Taking the pill does not lower sexual desire, according to new research published in The Journal of Sexual Medicine.
Since the pill became widely used in the early 1970s, rumours have spread that oral contraceptives put a cap on female sexual desire. However the study, which surveyed more than 900 women in long-term relationships, indicates that contextual factors such as age and relationship status are the key influences on sex drive.
Researchers looked at oral hormonal, other hormonal and non-hormonal contraceptives and measured libido for women by themselves and with their partner. Although differences were found between participants who took different forms of contraceptives – the key factor impacting sexual desire appeared to be relationship length and age.
“Sometimes women are looking for something to explain changes in their sexual desire, which is not fixed throughout her life,” noted Dr Kristen Mark, one of the key researchers, “[and]the message that hormonal pills decrease desire is really prevalent.”.
Studies have shown that about one third of women will experience at least one period in the lifetime of little or no sexual desire. Dr Mark and other researchers hope that their study assists in addressing periods of low desire:“[b]y continuing to unravel the mysteries behind the inaccurate anecdotes out there, I hope we can help women understand — and address — changes in their sexual desire.
Written by guest writer: Jarryd Bartle
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