We all have experienced it at one point or another: lack of libido, pain during sex, or an inability to orgasm. We all know that our bodies soetimes have a mind of their own. Some women experience chronic sexual difficulties to the point where they feel that things are never 'the way they are supposed to be'.
In some of these cases, doctors use the term 'sexual dysfunction' to describe a variety of problems that women can encounter with regard to their sexual functioning. It encompasses both physical and emotional problems. Most women will at some point in their lives face one or more of these challenges. Sexual difficulties are very common, they can be transient or chronic, but unfortunately they are often neglected and lower the woman's self-esteem.
In recent years, research into the area of female sexuality has become more focused. A study from The University of Chicago and the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School reported:
43% of women experience sexual dysfunction in some form or another
21% of women between the ages of 18 to 29 reported physical pain with intercourse
27% reported sexual experiences to be un-pleasurable
16% reported sexual anxiety
In a 2003 web survey conducted from the Department of Urology and Psychiatry at UCLA Medical School, approximately 40% of women reported that they did not seek treatment for issues related to sexual dysfunction. This is not surprising as sexual dysfunction in women often goes unnoticed, is neglected, or surrounded with shame.
SYMPTOMS OF SEXUAL DYSFUNCTION
Female sexual dysfunction includes the following symptoms:
Low sex drive
Pain during or after intercourse
Inability to achieve orgasm
Problems getting sexually aroused
Sexual problems are often the result of both physical (medical) problems and emotional issues. When a physical condition is diagnosed, it can usually be treated with relative ease and in a short time period.
Healing sexual problems of a psychological and emotional nature is more complex and the healing process typically has a gradual curve of healing. The healing strategy often requires a range of methods and can include psychotherapy, sex therapy, yoga therapy, tantric bodwyork, and other alternative treatments.
CAUSES OF SEXUAL DIFFICULTIES
Physical issues contributing to sexual dysfunction in women include:
Insufficient blood flow
Some psychological issues contributing to sexual dysfunction in women:
Problems resulting from stress
Communication problems with your partner about sex
Conflicting levels of desire in a couple
Problems resulting from long periods of inactivity
Problems resulting from feelings of betrayal
HEALING & PROMOTING A HEALTHY SEXUALITY
The ancient tradition of yoga, and the modern application of yogic science, has excellent tools to work with both the body and mind to adress sexual dysfunction on the physical, energetic, emotional, mental, and spiritual level.
In Yoga Therapy, the sexual problems are addressed and treated through a combination of physical postures, energy work, breathing practices, self-awareness, psycho-spiritual work, sexological bodywork, and complimentary treatments. Developing self-insight, self-acceptance, and self-love are often a big part of the process. On top of that, we find that often sexual dysfunctions can be treated by adressing hormonal or energetic imbalances.