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Updated 08 October 2013

Too stressed for sex?

Your work deadlines are looming, your child’s teacher has called you in, and your bank account is empty.

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Your work deadlines are looming, your child’s teacher has called you in, and your bank account is empty. These stresses may seem to have nothing to do with delicious, exciting sex, but they do accompany you into the bedroom – and can put a damper on the fun.

Stress drains your energy and occupies your brain with irritation instead of seduction. When you should be delighting in the feel of your lover’s lips on your skin, you start wondering instead if you’ve had a reply to your email.

There’s a physical reason why stress can put a damper on your lust. Stress reduces the level of the hormone testosterone, which is associated with sex drive in both men and women. Adrenaline, another hormone influenced by stress, can result in blood flow being directed from the genitals to more crucial areas. “Hey, what’s more crucial than my genitals?” you may ask, especially when you have a lovely, willing partner looking at you in that sexy way.

Don’t let sex – or the lack of it – become yet another stressor. Take your time to unwind after work, talk through what bothers you, and then relax with a bath, a walk, a massage – whatever makes you feel human again. And above, don’t allow your computer or phone past the bedroom door.

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