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Diabetes Sex Problems

How Does Diabetes Affect Your Sex Life?

How Does Diabetes Affect Your Sex Life?

Having diabetes affects much more than a person's diet - it can impact every aspect of their life, including their sexual health. Similarly, it is not just the physical side effects of diabetes that cause problems. Diabetes can have an impact on a person's mental health, their sex drive, and their self-esteem. How does diabetes impact the sexual organs? Diabetes can affect the sexual health of both men and women in the following ways: Impact on women Damage caused by diabetes to the nerves can affect a woman's ability to sense sexual stimulation and arousal. This can affect the release of vaginal lubricant, which may result in painful sex and reduced ability to experience an orgasm. When a woman who has diabetes goes through the menopause, she may experience sudden drops in her blood sugar levels. This may affect a woman's sexual health because she may have to check her blood sugar before having sex. She might also experience symptoms of low blood sugar during sex. This may make sex seem more of an inconvenience than a pleasure. Women with diabetes are also more likely to experience infections, such as thrush, cystitis, and urinary tract infections. These can all impact the ability to have sexual intercourse. Impact on men Men with diabetes often have reduced testosterone levels, which can affect their sex drive. However, the main sexual health problem affecting men who have diabetes is an inability to achieve and, or, maintain an erection. According to the Joslin Diabetes Center, an estimated 50 percent of men who have had diabetes for 10 years experience erectile dysfunction (ED). In order for a man to achieve an erection, significant blood flow to the penis is required. However, diabetes damages the blood vessels, which can affect blood flow to the penis. Diabetes ca Continue reading >>

Diabetes, Sexual, & Bladder Problems

Diabetes, Sexual, & Bladder Problems

Sexual problems and bladder problems are common as people age, but diabetes can make these problems worse. You or your partner may have trouble having or enjoying sex. Or, you may leak urine or have trouble emptying your bladder normally. Blood vessels and nerves can be damaged by the effects of high blood glucose , also called blood sugar. This damage can lead to sexual and bladder problems. Keeping your blood glucose levels in your target range is an important way to prevent damage to your blood vessels and nerves. Work with your health care team to help prevent or treat sexual and bladder problems . These problems may be signs that you need to manage your diabetes in a different way. Remember, a healthy sex life and a healthy bladder can improve your quality of life, so take action now if you have concerns. Sexual and bladder problems may be signs that you need to manage your diabetes in a different way. Can sexual and bladder problems be symptoms of diabetes? Yes. Changes in sexual function or bladder habits may be a sign that you have diabetes. Nerve damage caused by diabetes, also called diabetic neuropathy , can damage parts of your bodylike your genitals or urinary tract. For example, men with diabetes may develop erectile dysfunction (ED) 10 to 15 years earlier than men without diabetes.1 Talk with a health care professional if you have any symptoms of diabetes , including sexual and bladder problems. When should I see a doctor about my sexual or bladder problems? See a health care professional for problems with sex or your bladder. These problems could be a sign that you need to manage your diabetes differently. You may find it embarrassing and difficult to talk about these things. However, remember that health care professionals are trained to speak with peo Continue reading >>

