If you are sleep deprived because you love to watch late night TV- tivo your shows and watch them another time.

So as you can see, a low sex drive might be the result of stressors outside your romantic relationship. Please make any changes that are necessary in your life style to insure you are doing everything within your means to increase your sex drive so you can …

Rekindle Romance and Happiness in Your Relationship,

Dr. Patty Ann

33 thoughts on “5 Sex Drive Killers

  1. Katherine C. H. E. says:

    I just love you, Dr. Patty Ann! I love your straight talk and how you break things down into bite-sized chunks, taking what could be a big, hairy issue and making it something that is fixable. Keep on shining!!! XO, Katherine ♥

  2. Kiyla Fenell says:

    Dr. Patty Ann,
    I am sooo surprised when I talk to my friends…and they are having sex only every other month or a couple of times a year! How sad! I will have to forward this article to them. We are constantly surrounded by opportunities to let stress get the best of us…these are great tips to overcome!

  3. Dr. Robert Fenell says:

    As a chiropractor I have witnessed 1:1 how stress affects the body. Your suggestions are wise and should be considered by anyone involved in a deep loving relationship. Thank you for your great advice.
    Dr. Robert Fenell

  4. Dr. Patty Ann says:

    Hi Doc,

    Thanks for your comment. You are so right, your profession knows first-hand the impact stress has on our bodies and our lives – perhaps more so than any other health specialty!

    Dr. Patty Ann

  5. Anita G. Wheeler says:

    Dr. Patty Ann,

    Thank you for the straightforward article AND the solutions.
    I love the way you tackle the subject matter and break it down so that anyone can benefit.

    You are the BEST… can’t wait to hear you on your radio program. I know it is coming!


  6. Jenny Fenig says:

    Fantastic tips and insight, Dr. Patty Ann! I remember taking a marriage success workshop before I got married where we were told: “If you only have sex when you’re not tired or when you’re in the mood, you’ll never have sex.” Your tips pack a similar punch: clear, powerful and oh so true.


    • Dr. Patty Ann says:

      Hi Jenny,

      Thnaks for the comment. I know this might sound a little “unusual’ but sex can be like exercise – sometimes you aren’t really “in the mood” but once you get started – you’re really glad you did it!

      Dr. Patty Ann

  7. Darlyn says:

    I love your blog – it’s truly wonderful. This article is right on the money. It’s amazing how many people suffer with this issue, and don’t relate it back to what’s going on in other areas of their lives!
    I do some writing myself on relationships; if you get the chance to visit me back, I’d love your feedback. Perhaps I have some articles that can help your readers, too.

    fix marriage, relationship article, marriage builders

    • Dr. Patty Ann says:

      Hi Darlyn,
      Thanks so much for your comments! I did check out your articles and I tried to comment but it wouldnt go through, Why dont you contact me on twitter?
      twitter@drpattyann.com I would love to support anyone trying to help people grow in their relationships!

      Dr. Patty Ann

  8. Trudy Scott, Food-Mood Expert says:

    Great post and so true how bad stress is for sex drive (and mood and overall health too!). I love your step by step approach with solutions. I find getting off medications (so getting healthy and using food and nutrients) and getting enough sleep to be huge for most of my clients!

    • Dr. Patty Ann says:

      Hi Trudy,
      Thanks for your comments. Yes, it is true – we are what we eat. A dear friend of mine – who is a naturopathic physician once told me; “the body has no fences”. So true!

      Dr, Patty Ann

  9. Lisa Manyon says:

    Dr. Patty Ann,

    I am going to share this with several of my friends who are married and have mentioned they’d like to have more sex with their spouse.

    It’s amazing how many things can be contributing to lack of sex and it’s so important to point out that lack of sex drive may not have anything at all to do with how you feel about your partner.

    I have a feeling my friends will be subscribing to your blog right away. What an excellent resource.

    Write on!~


    • Dr,Patty Ann says:

      Dear Lisa,

      Thank you so much for your wonderful comment! Sex is such an important part of any relationship and it makes me so sad to think so many people are missing out – and it is totally unnecessary!

      Dr. Patty Ann

  10. Goals Coaching with Lynn Moore says:

    So clear, so right and so easy to understand and implement. Stress is a killer of so many things including the adrenal glands which most people don’t understand produce cortisol which in turn controls the entire hormonal system. Along with your excellent advice on prescription medication, people might like to check out adrenal fatigue which is entirely due to over stress.

    • Dr. Patty Ann says:

      Hi Lynn,

      Thank you so much for your comments! And ou are definitely correct about how the adrenal gland influences the production of cortisol – and its regulation of our hormonal system – which is why, when under stress, our body breaks down and we become ill (better stop now before I go on a “geek” binge -lol).
      Thanks for adding that information!

      Dr. Patty Ann

  11. Laura Hollick says:

    It just shows how everything effects everything.
    If our sex drive is off, it is probably a clue that something else is off.
    This is a great argument for the spa!

  12. Heidi Alexandra Pollard says:

    When I read your posts in their practical, straight down the line manner I often think how much simpler and more authentic the world would be if everyone was as honest and straight up as you.
    Great advice – #5 is one I struggle with the most!
    XX H

    • Dr. Patty Ann says:

      Hi Heidi,

      Thank you for your comment. I often say sleep deprivation is way underrated – so get some sleep! Everything seems clearer – including your relationship issues – after a good night’s sleep!

      Dr. Patty Ann

    • Dr. Patty Ann says:

      Hi Heidi,

      Thank you for your comment! Sleep deprivation is underrated – so try to get some sleep! A good night’s sleep puts many issues – especially relationship issues into perspective!

      Dr. Patty Ann

  13. Rachel says:

    Patty Ann I love this article!! #3 has been my big problem lately but can relate to all of these at one time or another. After I had my daughter my body changed drastically….I was one of those unlucky one–stretch marks etc. I still struggle with it and your post really helped me put it into perspective. As much as my husband tells me I’m more beautiful than ever it’s hard when you see the celebrity moms after giving birth 5 months ago (or whatever) looking so fit and “perfect”. Thanks for your advice – I’m going to climb those stairs :-).

    • Dr. Patty Ann says:

      Hi Rachel,

      Thank you for your incredibly honest comment! Give yourself a break! Look at the beautiful baby you brought into this world and remember – you are the only one worrying about your stretch marks. Your husband has already told you he thnks you are even more beautiful now than ever before! (See – he fell in love with your heart and soul). Celebrate who you are and where you are at this moment in your life. The baby weight will come off – focus on healthy living and taking care of yourself! Geting down on yourself never helped anyone feel better about anything!

      Dr. Patty Ann

  14. Linda P. Jones says:

    Patty Ann,
    You are so right on, stress is a sex killer! My girlfriend gets so stressed about cleaning up after the kids that she says her husband vacuuming helps get her in the mood! Who would think?

  15. Dr. Patty Ann says:

    Hi LInda,

    Thank you for your comment. Yeah, so many women get hung up on cleaning up after the kids. My feeling is – you clean up and 5 minutes later (if the kids are home) it looks like you never touched the room. Wait until they go to bed at night – or until they go to college – that’s what I did -LOL!

    Dr. Patty Ann

  16. Phil Dyer says:

    Dr. Patty Ann –

    Thanks for the straightforward approach and great tips…especially around sleep and kids…so true! I love the idea of waiting until the kids go to college to worry about clean rooms…might work with my son!


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