How Diabetes Can Affect Your Sex Life

“No sugar for you” has quite the double meaning for diabetics! We know that diabetics are forced to give up sugar due to their condition, but did you know that diabetes also affects a person’s sex life? Since you’re too embarrassed to discuss this problem with your doctor, you keep hoping that things will get better, but eventually you’re forced to give up on your sex life and you and your spouse start to drift apart.

But, is this inevitable and why does it happen?

Sexual Problems In Women With Diabetes

Sure we’ve progressed and urban Indian women can hold their own, but some of our conservative ideas are so deep seated that we can’t quite shake them. And the one thing that we are loathe to discuss is our sexual “failings.  Experts estimate that at least 35% of women with diabetes experience one or more sexual problems, but the most common ones are a decrease in natural vaginal lubrication and a reduction in libido.

 Decreased Vaginal Lubrication

“Women with diabetes have neurovascular problems as well as slowed blood flow to the vaginal region which is why they experience decreased vaginal lubrication”

Diabetes is characterized by high blood sugar levels which cause nerve damage throughout the body. Women with diabetes have more neurovascular problems as well as slowed blood flow to the vaginal region which is why they experience decreased vaginal lubrication. In addition to increasing time spent in foreplay, use plenty of lube to keep things running smoothly!

Decreased Or No Desire For Sex

“50% of diabetic women reported decreased sexual desire and that sexual problems in diabetic women is associated with a high prevalence of depression”

According to typical gender stereotypes, women don’t desire sex as much as men, but this is just not true. Researchers found that 50% of diabetic women reported decreased sexual desire and that sexual problems in diabetic women are associated with a high prevalence of depression. This is because sex is an important aspect of any relationship as it strengthens the emotional bond between spouses. Luckily, there are several behavioral therapies and natural treatments to increase libido levels.

Sexual Problems In Men With Diabetes

Sexual problems can be a very sensitive issue for men as it is perceived as a threat to their masculine identity. Diabetes hits men harder than women as experts estimate that up to 75% of diabetic men experience sexual problems caused by nerve damage caused by diabetes.

 Erectile Dysfunction

“In some cases medication might be necessary but psychological counselling is also very effective in order to reduce stress and anxiety which in turn will help to control the problem”

Diabetic men often complain that their blood sugar levels are the only thing that’s up! Erectile dysfunction is the inability to maintain an erection that is firm enough for penetration and sexual intercourse. In some cases medication might be necessary, but psychological counselling is also very effective in order to reduce stress and anxiety which in turn will help to control the problem.

Retrograde Ejaculation

“Retrograde ejaculation in diabetic men is linked to long term poor blood sugar control”

Retrograde ejaculation is a condition in which ejaculated semen goes back into the bladder instead of being expelled. If you’ve been struggling to get your blood sugar levels under control for years, you are likely to face retrograde ejaculation as this condition is caused by damage to the nerves of the bladder sphincter. This is why it is essential for diabetics to control their blood sugar levels. If you are trying to get pregnant, don’t despair as there are fertility treatments that can help.

Our Advice

Despite diabetes, it is possible for you to have a fulfilling relationship that includes sex. The best thing you could do would be to discuss your problems with your health care provider. In addition, going for counselling and making healthy lifestyle changes through diet, exercise, and stress reduction, will help improve both blood glucose levels and sexual performance.

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