Welcome to Scribd, the world's digital library. Read, publish, and share books and documents. See more
Download
Standard view
Full view
of .
Look up keyword
Like this
0Activity
0 of .
Results for:
No results containing your search query
P. 1
F31 Sex After Stroke, Version 01-06-2010

F31 Sex After Stroke, Version 01-06-2010

Ratings: (0)|Views: 1|Likes:
Published by mdarif4pt

More info:

Published by: mdarif4pt on Nov 26, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

Availability:

Read on Scribd mobile: iPhone, iPad and Android.
download as PDF, TXT or read online from Scribd
See more
See less

05/12/2014

pdf

text

original

 
Makinglove
is an
important
part of manyrelationships, whatever your
age
. It can bean important way of 
expressinglove
foreach other,
strengthening
your
relationship
and is also a good way of getting
exercise
.However, sex can be a
difficult
or
embarrassing
subject to
talk
about, andproblems may be overlooked by doctors.All
healthprofessionals
whoworkwithstrokeshould
understand
theseissuesand
discuss
sexandrelationshipswithyou,ifyouwantto.Youmightalsofindithelpstotalktosomeonewho
specialises
insexualandemotionaldifficulties.Some
GPsurgeries
havetheirown
counsellor
orcan
refer
youtoan
expert
insexualissues.Some
charities
offersex
therapy 
oradviceonsexualissues(see‘Usefulorganisations’onpage5).
What causes sexualdifficulties after stroke?
A number of reasons may lead to you havingdificulties with sex after a stroke, including
psychological
and emotional changes,
relationshipdifficulties
, and
physical
problems. Often sexual problems are causedby a
combination
of several factors.
Psychological and emotional changesEmotional
and
sexual difficulties
areclosely
interwoven
. It’s not unusual to feel
low
or
depressed
after a stroke and thisis often accompanied by a loss of interestin sex. Strokes can change your life inmany ways, perhaps bringing a
loss ofindependence
or
changed relationships
with family and friends, and coping withthese changes can lead to
depression
.In addition, the stroke may have
damaged
centres in the
brain
which control howyou feel, leading to depression. For moreinformation about depression see ourfactsheet
F10 Psychological effects of stroke
.
Anxiety 
isalsocommonafterstroke,andalackofinformationcanaddtoyourworries.Acommonfearisthatsexwillraise
bloodpressure
and
causeanotherstroke
.Whileitistruethatbloodpressurecanriseatthetimeoforgasm,
youarenomorelikelytohaveastrokewhilemakinglovethanatanyothertime
.Infact,anactivesexlifecanhelpkeepyouhealthy.Onevery
rareexception
tothiswouldbeifyouhavehadastrokeduetobleedingfromaweakpointinanartery(an‘
aneurysm
’)andthishad
notbeen
The Stroke Association (June 2010) 1
Sex after stroke
STROKE HELPLINE 0303 3033 100
FACTSHEET 31
Sexualdifficultiesafterstrokecanbetheresultofmanyfactors,includingpsychologicalchanges(suchaslowmood)andphysicalproblems(suchasweaknessorparalysis).Oftenalittleinformationandreassurancecanhelpovercometheseissues,butspecialisthelpisalsoavailable.Thisfactsheetlooksatwhatcanleadtosexualproblemsafterstrokeandwhathelpisavailable.
 
