Sex And Type 2 Diabetes Risk Perception: Gaps In Research
There is a dearth of research to identify sex-related differences in risk perception of type 2 diabetes onset among college students. Studying whether male and female students perceive type 2 diabetes differently is important because it has been reported that women who have family members or friends with diabetes have a greater perceived risk for the disease, whereas only a family history of diabetes contributes to greater perceived risk for men . If differences in risk perception do exist between male and female college students, these differences must be identified and better understood to develop sex-specific interventions to influence mens and womens risk perception of type 2 diabetes onset.
When To See A Doctor
According to a study published in the September 2010 issue of the journal Diabetes Care, only 19 percent of women and 47 percent of men with diabetes had discussed their sexual health with their doctors.
However, sexual health problems are not inevitable with diabetes. The study also found that a significant number of men and women with diabetes, aged 5785 years, engaged in sexual activity 23 times a week.
People with diabetes who have concerns or questions about their sexual health should contact their endocrinologist or doctor.
Examples of questions to ask include:
- What do I need to know to better manage my diabetes?
- What other health problems do I have that may be affecting my sexual health?
- What medications am I taking that could be affecting my sex life?
A doctor may also recommend seeing a counselor or therapist to help improve self-esteem and overall self-perception. Counseling for couples can also be beneficial.
What Causes Sexual Dysfunction In Men And Women With Diabetes
Cheng: There are a number of factors for women, including reduced lubrication and reduced response due to nerve damage. Poorly controlled diabetes can lead to recurrent urinary tract infections and yeast infections. And low desire can sometimes be attributed to weight gain, depression, and/or anxiety, which are more common in women with diabetes.
Bebb: Men with type 2 diabetes have generally had years of prediabetes. During this state they may develop damage to the small blood vessels of the penis. They also frequently have hypertension and high cholesterol .
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Sex Hormone Differences Between The Sexes
The fact that both sexes make the same steroid hormones in a similar way means that physiological differences are necessarily quantitative in terms of how much androgen is made, and what percentage of that quantity is converted into estrogen. If we focus on testosterone and E2, the two most potent representatives of their classes and the principal hormones synthesized in the gonads, two dramatic differences are evident. The testis makes approximately 7000g of testosterone per day and converts one quarter of 1% into E2, whereas the ovary makes only 300g of testosterone per day, but fully converts half of it into E2. Thus, men make at least 20 times as much testosterone as women do however, the percentage of testosterone that is converted into E2 in a woman is 200 times that in a man. In both sexes testosterone induces the estrogen sulfotransferase , which inactivates E2 in E2 sulfate therefore, the higher the levels of testosterone, the higher the inactivation of E2 in E2 sulfate, thus contributing to the quantitative differences in sex steroids between the sexes .
Sexual Health Issues Affecting Both Men And Women
A common sexual health issue seen in people with type 2 diabetes is a , or loss of a sex drive. This can be frustrating if someone had a thriving libido and satisfying sex life before a type 2 diabetes diagnosis.
Causes of a low libido associated with type 2 diabetes include:
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Role Of Estrogens In Metabolic Target Tissues: A Potential Role In Linking Hypogonadism And Type 2 Diabetes In Men
Taking into account all these positive metabolic effects of estrogens, it can be hypothesized that the hypoestrogenic condition that characterizes hypogonadism in men may participate in producing and/or aggravating T2DM through its impact on triggering metabolic tissues, particularly the adipose tissue.
Sex And Type 2 Diabetes
Is diabetes interfering with your love life? Although issues with sexual functioning can be caused by aging and other medical conditions, men and women with diabetes do report more difficulties in this area. There are several reasonsboth physical and psychologicalwhy this is true.
What Problems Could Diabetes Cause To My Sex Life
It is important to know that if you have high blood sugar levels for a long time then it can lead to serious complications. This can include sexual problems which we call sexual dysfunction.
High blood sugar levels can affect your nerves and blood vessels, which we call neuropathy. This means that they can also affect the ones that supply blood to your sexual organs. If this happens, it means that you’ll have less blood flow into these areas. This can result in your losing some feeling to your genitals. Losing sensation can mean that becoming aroused physically and emotionally, can be harder. For men, it’s called erectile dysfunction, or erectile problems.
Having diabetes can also mean youre more at risk of urinary tract infections , thrush and vaginal dryness.
Sexual problems wont affect everyone with diabetes, but you should know how to reduce your risk of developing these kinds of problems and how to manage them.
