Let's talk sex

Many of us during different stages of life experience different problems related to sexual dysfunction. For men, sexual dysfunction includes not being able to achieve or maintain an erection and/or difficulty with ejaculation. For women, sexual dysfunction commonly refers to vaginal dryness (which can make sexual relations painful), loss of vaginal sensitivity, and difficulty in reaching orgasm.

Causes of sexual dysfunction and contributing factors
There are various causes of sexual dysfunction for someone living with MS, including:

  • lesions on the spinal cord
  • use of certain medications (such as antidepressants)
  • hormone deficiency with advancing age (menopause)

Other factors contributing to the cause of sexual dysfunction for people living with MS include:

  • Medical problems commonly experienced by someone with MS: Fatigue, pain, muscle spasms, and loss of bladder control are commonly experienced by someone diagnosed with MS. Any or all of these problems can lower the person's libido (sex drive), leading to "not tonight, dear."
  • Psychological factors: For many people living with MS, or those whose partners have MS, feelings of stress, anger, guilt, or disappointment may have a negative effect on self-image and self-esteem. These psychological issues may interfere with their personal relationship and their enjoyment of sex. If this affects you, try to talk openly about these problems with your partner and explore new ways to resolve these issues. Some people find the guidance of a trained counsellor or therapist useful in facilitating these discussions. For further information, read "Psychological issues around sexuality and MS" in this feature.
  • Other medical conditions: Some conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and enlarged prostate may also cause erectile problems.

All material copyright MediResource Inc. 1996 – 2021. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Source: www.medbroadcast.com/healthfeature/gethealthfeature/MS-and-Sexuality