If you’re a woman who is distressed and unhappy because you’ve gone a long time without experiencing sexual interest, either in the form of fantasies or wanting actual physical contact, you could be suffering from hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD).

Hypoactive sexual desire disorder is a common type of female sexual dysfunction. However, a woman’s sexual desire can be influenced by many factors, including hormone changes, physical ailments, family and work stressors, and intimate partner issues.

When exploring whether or not you might have HSDD, it’s important to ask and answer two questions:

  • Do you wish you were more sexually interested and responsive than you are?

  • Is your lack of sexual desire chronic? In other words, is your low libido prevalent no matter how physically well you feel or how stress free your current life situation?

If you answered yes to one or both of these questions, it might be time to make an appointment with your primary care physician or gynecologist.

Talking about sex can be a bit daunting, if not downright embarrassing. To help you organize your thoughts before your doctor visit, write down any past history, current situations, or physical problems you think might have a bearing on your level of desire.

Your doctor will need to pinpoint all the factors contributing to your low sexual desire so she can prescribe the most effect treatment. To do this, she’ll need to ask you a lot of direct questions about not only your medical history, but your relationships and sex life. These inquiries could involve questions about your

  • Past pregnancies, gynecological surgeries, and sexually transmitted diseases, as well as your menopause status or current contraceptive practices

  • Past sexual experiences, including their physical and emotional impact on your well being

  • Emotional relationship with your partner, including level of trust and mutual respect

  • Physical relationship with your partner, including any life situations that hamper intimacy, such as a lack of privacy, poor sexual communication, and disagreements about sexual activities

  • Overall experience during and after sex, including physical symptoms such as pain and vaginal dryness, as well as strong emotional reactions such as fear or anxiety

  • Sexual responsiveness, including your ability to become aroused and have an orgasm