Sexual Dysfunction In Diabetes

Sexual Dysfunction In Diabetes

Diabetes Complications, Cardiovascular Health, T2 Diabetes Sexual dysfunction is a common yet often overlooked problem for both women and men with diabetes. This is unfortunate, because sexual problems can be harbingers of future cardiovascular disease (CVD) and other serious diabetic complications. Studies of sexual dysfunction in diabetes have mainly focused on erectile dysfunction (ED) in men. Poor research methods, lack of standardized evaluation of sexual function in women, and social taboos have contributed to a historic paucity of data on sexual dysfunction in diabetic women.1 However, known sexual problems in diabetic women include loss of libido, dyspareunia, and low sexual satisfaction, as well as decreased orgasm, lubrication, and arousal. Hyperglycemia as well as vascular and neuropathic complications of diabetes may contribute to sexual dysfunction in women. Atherosclerosis and diabetes-related endothelial dysfunction in women can cause decreased labial engorgement and clitoral insufficiency. Exposure to chronic hyperglycemia can decrease hydration of the vaginal mucous membranes, leading to decreased lubrication and dyspareunia. Genitourinary and fungal infections related to hyperglycemia can also contribute to dyspareunia. Finally, diabetic neuropathy can affect the nerves supplying the female genitals, causing decreased response and impaired reaction to sexual stimuli.2 While the association between erectile dysfunction and CV risk is well known in men, less is known in women. However, a link between cardiometabolic risk, vascular complications of diabetes, and sexual dysfunction in women would not be surprising. A recent study used Doppler ultrasound to evaluate clitoral blood flow in 71 women. Results showed that increased clitoral vascular resistance Continue reading >>

Diabetes And Sexual Health In Men: Understanding The Connection

Diabetes And Sexual Health In Men: Understanding The Connection

Diabetes is a leading cause of sexual health issues in people, along with hypertension, high cholesterol, and smoking. It can affect nerve function and blood flow to any place in the body. One area that can often be affected is the genitals. “In men, this can commonly manifest as erectile dysfunction,” says Kenneth Snow, M.D., Joslin’s Acting Chief of Adult Diabetes. Men with poorly controlled diabetes are more likely to have sexual issues than those in good control. Men who have good control of their diabetes can still have issues, according to Dr. Snow, but they are more likely to be mild and responsive to therapy. Diabetes Complications and Sexual Health The biggest cause of sexual issues for men is nerve and artery damage in the genital area, which disrupts blood flow and can cause erectile dysfunction. Erectile dysfunction is known to occur in over one-half of men who’ve had diabetes for 10 years. Studies have shown that men with erectile dysfunction and diabetes are also more likely to have heart disease, because the risk factors for erectile dysfunction are the same as for coronary artery disease. “The same problems that lead to decreased blood flow in the arteries in the penis, lead to blockages in the arteries of the heart,” Dr. Snow says. Other sexual health issues can include: Decreased libido – often stemming from depression or low levels of testosterone Premature/delayed ejaculation Maintaining Sexual Health with Diabetes Complications and sexual issues can be avoided by taking proper care of your diabetes. Keep your diabetes, blood pressure, and cholesterol under control, Dr. Snow says. Along with properly managing your diabetes, other options for treatment can include: Oral medications, including Cialis, Levitra, and Viagra Mechanical method Continue reading >>

Sexual Health

Sexual Health

A healthy sexual relationship can be an important part of someone's life. When things go wrong, whether or not we have diabetes, many of us find it hard to accept that there might be a problem. It’s important to know support available. While most people with diabetes, both male and female, are able to lead completely normal sex lives, diabetes may contribute to sexual problems for some people The most common problem is erectile dysfunction in men (also known as impotence) which results in the inability to get or keep an erection long enough for intercourse. Ejaculation may or may not be affected. Fertility remains normal Both men and women with diabetes may also lose their sexual desire when their blood glucose levels are high Most men have an occasional problem with erectile dysfunction at some time in their life. This can be caused by many factors including being tired, stressed, and depressed or drinking too much alcohol. Some medications may also cause erectile dysfunction. This can include medications taken for high blood pressure, depression or stomach ulcers. It’s important to always tell your doctor about any medications you may be taking for other conditions. Reduced blood flow and nerve damage to the penis are generally the underlying reasons for erectile dysfunction for men with diabetes. Often men with diabetes who have the condition also have other complications related to nerve damage or blood circulation problems, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol or heart disease. Erectile dysfunction can be treated in a number of ways including: Tablets (e.g. Viagra, Cialis and Levitra) Prostaglandin injection into the side of the penis (e.g. Caverject) Devices such as the vacuum pump Surgery such as penile implants While tablets are easy to take, they m Continue reading >>

