A woman’s sexual health is an integral and important part of her overall health and emotional well-being. Medical problems, gynecologic conditions, medications, stress, relationship issues, and factors related to aging may all contribute to female sexual dysfunction. Women can experience problems with sexual function at any age or stage in their lives.
Disturbances in sexual functioning can be physically and emotionally harmful and can result in significant distress, but the good news is that there are many treatment options and these issues can be resolved.
What is female sexual dysfunction?
Female sexual dysfunction is an umbrella term that refers to problems with sexual desire, arousal, orgasm, pain, and overall sexual pleasure. Often, physical, psychological, and social components factor into disturbances in sexual response and functioning. When problems become chronic and interfere with the quality of life and relationships, it’s worth consulting an experienced sexual health specialist for proper diagnosis and treatment.
What causes sexual dysfunction in women?
Many variables can contribute to female sexual dysfunction, which affects nearly half of all women at one point or another. In some cases, it is a complex interplay between the following causes:
- Hormonal changes – lower levels of estrogen postpartum and after menopause can impact libido, cause dryness, and make intercourse more painful. Decreases in testosterone levels in postmenopausal women can also impact libido.
- Emotional issues – high-stress levels, anxiety, and untreated depression can make it more challenging to enjoy sexual experiences.
- Gynecologic conditions – urinary or bladder infections, vulvovaginal dryness/atrophy, cysts, abnormal growths or cancer.
- Prescription medications – certain types of antidepressant medications, allergy medications, oral contraceptive pills, and other drugs can diminish sex drive
- Marital or relationship issues
- Medical conditions– related to cancer, diabetes, or immunologic, rheumatologic and cardiovascular diseases.
Common Female Sexual Problems
The Center for Women’s Sexual Health & Medicine in Miami provides highly specialized care for common female sexual problems, such as:
- Low sex drive in women (low libido)
- Arousal disorder
- Herpetic neuralgia
- Orgasm disorders
- Pain during sex (dyspareunia)
- Pain with orgasm
- Clitoral pain
- Persistent genital arousal
- Pelvic Floor Muscle Dysfunction
- Pudendal neuralgia (pain or numbness around genitals)
- Enlarged labia minora
- Sex after cancer
- Sex after hysterectomy
- Vaginal dryness/atrophy
How is women’s sexual dysfunction diagnosed?
A comprehensive evaluation by a sexual health doctor is the first step toward getting an accurate diagnosis. By gleaning a better understanding of your medical history, sexual history, and ongoing concerns, we can develop an individualized treatment plan. Your evaluation will may include a complete sexual history, gynecologic examination, blood work, a pelvic ultrasound, and completing the Female Sexual Function Index (FSFI) Questionnaire.
Treatment Options from a Sexual Health Doctor
Our providers are experts in female sexual problems and have helped thousands of women on their path toward better sexual health. A comprehensive treatment strategy may include one or a combination of the following therapies:
- Addyi – FDA-approved prescription medication to treat low libido in women, also known as Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder (HSDD). Flibanserin is currently only approved for premenopausal women.
- Arousal Oils and Gels – topical formulations that help stimulate female genital arousal, boost blood flow, and increase sexual pleasure. Ingredients range from CBD, L-arginine, botanical extracts to Sildenafil.
- Hormone Therapy – Bioidentical hormone therapies either oral or transdermal to restore healthy balances of estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. May be systemic or local treatments.
- Labiaplasty – an outpatient procedure to reduce large or stretched labia minora, which can cause painful sex while preserving nerve sensitivity.
- MonaLisa Vaginal Laser Therapy – minimally invasive laser vaginal restoration that stimulates collagen production and restores mucous membrane balance and reduces vaginal dryness and atrophy.
- Nutritional Supplements – vitamins, minerals, and natural supplements designed to address different concerns of female sexual dysfunction.
- Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy – addresses weakness, pain, and dysfunction in the pelvic floor muscles with strengthening exercises and biofeedback. May help relieve dyspareunia.
- Testosterone Therapy – an effective hormone therapy for post-menopausal women experiencing low sex drive and arousal problems.
- Vyleesi – an injectable prescription medicine used to treat low libido in women who have not gone through menopause.
- Referral to a Sex Therapist
Personalized care for female sexual problems in Miami
The Center for Women’s Sexual Health & Medicine offers a multidisciplinary team approach focusing on comprehensive, patient-centric care. We use a Biopsychosocial model in diagnosing and treating patients. Our dedicated sexual health doctors offer progressive therapies for women of all ages experiencing difficulties with sexual health and function.
To learn more about our sexual health services for women in Miami Beach, please contact us to schedule an appointment with a sexual health specialist.