(BPT) - With the hectic schedules that many women adhere to, it's not surprising that many feel stressed out or overwhelmed. The responsibilities of juggling a career, a family and obligations as a wife and mother can be nerve-wracking, and for many women sex is not on their mind. While this lack of desire may be the result of the day's stresses, in a number of cases it may be the symptom of a bigger issue.
Nearly one in two non-menopausal women ages 30 to 50 say they have experienced low sexual desire at some point in their lives, and 61 percent of these women felt distressed by it, according to a new survey supported by HealthyWomen and Palatin Technologies, which is developing an on-demand treatment for hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD), a common type of female dysfunction otherwise known as low libido.
HSDD is characterized by a lack of sexual thoughts or desires that cannot be explained by another medical condition. Though HSDD has been diagnosed for over 30 years, the vast majority of women surveyed had never heard of the condition. But HSDD is very real and, if not recognized, can ruin relationships.
'Sex is an important part of a romantic relationship, so a lack of intimacy can sometimes create tension within an otherwise healthy partnership,' says Beth Battaglino, R.N., president and CEO of HealthyWomen. 'Women who avoid sex because of low sexual desire may not realize that this could be a sign of a medical issue. Most women don't know what female sexual dysfunction is, or understand that conditions like HSDD are real and can be a serious concern for them as well as their partner.'
Survey results support this idea, as 85 percent of surveyed women said they felt low sexual desire would hurt their relationship with their partner and 66 percent felt it would impair communication. Perhaps more concerning is that nearly half of those who had identified themselves as having HSDD blamed themselves for the condition, and 38 percent said it made them question their worth in their relationship.
'It's important for women living with HSDD or some other form of female sexual dysfunction to not blame themselves, and they need to feel confident to discuss their concerns with their health care provider and their partner,' Battaglino says.
There are currently no approved medications for the treatment of HSDD, yet 92 percent of women surveyed said they would be interested in a treatment for HSDD. The good news is that medications for HSDD are on the horizon. For more information visit www.palatin.com.