Beating Sexual Problems

Beating Sexual Problems

Tweet Sexual problems can be disheartening but they needn’t take all the pleasure out of your sex life. This article looks at how to work around sexual difficulties if treatment is either not possible or not desired. Direct treatments are covered within our guides on erectile dysfunction, female sexual dysfunction and low libido. Loss of sensation Diabetes can affect our nerves, in the form of neuropathy, and loss of sensation in the penis, clitoris and vagina is possible as well. Trying out different positions may help to find positions which enhance sensation and therefore make reaching orgasm easier. Oral sex Oral sex can be pleasurable to give or receive whether climax is involved or not. Oral sex can be a good option if you’re having unexpected difficulties and can also keep your sex life alive and kicking when sexual dysfunction is a longer term issue. When climax is unobtainable Climax may not always be possible for one reason or another. Reasons for having difficulty reaching climax include having loss of sensitivity, psychological issues and having low blood sugar. As we age, we may find it harder to reach climax. If an orgasm seems unobtainable, switch the focus of your love making either onto pleasuring your partner or in building an intimate sensual bond. If you can have penetrative sex but cannot orgasm, positions which maximise body to body contact, eye contact and kissing can be sensual and fulfilling without necessarily requiring climax. Communicate with your partner If you are having difficulties, it’s important to let your partner know. If you’re not having as much sex as you used to, chances are that your partner will have recognised even if it hasn’t been mentioned. If you address the issue, it’ll save your partner from being anxious and Continue reading >>

How Diabetes Affects Your Sex Life

How Diabetes Affects Your Sex Life

It's easy to pin a lagging libido on stress, depression, age, or lack of sleep. But if your sexual feelings have changed or if intercourse has become uncomfortable or nearly impossible, either as a result of chronically high blood glucose levels (an occasional high level will not cause long-term problems) or nerve problems, diabetes could be the cause. Experts estimate that 75 percent of men and 35 percent of women with diabetes experience some sexual problems due to diabetic neuropathy (nerve damage) to the nerves that stimulate normal sexual response. The good news: Research has shown that people can lower their risk for diabetes-related sexual problems by taking steps to control their diabetes, including: The Diabetes Control and Complications Trial (DCCT), a 10-year National Institutes of Health study of individuals with type 1 diabetes, found that improved diabetes control decreased the risk of developing neuropathy by 60 percent. This means the steps you can take to manage your diabetes are the same keys that open the doors to a healthy sexual relationship. What Women Should Know About Sex and Diabetes Women with diabetes may find it difficult to stimulate lubrication, experience orgasm, or even feel sexual desire due to nerve damage. These steps can reduce sexual complications and increase pleasure. Get rid of dryness: For persistent vaginal dryness, purchase a water-base vaginal lubricant over the counter from any pharmacy. You might also work on relaxing the muscles around the vagina with Kegel exercises: contracting your pelvic muscles to control the flow of urine. Lose weight: Being overweight can contribute to low self-esteem and loss of libido. A recent Duke University study found that shedding weight (17.5 percent of body weight) helped obese men and women Continue reading >>

Can Diabetes Cause Sexual Dysfunction In Men And Women?

Can Diabetes Cause Sexual Dysfunction In Men And Women?

