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Sexual Health Center

Sexual Health Basics

A sexual disorder is any condition that prohibits a person from experiencing a satisfying sexual encounter. This includes any problem experienced, during any phase of sexual activity. Both men and women are affected by a variety of disorders some of which have a physical cause while others have a psychological base.

What Is a Sexual Disorder?

Sexual dysfunction is defined as the time when a person does not derive satisfaction from sexual activity, whether due to a physical or psychological issue.

  • The four natural phases of sexual function are: excitement, plateau, orgasm and resolution. When these phases are ineffectively completed or not attained, there is a component of sexual dysfunction.
  • Sexual disorders range from the lack of desire to engage in sexual activity to painful intercourse, erectile dysfunction or a sexually transmitted disease (STD).
  • With the proper medical attention or psychotherapy, most sexual disorders are treatable.

Who Does It Affect?

Both men and women are affected by a variety of sexual disorders. According to the statistics, more women are affected by these conditions than men.

  • Between the ages of 18 to 59 years old, 43% of women and 31% of men report some level or type of sexual dysfunction.
  • Senior citizens experience sexual disorders, which are often caused by deteriorating health issues related to aging.
  • People with underlying physical medical conditions and those with psychological issues are both affected.
  • Many menopausal women are affected due to the progressive fluctuation in estrogen levels and other hormonal changes.
  • Stressful situations can influence sexual performance: relationship issues, financial worries, work related stress, chronic illness and other social factors.
  • Sexually transmitted diseases affect both men and women but women tend to experience more severe health issues as a result of them.
  • Lack of sexual desire is a commonly reported problem. About 22% of the population experiences this dysfunction, according to the American Medical Association (AMA).

The Concerns

Sexual health is a difficult topic for many people to discuss, both with their partner and their healthcare provider. It is important to engage in honest discussions with a partner and frank discussions with an appropriate healthcare provider to attain proper care and treatment.

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