B Body Fat Distribution
During puberty, increased accumulation of gluteo-femoral fat promoted by estrogen results in a gynoid shape of premenopausal women .4). Males feature a greater trunk and visceral fat , upper extremity mass, and liver fat compared with females with same age and BMI . Nonetheless, men and women with similar degree of insulin resistance show comparable intraabdominal and liver fat . In an Asian population, women with normal waist circumference and BMI were diagnosed with visceral obesity by computer tomography. This even showed greater cardiometabolic risk in women, in terms of glucose and lipid abnormalities compared with males . However, VAT and age were independent predictors of greater cardiometabolic risk in males, whereas the VAT to subcutaneous fat ratio independently predicted higher risk in females.
Sex differences in fat distribution. MR image showing area between L5 and L4 at the lumbar spine in a male and female young healthy, normal-weight subject of comparable age and BMI and a male and female patient with T2DM of comparable age and BMI . A, Man, 23 years old, BMI 25 kg/m2, VAT from area L2 to L5 216 cm2, SAT 649 cm2, liver fat 1.9%. B, Woman, 19 years old, BMI 24 kg/m2, VAT from area L2 to L5 138 cm2, SAT 807 cm2, liver fat 1.1%. C, Man, 59 years old, BMI 33, VAT from area L2 to L5 901 cm2, sc 879 cm2, liver fat 9.6%. D, Woman, 57 years old, BMI 34, VAT from area L2 to L5 712 cm2, SAT 2158 cm2, liver fat 5.1%.
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Gugu Says That Diabetes Has Affected Every Part Of Her Life Including Her Interest In Sex And
Most men said they were not as yet having any problems about sex, but felt that if they did experience ED it would be a serious worry for them that could well affect their relationship with their partners but would also affect their sense of masculinity. Those men who admitted to having experienced ED at some time said that even though their masculinity was affected it would probably not diminish their long-term relationship with their partners.
Try A Different Time Of Day
If low energy and fatigue are a problem, try having sex at a different time of day when your energy is at its peak. Nighttime may not always be the right time. After a long day, and with the added fatigue that comes with diabetes, the last thing you may have energy for is sex.
Try sex in the mornings or afternoons. Experiment to see what works best for you.
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How Common Are Sexual Problems Among Men And Women With Diabetes Compared To The Average Population
Cheng: Various studies report a wide range of sexual dysfunction in women with type 1 or type 2 diabetesabout 35-70 per cent. Among women who do not have diabetes, the average rate of sexual dysfunction is about 40 per cent.
Bebb: Erectile dysfunction affects approximately 35-45 per cent of men with diabetes. Studies suggest that after 20 years of type 1 diabetes, approximately 50 per cent of men will have ED. In the general population, about five per cent have ED by age 40, and this increases to 15-20 per cent by age 70.
Lower Sex Drive Or Libido
Lots of things can affect how interested you are in having sex. This is is called libido or sex drive and sometimes diabetes can lower your libido. But this isn’t necessarily all down to your diabetes.
Being tired, depressed or and having low self-esteem can all affect how much you feel like having sex. As well as any medication youre taking, or any treatment youve had in the past.
The emotions youre feeling have a big impact too. If youre feeling embarrassed because of your pump or anxious about having a hypo, this can make you feel like you dont want to have sex.
Its not easy coping with all these feelings and emotions. But theres support out there and talking to someone about whats going on can be the first step. Know that youre not alone. Whether its with a partner, friend, counsellor or your healthcare team, its good to talk.
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Why Is A Sexual Life Important For Our Well
Cheng: From a psychological perspective, it brings pleasure and joyand exercise! The emotional aspect of sex impacts relationship and also how you feel about yourselfyour confidence level and self-esteem.
Bebb: Sexual activity is a normal human activity, and the lack of it can decrease quality of life and can also affect the quality and dynamics of the relationship with your partner.
Good Diabetes Health = Good Sex
Taking care of your diabetes is the best sex strategy. Good blood glucose control can prevent or ease sexual issues so you can “do everything you want to do in sex,” Sparling says. “And what better impetus to diabetes control is there, especially if you’re young, than getting to have a good, healthy sex life?”
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Having High Sugar Levels For A Long Period Of Time Can Cause Problems In How You Have Sex Called Sexual Dysfunction
Most people will have sexual problems at some point in their lives, whether they have diabetes or not. And having diabetes doesnt mean you will automatically have a problem. But people with diabetes are more at risk of sexual dysfunction . It’s one of the complications of diabetes, and happens because of high blood sugar levels, as well as high blood pressure and blood fats .
Having high sugar levels for a period of time can damage your blood vessels and nerves, including the ones that supply your penis. This can restrict the amount of blood flowing to your sexual organs, so you can lose some sensation. This could mean you have difficulty getting aroused, both physically and in how you feel.
