Loss of libido (sex drive) is a common problem that can affect men and women of any age. It’s normal for many people, especially women, to lose a bit of interest in sex as they get older, mainly because of diminishing levels of sex hormones or age-related health problems. But an unexpected loss of libido can indicate an underlying personal, medical or lifestyle problem, and can be upsetting to both partners in a relationship.
As is the case with women, lack of desire in men can be of either physical or psychological origin.
- Alcoholism: quite common
- Abuse of drugs such as cocaine
- Obesity: quite common; slimming down will often help
- Anaemia: unusual, unless the man has been bleeding for any reason
- Hyperprolactinaemia: a rare disorder where the pituitary gland produces too much of the hormone prolactin
- Prescribed drugs: particularly Proscar (finasteride), a tablet used for prostate problems
- Low testosterone level: contrary to what many people think, this is rare, except in cases where some injury or illness has affected the testicles
- Any major disease such as diabetes
- Depression: very common
- Stress and overwork
- Hang-ups from childhood
- Latent homosexuality
- Serious relationship problems with your partner
At the moment there are no medicines available that will increase male libido except where there is a testosterone deficiency, in which case it is worth prescribing this hormone. Drugs for ED such as Cialis, Levitra and Viagra have no effect on sexual desire – only on erection.