Sexual desire can vary hugely between different women and even for an individual woman.
Sexual desire can also change over time, by partner, by day, and sometimes even by sexual encounter.
There are many different things that impact our sexual desire; insecurity in a relationship, stress at work, having negative thoughts or feelings about our body, lack of sexual experience, diet, lack of exercise, hormonal fluctuations, medication, supplements, young children, lack of sleep, the list is endless…
But one of the biggest, and least talked about things that impact sexual desire is simply not having good sex. By that we mean, not experiencing much pleasure in bed, or not having consistent orgasms… and if we’re not having great sex, it might not be a surprise that we don’t want it all the time.
Should I be concerned about my sex drive?
Not necessarily, because our desire for sex naturally varies. So, it’s important not to catastrophize if you find yourself less interested in sex than you used to, or if it feels like everyone else is wanting more sex than you.
That said, the old adage ‘if you don’t use it, you lose it’ is definitely true when it comes to your desire for sex. So there is a balance here. You want to prioritize sex, but don’t panic if you find your desire fluctuates, especially if you’re in a long-term intimate relationship.
For many people, somewhere between six months and two years into a relationship is when spontaneous desire can start to wane.
For most women after the early phase, they may find they have more ‘responsive desire’. This is where you don’t really desire or want sex until after you’re turned on. Unfortunately, no one is talking about this, so women everywhere think there is something wrong with themselves or their relationships.
Also note, there are some medications and medical conditions that can have a dramatic impact on your sexual desire. If you feel this may relate you to, do check in with your OBGYN or Primary Care Provider.
Oral contraceptives can also dramatically decrease your sexual desire, so it’s always best to talk to your doctor about the best contraceptive options for optimizing your sexual wellness while preventing unwanted pregnancy.
How to increase interest in sex
Firstly, if you want to experience more sexual desire, you need to commit to making your sexual wellness a priority. Just as you’d exercise to get fitter, stronger and protect yourself from illness - you’ve also got to engage sexually (either solo or with a partner) to optimize your sexual wellness.
Secondly, not having sex or engaging with your erotic mind is not going to make you want it more. And just to clarify - masturbation will not leave you wanting less partnered sex.
Sexual desire is actually the opposite to hunger; the less we have of it, the less we want it! Likewise, if we aren’t having good, or great sex - it’s unlikely we’ll want it either...
Finally, research shows that having less sex can lower relationship satisfaction, as well as your quality of life. So knowing how to maintain a healthy level of sexual desire is actually really important!
What’s the solution?
Let's be clear - it’s inevitable and normal for your sex drive to ebb and flow. But, if you’re wondering how to increase sex drive, there are some easy and pleasurable steps that can help drive up your sexual desire (and these can be done with, or without, a partner).
For women, one of the best ways to drive up sexual desire is to increase the frequency and variability of masturbation. The best thing about this is it will help you learn all of the different paths to pleasure, which is particularly helpful for partnered sex.
So, the single biggest thing you can do to drive up sexual desire is to simply have more sex. Whether that be alone (masturbating), or having sex with your partner. And by sex - we don’t just mean intercourse. Most women do not orgasm without direct clitoral stimulation and this can be harder to achieve during intercourse - so play around.
For a personalized course to help you drive up desire, download the Lover app today. We have a host of science-based courses designed to get you right back on track.