repaired
(‘clipped’).However,thiswillalmostalwaysbeoperatedonstraightaway.Ifyouareconcerned,speaktoyour
doctor
.Almostcertainlytheywillbeableto
reassure
youanddiscussyourconcerns.In some
rare
cases,
sexual desire
can
increase
after stroke and someone may
lose
their inhibitions about inappropriatesexual behaviour. This can be
upsetting
and
embarrassing
for people aroundthem. This problem needs
special medicalattention
and partners should not try todeal with it alone. Remember that theperson is
not aware
that there is
anythingwrong
with their behaviour and it is thestroke that is causing them to act in this way.
Relationships
The effect of a stroke on you and your partnercan be life-changing, and this may put a
strain
on your
relationship
. Not only do youboth have to
adapt
your lives to deal with anydisabilities, but if your partner is
caring
foryou
physically 
, it may be more difficult foreither, or both of you to feel sexual. If youneed your partner’s help with
personalcare
and
hygiene
, you may see each otherdifferently, which can put you off physicalintimacy.
Stroke
can affect the way you
seeyourself
and it may take time before you canview yourself as
sexuallyattractive
again.Also, sexual problems can be a self-fulfillingprophecy – if you expect them, they canbecome more likely to happen.Many people have difficulty
controlling
the
expression
of 
emotion
after stroke. Youmay feel
short-tempered
or
irritable
andthis can be a
strain
on your relationship withyour partner which can affect your sex life.
Communication
with your partner canbecome difficult, leading to feelings of 
frustration
and
anger
, which can affect yourrelationship and make you less interested inmaking love.
Tension
and
resentment
canbuild up between you, and
getinthewa
of 
yoursexualfeelings
for each other.It may be that
one of you would like tohave sex
but the other wouldn’t. This couldbecome a source of 
tension
if not resolved.If you are
not in a relationship
, you mayfind it
more difficult
to deal with the issueof sexual problems after stroke. Starting newrelationships is hard enough for anyone, butespecially so if a stroke has left you with
physical effects
, such as
mobility 
or
speech
problems. Because a strokecan affect your
image of yourself
, your
confidence
and
self-esteem
, you may feelunable to approach anyone. You may alsofeel
embarrassed
about raising the issuewhen you are first getting to know someone.
Physical problemsPhysical
difficulties caused by stroke suchas
weakness
or
spasticity 
(musclestiffness), may restrict how you move andhow you can position yourself during sex.You may be
less sensitive
if the stroke hasaffected your sensation. You might alsoexperience
pain
after stroke and this canmake sex uncomfortable.Feeling
tired
isaverycommonproblemafterstroke.Althoughthisinitialtirednesswilloftenimprove,
physicallimitations
resultingfromyourstrokecanmeanthatsimple
daily activities
takemuchmoreoutofyouthantheyusedto.Consequently,youmayfeeltoo
FACTSHEET 31 Sex after stroke2 The Stroke Association (June 2010)
 
tired
forsomeofthe
activities
youusedtoenjoy–including
sex
.Problemswith
continence
maybeasourceof 
fear
or
embarrassment
afterstrokeandmayleadtoavoidingsexualactivity.Also,ifyouneedanindwelling
catheter
,thismaycausepracticaldifficulties.Sometimes,strokecancausean
imbalance
of 
hormones
,leadingtoawiderangeosexualdifficultiesincludingdifficultygettingan
erection
inmenorlowsexual
desire
inwomen.Thismayhappenwhenastrokeaffectspartsofthebrainwhichcontrolyourhormones,calledthe
pituitarygland
and
hypothalamus
.
Medications
forhighbloodpressure,depressionandepilepsyareknowntohave
sideeffects
thatmayaffectyoursexlife,includingerectiledysfunction,decreaseddesireanddifficultyreachingorgasm.Apartfromthedirecteffectofstroke,other
underlyingconditions
thatyoumayhave(suchas
diabetes
,
epilepsy 
and
cardiovasculardisease
)canalsocauseproblemssuchasdecreaseddesire,difficultyreachingorgasm,troublegettinganerectioninmen,orreducedvaginallubricationinwomen.Formoreinformationabouttheseissues,seefactsheets
F33 Physical effects of stroke, F30Pain after stroke, F18 Tiredness after stroke
and
F12 Continence problems after stroke.
Whathelpisavailable?
The first step in dealing with any sexualproblems is to
talk
about them. This isn’talways easy and you may find it difficult or
embarrassing
to talk about issues such aslack of desire or arousal, or the inability toreach orgasm or get an erection. However,all these can
affect anyone at any time
–not just people who have had a stroke.
Help with psychologicalor emotional difficulties
If you are feeling low or depressed, talk toyour
doctor
. Depression can happen toanyone and does not indicate that you areweak or unable to deal with things. It mayhelp to speak to a
professional
such as a
counsellor
. Alternatively, treatment withantidepressant
medication
can be veryeffective. However, some of the medicationsthemselves can cause
problems
with
sexual desire
and
performance
. Thereare many different drugs available so ask your doctor to prescribe a different drug if you experience this side effect.Few people feel like sex when they are
tenseandanxious
, so it’s worth giving yourself 
time
to get in the mood beforehand. Choosea time when you are both
relaxed
and canbe sure you won’t be
interrupted
Avoid largemeals or too much alcohol. This can affect aman’s ability to get and maintain an erectionand can make you feel sleepy.Above all, remember
sex is not aperformance
. You don’t have to ‘succeed’or ‘fail’ – and
it doesn’t always happenperfectly 
every time. And remember thereare many ways to
express your feelings
and be
close
to another person. You couldstart by getting to know your partnerphysically again without attempting toreach orgasm.
Penetration
is not the onlyway to have a satisfying sex life. All
fivesenses
can be very sensual. Most peopleget pleasure from
touching
,
kissing
,
cuddling
and
massage
.
FACTSHEET 31 Sex after strokeThe Stroke Association (June 2010) 3

You're Reading a Free Preview

Download
scribd
/*********** DO NOT ALTER ANYTHING BELOW THIS LINE ! ************/ var s_code=s.t();if(s_code)document.write(s_code)//-->