Sign up for 10% off your first purchase.

Your cart

Your cart is empty

Discover yourself.

Sex and antidepressants

Sex and antidepressants

Chances are, you’ve heard something about the relationship between sex and antidepressants. While it's true that certain medications for depression and anxiety can indeed impact your sexual desire, the story doesn't end there. There's a whole lot more to unpack, and it's worth paying attention to. Let’s delve into the complex relationship between the two, and dispel a few crucial myths along the way.

Before we start on antidepressants, it’s important to talk about what it is to have a “healthy libido”. Namely, there’s no such thing. Libido is an inherently personal aspect of the human experience, varying greatly from one person to another. There’s no universal standard that defines the ‘right’ amount of sex or desire between two (or more) totally unique individuals. Could certain medications influence what is considered normal libido for you? Absolutely. However, so can factors like age, mental health, relationship status, stress, menstrual cycle phase, changes in environment, or diet. Virtually anything can have an impact. Our sexual desires and needs are constantly in flux, influenced by a multitude of factors, and that's perfectly normal.

In the context of managing depression and anxiety with medication, recognising these wide range of experiences becomes particularly important. Antidepressants, especially selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), have been known to impact sexual function for some people. This may present as a change in libido, arousal difficulties, delayed orgasm, or other symptoms. However, the interpretation of these changes is deeply subjective, influenced by personal expectations, societal norms, and individual experiences of sexuality. 

For individuals experiencing libido changes due to these medications, here are some strategies to manage potential side effects:

  • Adjusting medication dosage. Many people start on a certain dosage to help them navigate chapters of their life, and are able to effectively wean off when ready. You may find a lower dose reduces the sexual side effects while maintaining the main benefits of the antidepressant. 
  • Switching antidepressants. Some SSRIs and SNRIS have lower risks of sexual side effects than others, and switching to one of these may be beneficial if you feel impacted by the side effects of one. Consult your healthcare professional before changing any medications. 
  • Augmentation with other medications. Adding medications specifically to address sexual side effects can be an option. You can talk to a medical professional about this, too. 
  • Non-medical approaches. Psychotherapy, lifestyle changes, and focusing on intimacy or different types of sex can also support sexual well-being. 

It’s important to remember that depression and anxiety themselves often significantly reduce sexual desire, and for some, medicinal treatment may actually restore your libido to its former level. The goal is to find a balance that respects your mental and sexual health needs, without adhering to unrealistic standards of what libido should be and allowing for a more compassionate approach to treatment and well-being. Take your time, communicate openly, explore your options and prioritise your mental health. The rest will come later.

Previous post
Next post

Journey into pleasure

Vibes in 3 colours

Essensual Vibe

$149.95
Unit price
per 
Lube

Essensual Lube

$29.95
Unit price
per 
Essensual Melt

Essensual Melt

from $34.95

Unit price
per 
Oil

Essensual Oil

$49.95
Unit price
per 

More sex education

Everything you need to know about going to sex therapy

Everything you need to know about going to sex therapy

So, you’re thinking about booking a session with a sex therapist but not sure what it’s all about, who to see and what to expect?

Read more
5 things you didn’t know about the clitoris

5 things you didn’t know about the clitoris

Ah, the wonderful, mysterious clitoris. The vulva’s pleasure centre - a treasure that many explorers find impossible to find (it’s literally right there in plain sight). While we are starting...

Read more
Bringing food into the bedroom

Bringing food into the bedroom

Moist, sensual, mouth-watering, orgasmic - we could just as easily be describing a decadent chocolate cake as a session in the bedroom. Food and sex are just about the two...

Read more
3 spooky ghost(ing) stories

3 spooky ghost(ing) stories

Nothing is scarier than a ghost. And we’re not talking about the floating white sheet that says ‘boo’. Ghosting is loosely defined as ‘abruptly ending communication with someone without explanation’,...

Read more
The pleasures of piss play

The pleasures of piss play

Let's dive into the (quietly) popular world of urolagnia, also known as “piss play”, “watersports”, or “golden shower”, or simply: the inclination to derive sexual excitement from the idea of...

Read more
Sex and antidepressants

Sex and antidepressants

Chances are, you’ve heard something about the relationship between sex and antidepressants. While it's true that certain medications for depression and anxiety can indeed impact your sexual desire, the story...

Read more