Sex is part of life. Yet most people in our society choose to sidestep any issues relating to this topic. One of the biggest concern is sexual dysfunction. It has been reported that 31 percent of males and 43 percent of females in the United States suffer from various degrees of achieving sexual satisfaction. What is even less mentioned is that diabetes plays an active role in this problem for both men and women. Because treatment options are available, it is important to share your concerns with your partner and health care provider. To lessen the stigma concerning this health issue, this article will discuss in detail how diabetes can cause sexual dysfunction and related following topics: Contents What is Sexual Dysfunction? It is a term given to any problems that inhibit an individual from attaining pleasure during any stage of the sexual response cycle which includes: Excitement phase. It is sometimes known as the initial desire or arousal stage. This primary stage of the cycle is marked by sexual arousal resulting from various physical and/or psychological stimulation. The most common forms of stimuli are: Tactile sensations such as hugging, caressing, petting, kissing, and sometimes tickling Visual and sound cues such as viewing erotically arousing pictures, videos, and sound clips. Odor cues such a fragrances, incense aroma, and inviting smell according to personal preferences. Mental visualization cues such as visual imagery In this phase, the body will exhibit a rise in breathing and cardiovascular activity. As a result of hormone fluctuation, many people will exhibit the symptoms of sex flush which is marked by reddened skin and warmer body temperature. These are all signs that the body is getting ready for the initial stage of intercourse. Plateau phase. Duri Continue reading >>

When Diabetes Affects Your Sex Life

When Diabetes Affects Your Sex Life

Mike’s doctor looked and sounded concerned. “Your sugars are up, your blood pressure is up, and you’ve gained 10 pounds since I last saw you, ” she said. “You were doing so well. What happened? ” “I don’t know,” said Mike. “I’m just down. Exercising and checking my blood glucose don’t seem worth the effort now. My neuropathy is burning holes in my feet. It’s been a hard year.” “Sounds to me like you’re depressed,” said the doctor. She then wrote out a prescription for a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) for Mike’s depression and another for a refill of Mike’s usual blood pressure medicine, but this time with a higher dose. The doctor didn’t ask about Mike’s sex life, and Mike didn’t volunteer that what was really bothering him was that he and his wife Barbara had stopped having sex about 10 months before. He couldn’t count on getting erections or keeping them, and without them, he withdrew, both physically and emotionally. He and Barbara were miserable. Unfortunately, both of the medicines his doctor had just prescribed can have the side effects of decreasing sex drive and making it harder for men to have erections. So the new treatments were potentially going to make Mike’s problem worse. Mike hadn’t mentioned his sexual problems to his doctor because he felt embarrassed about them, and his doctor apparently didn’t think to ask about sexual issues. Had she known about Mike’s erection difficulties, she might have prescribed a drug for erectile dysfunction rather than an antidepressant. But Mike had already bought some Viagra on the Internet. It had helped a little with the erections, but not much, and it did nothing for his energy level or low mood. Barbara was at her wit’s end. She thought Mike’s wit Continue reading >>

Sex, Urinary, And Bladder Problems Of Diabetes

Sex, Urinary, And Bladder Problems Of Diabetes

What sexual problems can occur in men with diabetes? Erectile Dysfunction Erectile dysfunction is a consistent inability to have an erection firm enough for sexual intercourse. The condition includes the total inability to have an erection and the inability to sustain an erection. Estimates of the prevalence of erectile dysfunction in men with diabetes vary widely, ranging from 20 to 75 percent. Men who have diabetes are two to three times more likely to have erectile dysfunction than men who do not have diabetes. Among men with erectile dysfunction, those with diabetes may experience the problem as much as 10 to 15 years earlier than men without diabetes. Research suggests that erectile dysfunction may be an early marker of diabetes, particularly in men ages 45 and younger. In addition to diabetes, other major causes of erectile dysfunction include high blood pressure, kidney disease, alcohol abuse, and blood vessel disease. Erectile dysfunction may also occur because of the side effects of medications, psychological factors, smoking, and hormonal deficiencies. Men who experience erectile dysfunction should consider talking with a health care provider. The health care provider may ask about the patient's medical history, the type and frequency of sexual problems, medications, smoking and drinking habits, and other health conditions. A physical exam and laboratory tests may help pinpoint causes of sexual problems. The health care provider will check blood glucose control and hormone levels and may ask the patient to do a test at home that checks for erections that occur during sleep. The health care provider may also ask whether the patient is depressed or has recently experienced upsetting changes in his life. Treatments for erectile dysfunction caused by nerve damage, Continue reading >>

