There’s a common assumption that men are always up for sex whatever the time or day. But the reality is that a lack of sex drive in men is common. Libidos are not fixed. Medical and psychological factors can impact on our libidos, as can life events. In the *Sex Census 2012 (a joint report from Relate and Ann Summers) 24% of men said they were often too tired for sex, while financial worries, children and work were also high on the list of passion-wreckers.
Fortunately, for many a lack of libido is only temporary. Some will get over it by themselves, others may require medical or psychosexual advice. There aren’t any quick fixes, but a high proportion of men do eventually achieve a return to normal libido.
Lack of sexual desire
What causes low male libido?
There are many factors that can cause a loss of interest in sex. These can be physiological, hormonal and psychological. Ageing, depression, medication, tiredness, drinking too much, grief, sexual boredom, pressure from work, are just some.
How is low male libido treated?
How the condition is treated will depend very much on the cause. Relationship problems are one of the most common causes of loss of libido. In such cases, psychosexual counselling may be recommended (either arranged privately, through an organisation such as Relate, or via your GP). The counsellor will allow you and your partner to discuss any sexual or emotional issues that may be contributing to the problem.
If the dip in sex drive is due to depression a GP may recommend antidepressants or psychological therapy. It’s worth noting that sometimes a low libido is a side effect of some anti-depressants. Other drugs can also affect libido such as blood pressure tablets. If you think there’s an issue talk to your GP about switching meds.
Occasionally a low libido is caused by an underactive thyroid - if this is diagnosed the condition can easily be treated by taking hormone replacement tablets.
Testosterone replacement therapy is sometimes offered as a treatment for low libido. Treatments come in the form of pills, skin patches, gels, mouth patches or injections and implants. For ageing men testosterone replacement therapy can improve energy levels and sex drive. However, the long-term benefits are not known. Men will only be offered this if a blood test confirms that testosterone levels are low.
Alternative Remedies & Self-help:
The key to increasing your sex drive and libido is to increase testosterone levels that get depleted with age. This may be possible through natural means including:
- A diet rich in proteins and limited in carbohydrates and moderate in essential fats.
- A decent workout - 45-60 minutes in a single routine. A lack of physical exercise can lower testosterone levels.
- Relaxation and good sleep - both are key to elevating sex drive.