Low Libido: Symptoms & Signs

Medically Reviewed on 9/10/2019

A decrease in sex drive can develop both due to medical conditions as well as to psychological or emotional issues. Inhibited sexual desire is a type of sexual dysfunction that affects both men and women. A reduction in sexual desire has been associated with low testosterone levels in men. Likewise, women in the menopausal transition sometimes report a decrease in sex drive. Multiple types of chronic illnesses and chronic pain can also lead to a decrease in sex drive, likely through a combination of physical effects of the disease as well as the psychological stress associated with a chronic illness. Painful intercourse (dyspareunia) can lead to loss of libido in women. Psychological factors that may be associated with low libido include poor body image, anxiety, low self-esteem, stress, poor communication, lack of or breach of trust, and unresolved conflicts. Certain medications, such as some antidepressants, can also cause a reduction in sex drive.

Related Symptoms & Signs

Other causes of low libido

  • Aging
  • Chronic Illness, Such as Cancer
  • Dyspareunia
  • Medications
  • Relationship or Social Difficulties

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DeNoon, Daniel J. "When a Man's Sex Drive Is Too Low." WebMD.com. May 21, 2009. <https://www.webmd.com/sex-relationships/features/when-a-mans-sex-drive-is-too-low>.

Seliger, Susan. "Loss of Libido in Men." WebMD.com. 2007. <https://www.webmd.com/sex-relationships/features/loss-of-libido-in-men>.