Better Sex With Diabetes

Better Sex With Diabetes

WebMD Feature Reviewed by Michael Dansinger, MD Diabetes doesn't have to feel like a third -- and unwanted -- party in bed. You can deal with things like low blood sugar, vaginal dryness, or erection problems by looking at them as hurdles you can overcome, instead of roadblocks that put a stop to sex. Planning ahead can ease some of the challenges. You may associate prep work more with house painting than with having sex, but it can make intimacy more relaxed. Also remember that taking good care of your diabetes is the No. 1 way to prevent or limit sexual issues with diabetes. These tricks and tips can also make sex easier and more fun. 10 Strategies for Better Sex Approach sex like exercise. This helps prevent dreaded blood sugar lows. "Hypoglycemic events during sex are a real buzzkill," says Kerri Morrone Sparling, the author of Balancing Diabetes: Conversations About Finding Happiness and Living Well, who blogs about her life with type 1 diabetes. "Your body just shuts down during a low, so it crushes the enjoyment." If you use insulin, check your blood sugar before sex and have a snack if it's low. For more fun, incorporate snacks into foreplay. Try strawberries or a little ice cream or chocolate. Just go with it. Planning can be helpful, but don't sweat it if sex just happens. "There's no reason not to grab the opportunity if it pops up just because you haven't followed your diabetes exercise routine," says Scott K. Johnson, a diabetes advocate who blogs about his life with type 1 diabetes. Just check your glucose level after. Use a lubricant. If you are a woman with vaginal dryness, a vaginal lubricant can make sex feel better. Ask your doctor about using one regularly, not just during sex. "Think of it like hand cream," says Janis Roszler, a diabetes educator in Continue reading >>

How Diabetes Affects Sexual Function

How Diabetes Affects Sexual Function

Diabetes can affect sexual function, and as uncomfortable as it may sound, you may need to discuss this with your doctor (and certainly with your partner). To help you out, I have done research to bring you information about this most sensitive of subjects. First of all, having any chronic disease may in itself cause anxiety, which can result in sexual dysfunction. But having said that, it is also true that diabetics do report more sexual dysfunction than the populations at large. In his book Talking About Sex (American Psychiatric Press, Inc., 1995), Derek C. Polonsky, MD states that 20% of people with diabetes, both men and women, report sexual dysfunction. Please read the following with an open mind, not looking for something bad which will happen to you or a loved one. Rather use it as a tool to make you better informed, and more able to talk to the professionals in your life who can help when you need it. As Dr. Polonsky says, "What starts out as a physical problem is compounded by the emotional reaction to it." This article is shared to help all of us deal with the physical before this occurs. Research on Diabetes and Sexual Dysfunction There is more research on sexual dysfunction in males than females. In males, current research points to the need to develop a comprehensive biopsychosocial evaluation and treatment of diabetic patients with sexual dysfunction because of the high incidence of major depression and anxiety disorders noted in impotent men with neuropathy as compared to those who did not have depression, anxiety, or impotence, but had neuropathy. One caveat here is that just learning to cope with a chronic disease may cause psychiatric problems which may lead to lack of compliance, and may snowball into chronic complications, and so the process feeds o Continue reading >>

