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Sexual arousal disorder is characterized by an inability to become aroused and maintain sexual excitement despite adequate sexual stimulation. For most women, this problem occurs after a period of experiencing normal sexual arousal. Typically, when a woman becomes aroused, her body will respond physically (vaginal lubrication and genital swelling) and experience mental and emotional excitement. Sexual arousal disorder is when this arousal response doesn't occur as expected. It may be that the desire is there, but the body or mind (and sometimes both) don't respond. Sexual arousal disorder can happen because of emotional, physical, and behavioral (for example, alcohol and tobacco use) reasons. Emotional discord in a relationship, depression, stressful situations, and fear of intimacy can all play a role. 

Physical problems that can significantly interfere with sexual arousal include pain from endometriosis, infections and hormone imbalance.

How is sexual arousal disorder treated?
Fortunately, no matter the reason, sexual arousal disorder can be addressed. A thorough review of your medical history and a physical examination can help to determine if the cause if primarily psychological or physical. Counseling is also effective in treating this disorder. Balance Women's Health providers recognize the importance of an individualized plan to treat sexual arousal disorder. 

Additional Resources

Endometriosis
Bladder Infection (cystitis)
Vaginal Infection (vaginosis)

Please remember this information is intended for educational purposes only and should not substitute medical advice from a healthcare provider.