Benefits and Limitations of Medications for Treatment of Sexual Dysfunctions

When you’re dealing with a sexual dysfunction, the thing that you want to change is physical in nature. Whether you want to experience orgasms, increase your sexual desire, have more reliable erections, or want to have painless sex, all of these problems have a physical issue associated with them. Thus, it’s natural to want to consider medical treatment to treat these problems. There is a whole list of supplements and medications that can be used to treat these issues. But how effective are they? And when do you need to see a sex therapist who has a background in mental health?

Symptoms and Root Causes

Understanding Root Causes of Sexual Dysfunctions, Psychological vs Medical Treatments for Sexual Issues

The treatment of sexual problems is deeply rooted in medicine. Early founders of sex therapy were medical doctors and there are many medical doctors who continue to offer sex therapy today. Similar to other medical issues, the focus is often heavily oriented towards treating symptoms. Depending on the sexual issue, there are some effective medications.

PDE5 Inhibitors Effectiveness

How Effective are Medications in Treating Erectile Dysfunction

For example, PDE5 inhibitors are quite effective and treating the symptoms of erectile dysfunction . In fact, those are usually the most effective treatments for any sexual dysfunction. It’s important to note that as effective as these medications are, they aren’t full proof.

SSRIs for the Treatment of Premature Ejaculation

There are few medications that have proven successful in treating premature or early ejaculation (PE). Some have tried SSRI’s which are actually used to treat depression and anxiety with some success. However, results in research have been mixed when using these to treat PE.

Hormone Therapy for Low Desire, Controversies in Hormone Therapy for Sexual Desire

For low sexual desire, some will use hormone therapies. However this is controversial and needs to have a skilled doctor in place to be effective. Some implicate hormones and actually can make hormonal issues worse if they aren’t careful. Others always assume that testosterone is the primary culprit and focus too heavily on it, ignoring other potential medical causes.

For low sexual desire in women, there is actually a medication on the market that is controversial primarily because of how mixed its results have been. Many claimed it wasn’t shown to be effective enough to be a medication to even offer.

Medications and therapies for vaginismus can be quite effective. However, this is often a diagnosis that is mixed up with other conditions such as PID, infections, and vulvodynia. If the right condition is identified, then effective treatment can be offered.

Finding the Root Cause of Your Sexual Dysfunction

Under every sexual health issue is a root cause. Sometimes the causes are physiological in nature. However, trauma, relationship issues, beliefs about yourself, sex education history, and emotional issues all contribute to sexual concerns. Learning about your root cause is vital to identifying the best course of treatment for your problem.

Building a Strong Treatment Plan with a Strong Team

You’ll want to match up your treatment with a team who is going to treat your underlying conditions. Look for physicians who do in-depth to rule out issues such as infections, hormonal imbalances, heart issues, and medication contraindications.

It can be helpful to work with a dietitian. Blood sugar and insulin can impact sexual functioning.

The Role of Sex Therapists on Your Sex Therapy Team

Most sex therapists have a background in mental health therapy. However, these therapists come into the treatment team at different points in a client’s journey. Sometimes, they’re there right at the beginning. Other times, they’re referred to later on after several things have been explored. Sex therapists will discuss your medical journey, along with taking a sexual history from you to determine with you’ve ruled out medical issues. Then, they’ll refer you to the appropriate place.

Sex therapists will then do work to help you uncover your root causes, learn more, or heal what needs to be healed.

Medications can be beneficial, but they usually need to be part of a bigger and broader treatment plan. Talk with your medical or mental health provider about your options if you’re dealing with these sexual issues.

As a client looking for help for sexual dysfunctions, you have to do a lot of your own research. If you’re wanting to find sex therapists or just look at information about sexual health, two good resources are SSTAR and AASECT . These websites host researchers and therapists who specialize in treating these types of conditions.

If you’re in the Texas or California and looking for a sex therapist , please feel free to contact us .

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