I always encourage wives not to apportion blame to their husband’s methods or manner of lovemaking. Maybe your body is trying to tell you something. The bitter truth is that sex and health do reflect on each other, but because open discussion about sex is still viewed as a taboo, married lovers often separate the two in their lives.
However, various physical problems can sneak into a woman’s nuptial bed and affect the quality of her sexual relationship. Although it takes two to tango, a wife’s sexual clues can also reveal what her sex life says about her husband’s health.
When a wife avoids sex because it is painful, this might be as a result of vulvodynia (a painful vaginal syndrome). In 2010, a survey was conducted on the sex lives of American housewives and it was discovered that 30 per cent of such women reported mild to moderate pain during sex in spite of prolonged foreplay.
Fleeting causes of painful sex can include insufficient foreplay and pressure of the male genital on the cervix. However, for many wives, the pain is more generalised, often described as burning, stinging, or knife-like, and showing up even when they are not having sex.
Almost one in five women experiences vulvodynia at some point, according to the research. The cause of vulvodynia is unknown, but a thorough medical workup can rule out other possible causes. A regular use of unadulterated natural herbal lubricants can be of immense help.
As a wife, you take forever to reach orgasm, if at all. It might be as a result of diabetes; many things can contribute to difficulty achieving orgasm, including pain or side effects of medication. However, one fast-growing factor is complications from diabetes.
In a 2010 study of 2,000 adults between the ages of 57 and 85, researchers found that both women and men with diabetes reported difficulty in attaining orgasm, though male erectile dysfunction got most of the attention.
Diabetes can damage nerves and small blood vessels, including autonomic nerves, the kind the brain uses to send unconscious signals for involuntary responses, such as sexual stimulation.
The reduced blood flow caused by damage to blood vessels contributes to the problem. If you have never been diagnosed with diabetes, but it seems as if you are having other possible signs of diabetes, have a fasting blood sugar level test done and other medical check-up and mention all worrisome symptoms. If you are a known diabetic, do not be shy about mentioning this sexual effect to your doctor or sex therapist. Unlike before, we now have certified sex therapists in Nigeria.
Wives, if you do not lubricate much when aroused, though you are not close to pre-menopausal or in menopausal stage. It might be the sign of an unhealthy heart. Most married women have heard that vaginal dryness is a common side effect of the shifting hormones at pre-menopause and after menopause. It may shock you to know that if you are under 45 years and you are affected by dryness, one possible causes maybe the condition of your heart.
Lubrication comes from hormones and fluid in the bloodstream. If there is impaired blood flow for any reason, it could reflect early signs of a cardiovascular issue. Men experience this surprising sign of an unhealthy heart more noticeably in the form of erectile dysfunction.
Interestingly, long time female smokers can also develop vaginal dryness. In laboratory studies, women who chewed nicotine experienced less blood flow to their genitals than those chewing a placebo (plain gum).
To be sure, it is good to consider whether you have other signs of heart trouble, which can include fatigue, shortness of breath, or heartburn. Also, get a thorough check-up if you have not had one lately. There are, of course, other causes of vaginal dryness, which include early menopause (in women under ages 40 to 45), pre-menopause (which can begin at 40), and side effects of drugs.
When a married woman is hardly ever in the mood, it might be as a result of low level of testosterone in the system. Most of the time, when I say women’s hormonal level should not be low for a good sex life, many couples think that testosterone is only found in the body of the men.
On the contrary, there is no male monopoly of testosterone (although men have more of it). Testosterone is linked to sexual desire in both men and women. In the years before menopause, testosterone levels fall to about half what they were when women were in their 20s. Sometimes, this corresponds to a dip in libido.
One of the various serial checkups that doctors and sex therapists carry out is the testosterone level. Even if a woman’s general health is good and the relationship is good, doctors often check hormone levels. However, female sexual desire is influenced by many factors, both mental and physical. Pre-menopause alone may not explain a loss of desire. Stress, fatigue, boredom, and marital challenges, dispute, trials and ‘un-forgives’ can all contribute.
When a woman is sexually miserable, unhappy, dejected, low, down, sad and depressed. More than often many married women who visit my consulting office always confide in me that they are either sexually depressed, low, sad or miserable. They sincerely want to please their husbands, but the will power and drive is just not there.
When I hear heart-rending cases like this, I investigate the root of the matter. Many people confess that it was not like that when they first got married. But, surprisingly, the loss of interest in sexual activities that once brought wives pleasure, especially with their lovers, is a classic sign of bereavement.
The loss of love oned, cases of unfaithfulness from their husbands, failed marriage, unrealised dreams, truncated trust, some cases of clinical depression. All this and more can numb both desire and sensation, including the ability to climax in many married women.
Married women often don’t link sexual boredom to depression. Nevertheless, if you are feeling low and have experienced other common symptoms of depression, mention it to a sex therapist. (I happen to be one). Depression is highly treatable with talk therapy and natural medication.
When a married woman starts giving endless excuses not to have sex with her husband because she is embarrassed about a strange vaginal odour, it might be due to bacterial vaginosi, which is the leading cause of vaginal complaints in many women in Nigeria.
It is not an infection, but an imbalance in the bacteria normally found in the vagina. Lactobacilli, normally the predominant bacteria found in the vagina, disappear for reasons that are not yet well understood, and other types of bacteria overgrow. This changes the acid-base balance of the vagina to an alkaline one, and the elevated pH is accompanied by protein concentrations that, well, smell.
A mild form smells like ammonia a bad case smells like dead fish. Yeast infections can also cause an off-smelling discharge, but this is less common. In addition, combo yeast-BV infections can also occur to prevent this it very important for women to do a pelvic inflammatory disease examination.
When urine leaks out during sex, it might be as a result of stress incontinence, which is caused by weakened or damaged muscles. Some women wet themselves a little during orgasm and wonder sheepishly if it was not just part of the excitement of sex.
Peeing at any point during sex, whether foreplay, intercourse, or climax, is not normal, Leaking is a form of stress incontinence, the most common form of incontinence in women. It is caused by a weakened or damaged pelvic structure. Childbirth, especially multiple pregnancies and vaginal deliveries, is a leading risk factor. Other risk factors include getting older, smoking, obesity, and having COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) or asthma, which cause chronic coughing.
For most women with stress incontinence, anxiety about future episodes is enough to make them avoid having sex altogether. Fortunately, there are many ways to stop urinary incontinence from sabotaging your sex life. The simplest include avoiding liquids for several hours before sex and immediately before and during foreplay.
BY Funmi Akingbade