Overview Inhibited Desire
Inhibited (low) desire may be described as a lack (or loss) of spontaneous sexual thoughts and fantasies, and/or the wish to initiate or respond to sexual activity. Research suggests that approximately 7% of men in the UK suffer from low desire at any given time; in addition, a small minority of men have a strong aversion to sexual activity. Of course, this is only a problem if it causes distress to the affected man and/or conflict in his relationship.
Common causes of inhibited desire in a man include:
Health problems such as kidney or liver disease, raised prolactin levels, fatigue, insufficient levels of testosterone, or the after-effects of another illness e.g. a severe bout of flu. Side effects of medications such as antidepressant, antipsychotic, antihypertensive and anti-epileptic drugs, or overuse of recreational drugs or alcohol.
Psychological problems such as depression, anxiety, fear of failure, a history of sexual abuse, post-traumatic stress, guilt or shame around sex, or uncertainty about his sexual identity. Relationship problems such as conflict, power issues, emotional distance, ambivalence about his relationship, sexual boredom, or lack of physical attraction to his partner. Being overweight can also affect desire levels, both for physical and psychological reasons.