Meno Health. Clinical Evidence.

TWC #049: Loss of libido during the menopause

Loss of libido during the menopause

Dear MHI reader

Loss of libido and pain during sexual intercourse are common menopausal symptoms. We know from studies that

  • every 3rd woman has a low sexual desire;
  • up to 45% of postmenopausal women experience pain during sex.

The loss of libido during the menopause can therefore be a stressful experience. It is important to understand why this happens and what you can do about it.

Why do I suddenly have less desire for sex?

During the menopause, hormone production in your body decreases dramatically, especially the production of oestrogen and testosterone. These hormones play an important role in regulating your sexual desire and your response to sexual stimuli. An imbalance of these hormones can make you feel less like having sex and make it harder to get aroused.

But it’s not just hormonal changes that affect libido during the menopause. Other factors such as stress, fatigue, physical changes and psychological stress can also play a role. It is important to recognize and address these factors in order to improve libido.

What can I do about it?


You can feel just as sexy after the menopause as you did in the decades before. You can still have great sex. If your sex drive starts to wane, think of it as a threshold, not a stop sign. You can do something about it:

  1. Communication:

Talk openly with your partner about your feelings and needs. Communication is the key to a healthy and satisfying sexuality, and your partner will be better able to support you if they know your concerns and needs.

  • Self-care

Take time for yourself and do things that give you pleasure. Self-care and self-love are important aspects of sexuality and can help to increase your libido.

  • Stress management

Try to reduce stress and integrate relaxation techniques such as meditation, yoga or deep breathing into your everyday life. Stress can affect your libido, so it’s important to find ways to deal with it.

  • Healthy lifestyle

A healthy diet and regular exercise can help to balance your hormones and increase your libido. Make sure you get enough sleep and reduce your alcohol and nicotine consumption.

  • Medical assistance

If the loss of libido persists and affects your quality of life, don’t hesitate to seek professional help. Talking to your doctor can help to find out the causes and find suitable treatment options.

Yes, it would be nice if you could pop a Viagra like men to boost your sex drive. But male desire depends on blood flow. For women, it’s more complex. So consider the following:

  1. Moisturize

Thinning vaginal tissue causes painful sex and can lead to urinary tract infections. Both can cause you to avoid sex.

  • Try to change your medication

Some medications for high blood pressure and depression can dampen your libido. Ask your doctor if you can switch to another medication with fewer side effects.

  • Try hormones

Your doctor can prescribe oestrogen (in the form of a cream, ring or tablet) that you can insert into your vagina. This thickens the tissue and makes intercourse more comfortable.

But maybe you «just» need a rethink. Changing your attitude towards sex can make a big difference:

  1. Awaken the number one sexual organ, your brain

New things excite us. Try changing places, positions, toys and roles. If you have more sex, you want more sex.

  • Take time for each other

You may have an instinct to avoid romance when you’re not in the mood. But dates and little outings can tell you: «This is important to me» and help you feel like it again.

  • Bring back the foreplay

The older you get, the longer it takes your clitoris to respond. Take time to cuddle, kiss and caress. Just have fun without the climax being the goal.

  • Put your pleasure first

If you focus on yourself during sex, you can set the right pace for yourself. A study has shown that older women, who are least likely to take the lead during sex, have the unhappiest partners.

It’s important to understand that loss of libido during the menopause is normal and can affect many women. Be patient with yourself and give yourself time to find out what works best for you. With the right strategies and a positive attitude, you can learn to deal with the loss of libido and enjoy your sexuality even during the menopause.

We hope this information will help you to better understand the menopause and take practical steps to deal with it. If you need personal advice or support on your journey through the menopause, contact The Women Circle here.

In our next edition, again on Saturday at 9am, we will cover more aspects of the menopause and women’s health. Stay informed and feel good in this special phase of your life.

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