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What happens if a woman takes Viagra for low sex drive?

Low sexual desire is something that many women find themselves facing at some or the other stage in their life. While Viagra proves to be helpful for men, we find out if Flibanserin or ‘female Viagra’ is as helpful for women.
Viagra for low sex drive in women
Viagra has always been a drug that has shown visible results in men’s sexual activities. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock
Anjuri Nayar Singh Published: 19 Oct 2023, 08:15 pm IST
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Many women, at some point in their lives, experience low sex drive. This can be because of a range of factors such as stress, lifestyle, pregnancy and the birth of a child. Several studies that have been conducted in the past show that sexual desire is inversely proportional to age. In fact, studies suggest that poor health, age-related or otherwise, can be also be factors for low sexual desire. Many men resort to taking Viagra, an oral medication mainly known for helping men with erectile dysfunction, to help them with their sex drive. If you happen to find yourself in this phase of life and have been wondering if there is a female version of Viagra, we are here to tell you more about it.

What is low sex drive?

According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fifth edition (DSM-5), female sexual interest/arousal disorder (FSIAD) is a clinical disorder where women experience reduced sexual interest. The symptoms of this disorder include absence or reduction of interest in sexual activities including erotic thoughts and fantasies, not responding to initiation of sexual activity as well as no sexual excitement or pleasure during sexual activity. The patient must be experiencing this for at least six months and these symptoms must be causing her significant distress. Also, the reason for these should not be a relationship issue or any other stress-related problems or mental disorders.

Does Viagra help women?

Viagra has always been a drug that has shown visible results in men’s sexual activities. However, how it performs in women remains an unanswered question. Dr. Meghana Reddy Jetty says, “In men, Viagra works by boosting blood flow to the penis by dilating the blood vessels which makes it easier to get and maintain an erection. But it is geared towards improving men’s sexual performance and doesn’t directly deal with women’s arousal.”

Therefore, there is not much research to tell exactly how beneficial Viagra is for women suffering from sexual dysfunction. “It could improve blood flow to the genital area, possibly enhancing sensitivity, arousal, and the ability to reach orgasm,” adds Jetty. Studies on Viagra’s effectiveness in women have had mixed results, and there’s no set standard dosage for women.

Is there a special version of Viagra made for women?

The drug Flibanserin is often referred to as the ‘female Viagra’ or the ‘pink pill’ and it’s taken to treat the problem of low sexual drive in women. The drug was approved by Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2015 to specifically treat female sexual interest/arousal disorder (FSIAD) in women who are premenopausal. This drug is not taken to solve issues related to stress or age-related factors. Also, Dr Jetty explains that, studies have shown that it offers only modest improvements and may be as good as a placebo. The same study shows that it comes with side effects like:
• Dizziness
• Fainting
• Sleepiness
• Feeling sick (nausea)
• Feeling tired (fatigue)

Viagra in women
Flibanserin, or ‘female Viagra’ or the ‘pink pill’ is taken to treat the problem of low sexual drive in women.

What is the right Viagra dosage for women?

There are multiple studies that have been conducted to judge the effectiveness of Viagra in women, and these results have been mixed. So, there’s no set standard dosage that can be prescribed for women off the counter. “It is crucial for women facing sexual dysfunction to consult with a healthcare professional. They can help figure out the best treatment and dosage based on your unique situation and health history,” says Dr Jetty.

The last word

Low sexual drive or issues of sexual dysfunction happen in many women and there can be complex issues behind this. Many factors may have contributed to this situation and they need to be tackled differently. “If you’re going through this, especially if you have underlying chronic conditions like diabetes, hypertension, or heart disease, it’s advisable to consult the physician first. They can do a thorough evaluation, possibly involving discussions with a psychologist, to pinpoint the causes of your sexual dysfunction and figure out the best treatment options,” advises Dr Jetty.

While discussing with your doctor, make sure to be as honest as possible. The doctor may conduct an exam and also enquire about your medical history. Hormone levels through blood tests may also be checked to rule out any physical health-related factors.

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About the Author

Anjuri Nayar Singh has over 12 years of experience in writing for various topics including lifestyle, films, television and OTT. She also writes on art and culture, education and human interest stories. ...Read More

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