Contemporary Western societies are as close to being obsessed with sex as they’ve ever been. Sexuality is flaunted everywhere, from television to the internet, and while some are completely appreciative of the sexual freedom our age grants, phenomena like “slut-shaming”, a movement which embarrasses women who flaunt their sexuality, gain popularity as well.
In this context, it becomes hard, especially for young men and women alike, to figure out what is considered ‘normal’ in regards to their sexuality. This confusion often leads people to feel ashamed both when they have a very high or low libido.
As a general rule, men are more prone to being aroused the majority of the time — both science and real-world experiences have shown that. However, there is a good percentage of women who also function that way, and there are some men who wouldn’t just jump at any chance of ‘getting laid’.
The secret to understanding both male and female sexual drive and desire is in testosterone, the “male hormone”, which is thought to be responsible for the libido.
A healthy young woman has a higher percentage of testosterone in her body than she does of some types of estrogen, the “female hormone”. As a result, she is more likely to have a stronger sex drive. This situation changes over time though, even for men, who also see their levels of the hormone lower with age.
This is not however the only possible cause for low libido both in men and women. Several unrelated diseases, both physical and psychological, can leave males and females feeling disenchanted or under stimulated by sex. Those include depression and diabetes for instance, but they are not the only diseases that interfere with sexual drive.
A particular disease called Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder, which is characterized by low libido, has been recognized and studied in women for years, prompting the search for the “female Viagra”.
No such disease has been identified in men, but that does not mean low libido is something for a man to be ashamed of. In fact, low libido has been linked to several phenomena that affect men in particular, such as hair loss and aging.
What is important to retain is that low libido is not normal per se, but it can usually be easily explained by physical or psychological causes and be treated accordingly. For that reason, it is essential for women and men to recognize that their sex drive may be lower than normal and see a doctor in order to be able to understand and fix the problem.