Why should I consider sex therapy?

Jan L. Shifren, MD
Reproductive Endocrinology
Sexual problems are nearly always intertwined with psychological and relationship issues. As a result, treating the physical problem (if one is present) is only half the job. If sexual issues persist for any length of time, performance anxiety, anger, frustration, low self-esteem, lack of physical affection between you and your partner, and a sense of hopelessness can further harm your sex life. So can a tendency to blame yourself or your partner for the problem. Most people need help repairing the emotional distance created by the problem before they can regain a healthy sexual relationship.

Licensed sex therapists are particularly well suited to this task. Although they're qualified to understand the same broad emotional issues as individual or couples therapists, sex therapists have advanced training in addressing specific sexual problems, and they use a more targeted approach. Initially, underlying personal dilemmas and relationship conflicts are addressed mainly in the context of your sexual problems. As a result, sex therapy will probably return you to sexual functioning sooner than traditional counseling. However, as the sexual issue is being resolved, many people choose to continue working with the sex therapist to tackle deeper personal and relationship issues.

Continue Learning about Sex and Relationships

How to Talk to Your Partner About Low Sex Drive
How to Talk to Your Partner About Low Sex Drive
Do you ever daydream about how exciting sex used to be with your partner? If you're missing the "good old days" filled with fun, spur-of-the-moment en...
Read More
How does sleep apnea affect testosterone and sexual function?
Dr. Michael Breus, PhDDr. Michael Breus, PhD
There’s strong evidence of a relationship between testosterone and sleep-disordered breathing, i...
More Answers
10 Best Cities for Sex
10 Best Cities for Sex10 Best Cities for Sex10 Best Cities for Sex10 Best Cities for Sex
Find out where men and women are really satisfied.
Start Slideshow
How Long Does Sexual Intercourse Usually Last?
How Long Does Sexual Intercourse Usually Last?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.