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Female Sexual Arousal Disorders - Know More About It!

Written and reviewed by
Dr. Purushottam Sah 93% (13243 ratings)
DGO, MBBS
Sexologist, Hooghly  •  39 years experience
Female Sexual Arousal Disorders - Know More About It!

Disorders of intimate arousal include several aspects of arousal - physical such as genital lubrication, congestion and sensation, subjective such as interest, distress or interpersonal relationship difficulty. Problems of arousal vary among women and can be classified in the following ways:

  1. Primary: The woman has never experienced sufficient arousal, even when she has had sufficient desire and sexual stimulation.
  2. Secondary: The woman has been sufficiently aroused in the past, but currently experiences decreased arousal.
  3. Non-situational: The problem occurs in all sexual situations.
  4. Situational: The problem occurs only in some sexual situations.

Common factors for this problem include decrease of estrogens and androgens; diabetes; thyroid and prolactin abnormality, vaginal and urinary tract infections; surgery, radiation, and medication, smoking, alcoholism; chronic diseases and psychological factors such as depression and anxiety. Other factors are negative sexual attitudes, low self-esteem triggered by body image like small breast size, overweight and sexual and childhood abuse. Lack of communication can also affect sexual arousal like if a woman cannot tell her partner how she prefers to be stimulated.

  1. Partner’s sexual dysfunction is also a major cause, it includes erectile dysfunction or premature ejaculation.
  2. Women with sexual arousal disorder are assessed by medical and detail sexual history and clinical examination, including vaginal and breast examinations. Also talking about distress, attitude to sex, and communication with partner etc.
  3. Testosterone, estrogens, Prolactin, TSH, Sugar, Hb, TC, DC any other test depending on physical examination.
  4. Treatment depends on the cause of the disorder, related to physical, psychological, and interpersonal factors. If abnormalities are found in blood tests they are treated by medicines.
  5. Estrogen therapy in the form of local creams or oral tablets or skin patch is used to improve vaginal lubrication and decrease vaginal dryness. Non medicated lubricants can also be used.
  6. Drugs like Sildenafil, Tadalafil etc increase genital blood flow. DHEA is claimed to improve sexual interest and genital sensation.

Hyperactive arousal Disorders

Some women experience persistent genital arousal called restless genital syndrome. There is increased genital blood flow in non-sexual situations causing distress. It may be related to depression and anxiety there may be physical causes like vascular, neurologic, pharmacologic, and hormonal. Its treatment involves relaxation exercises, topical anesthetics, avoiding use of medications or herbal and nutritional products. Medical treatment includes antidepressants. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a Sexologist.

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