Sex can be an important part of our lives, but it’s something we still struggle to talk about. Getting the time and support to talk about sexual problems with a healthcare professional is one of your 15 essential healthcare checks. This the care and support youre entitled to, so if youre not getting this type of care and you need it, dont be afraid to ask your healthcare team. Theyre here to help.
Here well take you through some types of sexual problems in men. This information can help you manage any problems you may have now, or reduce your risk of developing them in the future. And if you’re looking for information about sexual problems in women, we’ve got that too.
Essential Sex Tips For Diabetics
What’s going on with your blood sugar can have a huge impact on how you feel between the sheetsand not in a good way. “Medical conditions such as diabetes can cause your sex life to take a plunge,” says Lauren Streicher, MD, an assistant clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine, and author of Slip Sliding Away: A Gynecologist’s Guide to Turning Back the Clock on Your Sex Life. “As a diabetic, you have multiple obstacles for achieving a satisfying sex life that other people don’t have.” The good news is that once you understand how to deal with the symptoms that may be putting a damper on your sex life, you can boost your sexual satisfaction big time. Here’s help:
1. Find some new toys.If sex feels a little less intense lately, diabetes may be to blame. “Diabetics often have decreased blood flow to the vagina because of blood vessel changes, which leads to less arousal and sensation,” says Streicher. “Studies show that diabetics don’t orgasm as easily as others due to vascular changes and nerve damage.” In short: What used to work for you in terms of reaching orgasm may not be working any more, so it’s time to try something new. The quickest way to get the stimulation you need is with a vibrator. “Make sure the model you use offers clitoral stimulation, because it won’t help much to have something hard or overly powerful inside your vagina,” Streicher says. Here are 18 sex toys experts useand love.
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Role Of Sex And Gender On The Development Of Type 2 Diabetes
There is increasing evidence that sex and gender differences influence the epidemiology, pathophysiology, treatment and outcomes of many diseases, including type 2 diabetes . The term sex is used to primarily indicate biological differences and the term gender predominantly describes the psychosocial differences between sexes. Sex differences between women and men include differences in sex hormones and their effects on organ systems. Gender differences arise from sociocultural processes and include different forms of nutrition, life styles or stress or attitudes toward treatments and prevention of diseases. Sex and gender differences are equally important in terms of development, awareness, presentation, diagnosis and therapy, as well as the prevention of T2DM, influencing each other, above all through the impact on obesity. There is a general agreement that obesity is the major risk factor for T2DM in both sexes, as supported by the data of the prevalence patterns of T2DM across regions which resemble those of obesity .
This review focuses on the link between sex hormones and T2DM through the impact that a sex hormone imbalance has on metabolic tissues, particularly on adipose tissue. The sexual dimorphism of androgens in the pathophysiology of T2DM is emphasized.
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Diabetes can be managed through oral medications. In addition to insulin, metformin, which is a sugar-reducing agent, is also a common treatment for diabetes. It is considered a first-line therapy for diabetes treatment and is often added to insulin. It is important to know the risks of taking diabetes medications. Some drugs can be addictive, so you must consult your doctor before taking any medication. Your physician can prescribe you an appropriate treatment plan based on your medical history.
Your doctor will prescribe medication and check your blood glucose levels on a regular basis. Your A1c level will be checked every six months and your cholesterol levels will be tested regularly. Your doctor will also look for any signs of retinopathy, which is damage to the nerves in the eye caused by diabetes. You will also be examined for any foot problems. It is important to see a foot specialist regularly. Your feet should be thoroughly inspected for damage to the nerves.
While the first two types of insulin are the most common treatments, diabetes can be treated in a variety of ways. Your doctor may prescribe medications to control high blood pressure, which can protect the kidneys. Other types of medication include aspirin and other types of anti-platelet drugs. If your doctor is concerned about your blood sugar level, you may need to try a different medication. Some medications can cause side effects. Your treatment will depend on what type of insulin you need.
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Blood Sugar Highs And Lows
You might be wondering “What will happen to my blood sugars when I have sex?”
It’s important to remember that sex is exercise, so it might make your sugars drop. If youve been drinking, depending on when and how much, youre more likely to have a hypo.
But not everyone with diabetes will have hypos. Make sure you check your blood sugars before you have sex. And it’s worth having something sugary nearby just in case, so you can treat a hypo if you need to.
If you use an insulin pump, taking it out before sex might help you to avoid having a hypo. But this doesnt work for everyone.
Some people with diabetes get very nervous about having hypos. We call this hypo anxiety and if this is familiar to you, and it can affect how you feel about sex. If you’ve had hypos in the past then it’s natural to worry about having them again. Talking to your partner about your fears around sex and diabetes might help. They could even help you plan and prepare in case of a hypo.