A book for women of all ages - learn how to get your mojo back and have an exciting and fulfilling sex life!
No matter what age you are, it's always possible to have a sex life - and a great one at that! But unfortunately for some women there are physical and psychological reasons why they just can't achieve this.
In the new release Increase your Sex Drive naturally, best-selling Australian author Dr Sandra Cabot provides readers with a practical guide to getting their sex life back on track. Applicable to women of all ages, Dr Cabot covers topics such as dealing with hormonal imbalance, painful sex & infections, menopause, lack of sexual confidence & libido, and other common issues.
Dr Cabot is a medical doctor who sees thousands of women every year asking for help with their sex life - she's helped them achieve this and with her new book she can help women all over Australia too.
Dr Cabot's book provides help for the following problems:
Menopause and Hormonal imbalance
Pain and/or discomfort during sex
Vaginal infections or odour
Vulvodynia (chronic vulval pain)
Bladder and bowel prolapse
Skin problems of the vulva
Loss of romantic feelings
Infection with herpes or the wart virus
Lack of sexual confidence
Loss of libido or total disinterest in sex
Trouble communicating with your lover
Lack of lubrication
Inability to orgasm
Inability to achieve sexual satisfaction
Increase Your Sex Drive Naturally
Author: Dr Sandra Cabot
Question: What inspired you to write Increase Your Sex Drive Naturally?
Dr Sandra Cabot: I decided to write a book on love and sex because, over the almost 40 years of practising medicine, I have often been asked for help to overcome sexual problems by many of my female patients.
I am not a sex therapist but I do have an enormous amount of clinical experience in helping women with hormonal problems. If your sex hormones are out of balance, your sex life will suffer and my book explains how to use bio-identical hormones to restore a normal and healthy balance of sex hormones; it also explains how you can maximise the health of your sexual organs using nutritional medicine.
Question: What tips do you have for females who are having trouble communicating with their partner?
Dr Sandra Cabot: Throw away your inhibitions and talk to your lover about what turns you on. Don't get too serious and remember to lighten up and enjoy your sex life. Being too serious about sex becomes stressful, fraught with insecurities and worries about your performance etc. Don't be concerned with imagined inadequacies or imperfections - just think about sex!
Get the chemistry of desire going and lift your spirits by getting in a positive confident state of mind. Wear sexy clothes, read racy books and be intimate whenever possible.
If you come from a conservative family background, you may have been conditioned during childhood that it's not ladylike or good manners to talk about sexual matters. Even worse if you were a victim of childhood sexual abuse, you may carry very deep and suppressed fears in your subconscious mind; indeed you may be totally unaware of these negative emotions but they could still be causing you anxiety. If you suspect this could be relevant to you, see your family doctor who can refer you to a good psychologist, a sex therapist and/or a clinical hypnotherapist.
Question: How will we know if we have a vaginal infection?
Dr Sandra Cabot: A vaginal infection often shows up as either a vaginal odour and/or a vaginal discharge.
A vaginal odour can be a turn off for both partners of a sexual relationship just as much as bad breath can be; interestingly, by improving your gut health you can improve both problems. Vaginal odour is most often caused by unfriendly bacteria growing in the vagina and these can originate on the skin around the anus and from the bowel.
Infection with the yeast organism called candida does not usually produce an odour but often causes an excess vaginal discharge that is thick and white and may cause itchiness around the vulva.
All of these infections can be controlled by improving the immune system and diet. Those affected should eat more raw vegetable salads and avoid sugar. Sugar feeds bacterial and yeast infections - in fact, it is best to eliminate processed foods as well as foods high in sugar.
Avoid antibiotic drugs and antibiotic cream if possible, as these will only produce a temporary fix and lead to an overgrowth of candida.
Question: How common is lack of sexual confidence and libido?
Dr Sandra Cabot: I see a lot of women with hormonal problems ranging from menopause and polycystic ovarian syndrome to unexplained infertility and weight problems. During the history taking, many women often complain that they have lost their interest in sex and they are not happy about this.
Over the nearly 40 years that I have been a medical doctor, I have observed that none of my female patients have ever asked for help to improve their sexual performance; instead they ask for help to improve their libido and/or their ability to achieve orgasms and sexual satisfaction.
Women tend to lack or lose interest in sex far more than men do - do we blame it on the planets, on our hormonal differences or is it due to our different sex chromosomes? I tend to think it is the latter - after all, our DNA is the genetic code that makes us who we are.
Question: Can you provide some practical tips for getting sex lives back on track?
Dr Sandra Cabot: Stay young and sexy with bio-identical hormones! There are three different bio-identical sex hormones:
Each one of these is vital and must be present in the right levels for a woman to feel sexy. Blood tests can be done to determine the correct dose of these hormones for the individual woman - getting it right is vital to a happy and fulfilled life (not just in the bedroom!)
For example, progesterone deficiency is very common in women today because they often delay pregnancy to later in life and have fewer pregnancies. Progesterone deficiency can cause unpleasant symptoms such as loss of sex drive, anxiety, irritability and depression. Progesterone deficiency can also cause physical health problems such as heavy and/or painful menstrual bleeding, endometriosis, fibroids, pelvic congestion, an increased risk of cancer, premenstrual headaches, polycystic ovarian syndrome and unexplained infertility.
The good news is that natural progesterone therapy can often alleviate these symptoms in women of all ages. I recommend only the use of natural progesterone, which has a chemical structure identical to the progesterone produced by the ovaries.
The physical environment can also be important for some people to put their mind on sex. Here are a few tips:
Burn a candle or two to make the room smell more sensual
Wear a nice perfume - the sense of smell is located in the temporal lobes of the brain, close to the emotional and memory centres
Soft music, with a theme of love, can make lovemaking more romantic
Sexy lingerie can be a good turn on
Many couple use sex toys to enhance their foreplay
Massage oils can be very pleasant (but it can be hard to get a man to give you a long sensual massage!)
Question: How does menopause affect the sex drive?
Dr Sandra Cabot: The human female is the only creature known to live much longer than her sex glands and reproductive capacity! When the ovaries run out of eggs, production of progesterone ceases completely and oestrogen levels become very low. By the time some women get to menopause, their progesterone levels may only be 20% of the levels they experienced in their youth.
Progesterone has anti-ageing properties and is important for sex drive. It exerts a calming effect and can produce emotional contentment and stability.
Before menopause, the majority of oestrogen is produced by the ovaries. After menopause, when the ovaries are devoid of useful eggs, the vast majority of oestrogen is produced away from our ovaries in our fat tissue.
Interestingly, some women find their libido increases once they have gone through menopause - they no longer have to worry about contraception and do not tend to experience the extreme mood changes which, up to now, have dominated their lives each month.
Question: What is Vulvodynia?
Dr Sandra Cabot: Some women suffer with a chronic or recurrent discomfort in the lips and/or vestibule of their vulva - this problem is called vulvodynia.
It is very uncomfortable and may feel like a dull ache, a burning stinging feeling, a pressure, rawness and an itch - or a combination of all of these sensations. It is usually associated with painful sexual intercourse.
The cause is somewhat mysterious and variable and has been put down to dysfunctional nerve endings or nerve injury.
Many theories have been put forward as to the cause of this nerve pain - the most logical seems to be chronic inflammation in the nerve endings and/or skin of the vulva; in most cases one cannot see this inflammation on physical examination of the vulva; thus it is microscopic.
If you have vulvodynia it is important to see a gynaecologist who specialises in this area - treatment will take time and can be very successful if you are persistent and patient.
Interview by Brooke Hunter