Anxiety & Sex Drive
3 mins read

Anxiety & Sex Drive

If your heart is pounding and you are starting to sweat, feel weak and dizzy, you aren’t exactly feeling sexy. You are having a panic attack. Even if you don’t suffer these sorts of attacks and merely worry about things like money, work or just getting through the day, you could be suffering from anxiety, and that can affect your sex drive.


People who have a generalized anxiety disorder worry excessively about a variety of problems. They may realize that their anxiety is worse than what the situation warrants, but they just can’t seem to relax, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. People with anxiety often startle easily, have a difficult time concentrating and have trouble sleeping. Physical symptoms, such as fatigue, headaches, irritability and nausea, can accompany anxiety. For a person with anxiety, sex is often the last thing on her mind.

Anxiety and Sex

Anxiety disorders fall into different categories, with sexual dysfunctions being one of them. A sexual dysfunction due to anxiety disturbs all three phases of the sexual response cycle, which are desire, arousal and orgasm, according to the Psychiatric Times website. Anxiety can affect both men and women when it comes to sex. Anxiety shuts down the pleasure center of your brain, says Miriam Baker, sex therapist on the “CBS News.” When people become anxious, they are running away from dinosaurs, not ready for intercourse, says Dr. Ken Rosenberg, a New York City psychiatrist who specializes in sexual disorders on the 4 Men website. Rosenberg points out that when people are anxious, they cannot perform well sexually.

Performance Anxiety

Although many people think of men when it comes to performance anxiety, women can have anxiety about their ability to achieve orgasm. A man’s anxiety can become so great as to render the man impotent, and the woman’s anxiety can result in a reduction in lubrication and the inability to achieve orgasm. If a woman cannot achieve an orgasm when she is with a partner, but she can when she is alone, she has performance anxiety, according to the Dr. Phil website. Anxiety causes tension, and you need to be relaxed to achieve an orgasm.

Focus on the Moment

When people do try to have sex when they are anxious, they are usually worrying about having an orgasm or if they are pleasing their partner. It would be more beneficial for the person with anxiety to try to focus on the moment. The anxious person should think about the relationship and the sensual experiences they are having and forget about the final product.

Healthy Mind and Body

Other methods you can try to alleviate anxiety are to make sure that your body is healthy, according to the Third Age website. Eat a balanced diet, drink plenty of water, get enough sleep, exercise and practice relaxation techniques, such as yoga, meditation or deep breathing. Try to enjoy life more outside the bedroom if you want to enjoy life in the bedroom. Spend time doing activities you enjoy. Hang out with some friends or read a good book. A healthy mind and body will help you to keep your problems out of the bedroom. If nothing works for you, you may need to seek professional counseling, such as a sex therapist, a psychologist or a marriage counselor.

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