How Hormones Affect Our Sexual Pleasure

hormones for sexual pleasure

Hormones for sexual pleasure

A healthy experience of sexuality, which brings us pleasure and subsequently well-being, is the main mechanism that our body has to balance our nervous system. Specifically, it balances our vegetative nervous system, responsible for regulating non-voluntary functions, such as breathing, digestion, circulation or hormonal secretion.

It is very important to talk about two hormones that are responsible for providing us with the best sensations that our body needs to exist: dopamine and serotonin are the hormones of pleasure. We produce them in quantity when we do an activity that we like a lot, for example dancing, listening to music, eating something we love and practising sex! It is shown that having an orgasm is an event that produces one of the greatest secretions of dopamine in our body.

What effects do these hormones have on us?

Dopamine is released when we feel pleasure and is essential in our body: Dopamine is in charge of giving us that supreme feeling of pleasure during the activity we do. It increases the ability to concentrate and fine motility of our movements, making us more precise and accurate.  It also increases our motivation, the desire to do and to get going.

Serotonin is the hormone that is released later; it is the hormone of well-being, of pleasure for having done something enjoyable. Serotonin helps regulate mood and sleep, so when people don’t produce enough, they can feel depressed. Since it increases during sexual activities, it can generate feelings of happiness and peace, improve mood, reduce stress, and perhaps even improve memory.

There may be a link between serotonin and depression. If so, it is not clear to what extent low serotonin levels contribute to depression. Medications that alter serotonin levels are used to treat depression, nausea, and migraine.

This balance of the dopamine-serotonin is regulated mainly by practice and a healthy experience of our sexuality. Sex balances us on a social, somatic and emotional level.

Increasing your Serotonin levels

There are other ways to increase serotonin levels in the body.  Firstly, moderate exposure to the sun’s rays is necessary for our body to have good levels of vitamin D. This vitamin is necessary to help us overcome states of depression and part of this is by causing serotonin levels to skyrocket and increase our feeling of happiness. Going out in the sun is the best pleasant method. However, during the winter, you can boost the presence of serotonin with a sun lamp. A sun lamp, also called light therapy box, mimics natural outdoor light. Secondly, regular physical activity, such as walking or any sport activities can help to regulate hormones. In addition, a healthy diet, that includes food that due to their nutritional components, favour and enhance brain chemistry, are capable of alleviating the symptoms associated with depression, and also, improving our mood. 

Sexual dysfunction

When there is a sexual dysfunction such as dyspareunia, lack of excitation, difficulty reaching orgasm, there may be an interruption in the secretion of these two hormones and they can create negative feelings during and after sexual practice. For that reason if sex produces pain, or you do not find it pleasureable, there are health professionals who can help you, such as sexual psychologists, who can help you on a cognitive level and physiosexologists who can help you with organic disfunctions.

If you would like more information on how physiotherapy can help restore and enhance your erotic function please email me or visit the Physiosexology page.

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Physiosexology: Physiotherapy for Sexual Dysfunctions

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