There is a new pill undergoing drug trials that promises to help women with their sexual desire issues. Intrigued? Research suggests that over 30% of women suffer from low desire to some degree. There are a number of different theories as to why women suffer from low desire, but researchers have yet to pinpoint an exact cause. Nevertheless, women who have this problem often suffer emotional and relationship stress because of it. Are new drugs like Lybrido and Lybridos the answer to women’s prayers? Or will the drug just cause a chemical change in the body leaving the psychological issues unaddressed?

Who’s Got It?

The Diagnostic and Statistic Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-V) reports that someone with Sexual Arousal Disorder must have absent/reduced interest in sexual activity, sexual thoughts, fantasies, excitement/pleasure during sexual activity, and physical changes in the body during sexual activity (genital and non-genital). This person’s desire is not triggered by erotic stimuli in written, verbal or visual forms. The DSM-V includes that the condition should have caused lifelong distress for the individual. 

Not all women who have low desire meet the DSM-V criteria for a Sexual Arousal Disorder. In fact, sexual desire is an issue for many women who may not come close to meeting those requirements, but still suffer from emotional distress due to their low desire. Researchers are conflicted about why this is so. Some are chalking it up to evolution. They say men just have a higher sex drive, by nature. Others doubt that theory and question culture’s role in sexual desire. Others still think women in the latter category could be experiencing low desire due to postmenopausal changes or common antidepressants (S.S.R.I.s).

There is yet another substantial group of women whose lack of desire seems to be related to long term, monogamous relationships. These are women who once had strong sexual desire for their partners and over time it began to wane. One study showed that in the beginning of a relationship a man and woman’s desire for each other was basically equal, but over time the woman’s desire dipped well below that of her partner. This drop in desire generally happened between one to four years into the relationship.

Researchers aren’t sure about why women suffer from low desire. It could be due to a number of different issues, depending on the individual. One thing is clear, there seems to be a demand for a pill, like Lybrido or Lybridos, that promises a solution to low desire.

Does It Work?

Over the years women have flocked to the various trials of different drugs promising an increase in desire. The pharmaceutical industry started working furiously on a drug for women after the release and success of Viagra. Lybrido and Lybridos have shown very positive results in their drug trials, which many think will lead to further trials being approved by the FDA. If that goes well, it’s possible that the FDA will approve its first ever sexual enhancement drug for women as early as 2016.

Viagra, the male drug for erectile dysfunction, poses a solution to a physical problem, the inability to have or maintain an erection, yet doesn’t provide a solution for men who may be experiencing a lack of sexual desire or interest. That is the challenge that drug makers are facing with women. Lack of desire is a complicated problem and not yet well understood. They can treat the physical and chemical issue, mimicking how the body reacts when a person experiences desire, but that still leaves the question of whether the person’s psychology will truly be altered. The makers of Lybrido/Lybridos claim that their drug does, as it temporarily increases dopamine, which contributes to lust, and reduces serotonin, which is associated with calmness and inhibition.

Still, others worry that drug companies are all too eager to provide a quick fix in the form of a pill to a problem that is actually just a normal lull in a relationship. Pharmaceutical companies have a lot to gain from creating a drug that poses a solution to this issue, but many wonder if the “problem” is actually a problem or just a normal part of relationship dynamics. Another concern is that many leap too quickly at a solution such as this one, instead of focusing on the many ways that a couple can be intimate, or changing the way that relationships and their limitations are viewed. Instead we prefer to pop a pill to make it all better. Will drugs like Lybrido and Lybridos make people less likely to work on improving their relationships? Or will they provide real solutions to women experiencing emotional distress due to their lack of desire?

References

Bergner, D. (2013). Unexcited? There May Be a Pill for That. Retrieved July 18, 2013, from http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/26/magazine/unexcited-there-may-be-a-pill-for-that.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

Landis, S. (2010). Asexuals disappointed by new DSM-V news. HSDD split, Sexual Aversion Disorder Removed. Retrieved July 29, 2013, from http://www.examiner.com/article/asexuals-disappointed-by-new-dsm-v-news-hsdd-split-sexual-aversion-disorder-removed

White, M.D. (2013). Should We Be So Excited About Lybrido (And Viagra)? Retrieved July 29, 2013, from http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/maybe-its-just-me/201305/should-we-be-so-excited-about-lybrido-and-viagra

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BANDAID SOLUTION TO LOW SEXUAL DESIRE by by UrbanSculpt Staff Writer Meghan Stone , MSW, MEd is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.
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