Don't Ignore These Diabetes-related Sexual Problems

Don't Ignore These Diabetes-related Sexual Problems

Don't Ignore These Diabetes-Related Sexual Problems Tips to help keep diabetes from interfering with your sex life. Videos: Eating Smart With Martha McKittrick, RD While nightly TV drug commercials seem to imply that sexual dysfunction is a problem only for slim, silver-haired men on vacation, it can plague a larger, and often younger, group of people because of diabetes. Men and women with diabetes can face a variety of challenges in the bedroom, from erectile dysfunction to loss of sensation or lack of desire. Studies have estimated that anywhere from 20 to 75 percent of men with diabetes suffer from impaired sexual function, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), and between 18 and 42 percent of women are affected. Why Diabetes Is Linked to Sexual Problems Most sexual problems related to diabetes can be traced back to restricted blood flow and nerve damage. If blood sugars are too high, blood vessels and nerves throughout the body are damaged, says Joshua Safer, MD , an endocrinologist at Boston Medical Center and an associate professor of medicine at Boston University School of Medicine. If a person has had high blood sugar for years, this damage can injure vital organs, including the eyes, kidneys , and heart. But the places that are going to suffer first are the places farther out our fingers and toes, says Dr. Safer. In men, the penis is also susceptible. Women may experience nerve damage and blood flow problems in the genitals, too, he adds, although the phenomenon is less well studied in women. People with type 2 diabetes may be at additional risk because of such related health issues as unhealthy cholesterol levels, excess abdominal fat, and high blood pressure, which can further damage blood vessels. A diab Continue reading >>

Type 2 Diabetes And Sexual Health

Type 2 Diabetes And Sexual Health

With chronic illness, sex often gets put on the back burner. But sexuality and sexual expression are at the top of the list when it comes to quality of life, no matter what problems a person may face. People with type 2 diabetes are no different. It’s important to recognize and address sexuality issues that affect people with diabetes. Type 2 diabetes can cause sexual complications for both genders, and can also cause gender-specific issues. A common sexuality problem in people with type 2 diabetes is a decrease in libido, or loss of a sex drive. This can be frustrating if someone had a thriving libido and satisfying sex life prior to a type 2 diabetes diagnosis. Causes of a low libido associated with type 2 diabetes include: side effects of medications for high blood pressure or depression extreme fatigue lack of energy depression hormonal changes stress, anxiety, and relationship issues Diabetic neuropathy, a type of nerve damage associated with diabetes, can cause issues. Numbness, pain, or lack of feeling can also occur in the genitals. This can lead to erectile dysfunction. It may also inhibit orgasm or make it difficult to feel sexual stimulation. These side effects can make sex painful or unenjoyable. Communication between partners about sexual issues is important. A lack of communication can impact the sexual and intimate side of a relationship. An illness can make it easy for couples to “check out” of the relationship sexually. Sometimes it may seem easier to avoid talking about this issue rather than seeking a solution. If one partner becomes the primary caregiver of the other, it can also change how each person views the other. It’s easy to get caught up in the roles of “patient” and “caregiver” and let the romance can slip away. The most wide Continue reading >>

Sexual Dysfunction In Women With Type 1 Diabetes

Sexual Dysfunction In Women With Type 1 Diabetes

Abstract OBJECTIVE—This study aimed to 1) examine the prevalence of sexual problems in women with type 1 diabetes, 2) compare this prevalence rate with that of an age-matched control group, 3) study the influence of diabetes-related somatic factors on female sexuality, and 4) study the influence of psychological variables on the sexual functioning of both groups. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS—A total of 120 women with diabetes visiting the outpatient diabetes clinic completed questionnaires evaluating psychological adjustment to diabetes, marital satisfaction, depression, and sexual functioning. Medical records were used to obtain data on HbA1c, use of medication, BMI, and early-onset microvascular complications. An age-matched control group of 180 healthy women attending an outpatient gynecological clinic for preventive routine gynecological assessment also completed the non–diabetes-related questionnaires. RESULTS—More women with diabetes than control subjects reported sexual dysfunction (27 vs. 15%; P = 0.04), but a significant difference was found only for decreased lubrication. No association was found between sexual dysfunction and age, BMI, duration of diabetes, HbA1c, use of medication, menopausal status, or complications. Women with more complications, however, reported significantly more sexual dysfunctions, and the presence of complications altered treatment satisfaction. Both diabetic and control women with sexual dysfunction mentioned lower overall quality of the marital relation and more depressive symptoms than their respective counterparts without sexual problems. Depression was a significant predictor for sexual dysfunction in both women with diabetes and control subjects. CONCLUSIONS—Sexual problems are frequent in women with diabetes. They aff Continue reading >>

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