Drug Abuse and Your Sex Drive
Drug abuse comes with many myths and misconceptions, and one of those is that certain drugs can act as aphrodisiacs. In reality, studies suggest that illicit drugs have a negative effect on the male sex drive, which can lead to a host of other problems related to sexual performance. The physical problems from drug abuse commonly co-occur with psychological problems as well.
The Effect of Drug Abuse on Your Sex Drive
A 2009 study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine reported that 38.6 percent of abusers reported having a lowered sex drive associated with drug abuse. This statistic was seen more frequently among heroin users. The average age of men in the study was around 33 years of age. Prescription drug abuse is also a problem associated with antidepressants, which increase serotonin but appear to decrease the libido.
A low libido or decreased sex drive is characterized by a lack of sexual desire. Even if sex is something you previously enjoyed, drug abuse can affect your body in such a way that you no longer feel interested in or motivated for sex. For many men, this can lead to other problems with self-esteem, relationships, and mental health.
The Ripple Effect of a Low Sex Drive
A low sex drive is sometimes linked to anxiety. Men who struggle with sexual function due to drug abuse may feel anxious about their sexual performance, such as an inability to muster up enthusiasm for sex. Sexual anxiety may come with stress, worry, tightness in the chest, or even obsessive thinking. These behaviors can have a domino effect into other aspects of your life, and you may start to feel increased anxiety about your work or family life too.
Some men find themselves experiencing depression due to a low libido. You may find yourself withdrawing from your partner, friends, family, or colleagues. Self-confidence can plummet because you’re no longer able to perform sexually the way you once did. Depression is a serious disorder, and is often associated with the tendency to self-medicate with substances. So, depression can actually perpetuate drug abuse in some people.
Although these potential side effects may sound frightening, they can be helped with treatment. Recovery from drug abuse is possible, and there are trained professionals who can help you achieve your goals of sobriety and health. Without treatment, a low sex drive can continue to founder, and the symptoms can worsen. There is no shame in seeking treatment for drug abuse; on the contrary, it is a sign that you value yourself – and your health.
If you or someone you love is suffering from the effects of alcohol abuse, substance addiction or any other type of addiction, please call us today. Our addiction treatment counselors can help you deal with physical, emotional and psychological consequences of drug and alcohol abuse. A substance abuse treatment program is effective, safe and has helped many men reclaim their lives. Destination Hope is a full service drug, alcohol and dual diagnosis treatment facility in Florida for men suffering from substance abuse and mental health issues.