BY Billie-Jean Bullard

Let me start with this: sex is a natural part of life. It’s normal to want to have sex, and it’s normal to not want to have sex. However, sometimes what you think may be a normal feeling could be something else that your body is trying to tell you. Here are 8 things that could be affecting your libido.

You probably don’t want to have sex if

  1. You’re stressed/anxious/depressed - Anything that affects your mental health or spikes your cortisol levels seem to be a total buzzkill. High cortisol levels can also suppress testosterone levels, making the thought of sex all the less appealing. 
  2. Sex just doesn’t do it for you - You’re more likely to have a lower sex drive if you don’t actually enjoy having sex (big surprise there). Rather than giving up altogether, find out what it is about sex you’re not enjoying. If you’re having a hard time having an orgasm, there’s a really great website here that can teach you and/or your partner what works for you. Don’t want to pay the fee? Just schedule some alone time and get to know your body. 
  3. You’re drinking alcohol & do drugs on the reg - not only do they decrease your sex drive, but they also dehydrate your body (making things more dry then they should be - which is never the goal). According to The Lancet, the suggested alcohol consumption should be limited to below 100g per week, which is just under 10 Australian drinks. 
  4. You’ve just changed your medications - If you’re on any prescription medication, make sure you discuss their side effects with your doctor before taking them. Some medications don’t only just decrease your libido, but they can make the experience of sex physically hurt more, can decrease the intensity of an orgasm and make orgasms harder to achieve.  

You’ll probably want to have sex if

  1. You’re still in the “honeymoon” phase - There’s an overused saying “like bunnies”, and as much as we hate saying/hearing it, it’s true. When you have a new partner everything is fun and exciting, you’re super physically attracted to this person which could make you want to share certain experiences with them. All it takes is having lots of sex to want more of it, makes sense right?
  2. It’s that time of the month, i.e you have your period. - Alisa Vitti (functional nutritionist & MyFLO founder) explains that "in the menstrual phase, you're interested in sex because the uterus is expanding with blood and pressing upon never endings in the pelvic basin”. Basically your pelvis is tricking your body into thinking it’s being stimulated, when it’s not. Having sex on your period is cool though because having an orgasm can relieve cramps, back pain and make you forget about all your worries for a little while. 
  3. You just got back from a run - When you exercise your body releases endorphins (which are great), that not only help to relive stress, but also positively impacts your mental health. Exercise also heightens your libido as it increases blood flow to your brain and genital area, telling your body you are ready to go. 
  4. You’re on a hormonal birth control method - Honestly, this one can go either way. There’s evidence that birth control can increase or decrease your libido, or to make things even more confusing - not affect your libido at all. The most common hormonal methods being the pill, mini pill, implanon, Mirena (IUD), contraceptive injections, and the nuva ring just to name a few. But before you put anything inside your body (no pun intended), make sure you talk options and side effects over with your doctor to find out which method is best for you. For a more detailed article on how birth control affects your libido, click here.