Body Image Impacts Sexual Experiences

Research has found that body image and sexual anxiety are predictive of sexual esteem, sexual assertiveness, and avoidance of sexual activity. The research study contributes to the literature of sexual satisfaction in single women aged 30-50 by studying self-esteem, body image, and sexual knowledge. There is a gap in the literature examining sexual satisfaction within the age group of women 30-50 years of age. Walkers’ findings suggest that recommendations for further studies be conducted to focus on these variables in the level of relationship commitment whether a couple is dating infrequently or they are single. Because the variables of self-esteem, body image, sexual knowledge, and sexual satisfaction using an older population have not been studied collectively, it is not known whether sexual experiences are influenced positively or negatively by self-esteem, body image, and sexual knowledge. Individuals may blame their sexual dissatisfaction on sexual dysfunction.

As a woman becomes more familiar physiologically with her body, she can begin to become more aware of how her body will respond when she is sexually stimulated. Many women seek counseling, and those problems that present in the counseling session are rooted in depression. Research studies have stated that the symptoms of depression stem from unsatisfying relationships. Some women have sought help in counseling guidance for relationship problems that are often sexually based. People are almost totally incapable of experiencing a satisfying sexual relationship, whether it is from intercourse, heavy petting, and so forth, without a positive image of their body or normal level of self-esteem. The literature review describes how the self image of the body is developed and formed by environmental factors. Women shape their body image by many factors such as family influence, friends, and media. Many women compare themselves to what society has set as the ideal. The self-efficacy theory will be applied to the variable of body image, which is the second component of the theoretical framework to support the research study. Women’s beliefs and their capabilities to form either a positive or negative image of the body influence the outcome of their sexual experience. Individuals are more likely to continue their efforts until success is achieved if their perceived self-efficacy is high. Increased self-efficacy has been shown to be related to behaviors associated with weight loss and self image of the body.

The literature review describes the environmental factors that contribute to the development of women’s body image. The self-efficacy theory is applied to support the development of body image and one’s capabilities and beliefs to successfully engage in the possession of a positive body image. The literature review analyzes the studies that have been conducted on women and body image. The dissatisfaction of body image plays a significant role in a woman’s self-esteem and how she perceives herself to the world. The self-efficacy theory can be applied to the development of women’s body image in this research study. The theory refers to one’s beliefs in one’s capabilities to successfully engage in specific behaviors. Therefore, the way a woman feels about her body and if she believes she has a positive image of her body, she will successfully engage in positive behaviors. A person who has a negative or positive body image is affected in their sexual pleasure and its relationship to satisfaction.

Women and Sexual Libido Issues

Libido simply means sex drive. A woman’s desire for sex can vary individually. When a woman is in a new relationship she will experience what is commonly called “the honeymoon phase” where sex is abundant whilst over a period a woman’s sex drive will decrease. The frequency of sexual activity ranges from daily to not happening at all. If you are concerned about the decrease in your sexual libido, you might need to seek professional help.

What causes female sexual dysfunction?

Female sexual dysfunction is caused by changes in the sexual desire of women. Menopause is common to induce a decline in a woman’s desire for sex. This is primarily due to a hormonal imbalance. Dyspareunia can cause pain during sexual activity with women. Women who have given birth can experience a decline in their sexual libidos due to hormonal changes especially with the increase of prolactin which is responsible for decreasing female’s libido.

Infections

Infections can also be contributing factors to female sexual dysfunction. Women do experience issues with achieving orgasm and the underlying factors which cause this can stem from both medical and psychological reasons. Infections such as thrush or yeast infections can take any woman’s desire for sex away in an instant.

Diagnosis methods

There are different diagnosis methods which can be utilized in diagnosing women with low libidos. Doctors can perform physical examinations which consist of family histories as well as checking the overall health of the female who is experiencing a low libido. Blood and urine tests are utilized with diagnosing methods as well as hormone tests.

Treatments

Reduced libidos are treated with various styles. Treatments can include seeking any underlying medical problems which the patient might have. Hormone replacement therapy which typically adjusts the balance of hormones in a female’s body. Anti-depressants and stress management have proved to work with females suffering from low sexual libidos. Counseling aids as well with the emotional factors involved with females suffering from sexual issues.

Counseling

Many counseling options are available for women if first they become accepting of the problem. Counseling can aid women with learning new communication skills which will in return aid them in their relationships with their sexual partners. Underlying issues can be addressed through therapy as well as education on different sexual techniques and fantasies and desires.

Some women are reluctant to seek counseling to aid them with their low sexual libido issue however, it is of the utmost importance that if emotional or psychological factors are the problem for their low libido’s they must seek counseling to realize what these issues are.

Where should women seek help for low sexual libidos?

Where can women seek help for their low sexual libidos? Their first place to check should always be with their family doctor. A woman’s family doctor can provide referrals to sex therapists or psychologist. Urologists can aid women as well if there are some underlying medical problems which are affecting a woman’s desire to have sex.

Things every woman should remember

Some things which women need to know about low sexual libidos is that the desire for sexual activity varies individually. Some of the many factors which can affect low sexual libidos in women can be stress, feeling rushed, not being compatible with your sexual partner and any types of drugs which you might currently be taking. Illegal drug usage as well as alcohol abuse can cause a low sexual libido in women. If you are currently taking prescribed medications, you should check to see what the side effects are. If one of the side effects is a decrease in your sex drive, discuss with your medical doctor an alternative to the medication which you are currently taking.

Sex Counseling For Christian Couples

There are several idealistic ways for a Christian couple to seek sexual counseling. For the couple that feels they benefit from reading, there are many books authored by Christian doctors and writers that focus more on intellectual and spiritual content rather than visual. Many books on sexual counseling and other tips can be found at any major chain of bookstore such as Borders or Barnes and Noble but don’t always carry titles found in the more segregated Christian only stores such as Family Christian Stores. Materials can also be purchased online at shops such as Amazon.com and eBay.com.

Great books to read:

  • Intended for Pleasure – Written by Ed Wheat M.D. and Gaye Wheat. An easy to read reference book with many facts and statistics on sexual health and getting the most out of your sexual relationship as a Christian couple. In the third edition, Intended for Pleasure combines biblical teaching on love and marriage with the latest medical information on sex and sexuality.
  • Sacred Sex – Written by Tim Alan Gardner and Scott M. Stanley. Is a great balance of scriptural truth, challenge to change, practical wisdom, reverence of the Marriage Bed, and God-honoring fun. Christian couples should buy it and read it together to celebrate oneness the way God intended.

Another great way to receive sexual counseling is to speak with a medical professional, face to face. This allows a doctor who has studied both Scripture and sexuality to gear key points directly aimed at a couple’s concerns. You can find a therapist, psychologist, or another form of medical doctor at counseling centers. Many of the larger churches offer a list of sorts where their members can find day to day businesses and professionals that have a strong Christian affiliation. One might find a lawyer, doctor, even a psychiatrist who adheres to Scripture in their career. Search online in your city for counseling centers that are of Christian mind.

However, not all professionals have a degree. Some of the happiest Christian couples experience a healthy sexual relationship the way God intended. Sometimes talking with an older Christian couple in a mentoring environment who has gone through the same struggles as you have can do wonders. They may have had the same questions as you and were able to overcome the same obstacles. They also may be able to guide you in the direction of more in depth help if needed.

The second most important person to ask for guidance and advice is your preacher or pastor. Many spiritual leaders are often mediators to several members of their community and church. Sometimes sitting down with someone and talking things through is the best therapy and medicine.

Of course the most important person to talk to is God. Prayer can do powerful things and a couple who prays together stays together can overcome the most drastic obstacles.