With more people frankly discussing the loss of sex drive, studies have been conducted to investigate the reasons behind this. Surprisingly, in addition to hormonal and functional causes like genital issues, one common factor that causes loss of libido in both men and women is lifestyle changes. In addition to improper food habits and loss of exercise, loss of sleep is one of the most common causes of reduced sex drive.
Listed below are some reasons how sleep affects your sex drive:
- Lowers testosterone levels: Optimal amounts of testosterone in the body are required for having a good sex drive. Sleeplessness reduces the amount of testosterone produced in the body, thereby directly affecting the person’s libido. A week with only 5 hours of sleep daily can reduce testosterone levels by 15%, which is equivalent to approximately 10 to 15 years of aging.
- Vaginal lubrication: Studies have shown women who sleep regularly are wetter and have less pain during sex. Painful sex, in turn, reduces the sex drive in women.
- Erectile dysfunction: Improper sleep habits also reduces the quality of erection, thereby leaving you dissatisfied. Patients with sleep apnea who breathe irregularly with pauses in between were identified to have erectile dysfunction. The correlation gets stronger when the erectile dysfunction and sleep apnea improved drastically with regular sleep habits.
- Sleep induced depression: Sleeplessness leads to depression and general fatigue, and the last thing one wants to indulge in when depressed and tired is to have sex.
- Impaired cognitive function: In addition to depression, deprived sleep also leaves you with overall reduced cognitive function, which leads to a vicious cycle of not reacting to your partner’s instincts, etc. If you are not able to decipher whether or not the other person is interested, then the frequency and more importantly the quality of sex is reduced. This again sends out wrong signals to the partner, who will also not make the first move. And that again leads to a gradual decline in your sex life.
- Reduces love: Ever wondered why good sex is followed by a sound sleep and leaves you feeling fresh. There are strong chemical reasons to it sex induces hormones like prolactin which helps you relax and feel rested; it also produces the cuddle hormone oxytocin which increases the goodness feeling; it also reduces cortisol which is the stress hormone. All these increase feelings of belonging and love between the partners, which are affected by lack of sleep.
So, if you and your partner have been wondering how to rekindle your love life, think of getting a good night’s sleep and sex will happen on its own.