No mood and no time: busy city life blamed for sexual dysfunction in Hong Kong women

A third of women polled by Family Planning Association suffer from disorders such as low libido and pain during sex; but bigger proportion of infertility issues related to men

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 29 November, 2016, 9:09pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 29 November, 2016, 10:58pm

One-third of women who sought consultation for infertility issues were found to suffer from female sexual dysfunction, with the busy pace of urban life partly to blame, according to a study by the Family Planning Association.

But in general, only 6 per cent of infertility cases seen by the association since 2009 were related to female problems. Some 12 per cent were due to circumstances in males that affected sex drive or reproductive health, such as drinking, smoking, over-exercising, or wearing tight pants, which may affect sperm count.

“There should be better awareness of psychosexual problems in subfertile patients, and sex counselling and therapy should be incorporated in treatment programmes,” Dr Sue Lo, the association’s senior doctor, said.

Results from a poll of 159 women who visited the association’s subfertility clinics from August 2012 and April 2013 show that 32.5 per cent suffered from sexual dysfunction.

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The average age of the women polled was 32.9 years and the median duration of infertility was 22 months, with 92 per cent of them having primary infertility, referring to the inability to get pregnant after at least a year of having sex without birth control.

Some 33 per cent of sufferers complained of inability to achieve orgasm, followed by 22 per cent with disorders pertaining to lubrication during sex, and 19 per cent with arousal disorder.

Close to 16 per cent said they had a low libido, while 15 per cent complained of pain during sex.

Lo said there was no significant correlation found between female sexual dysfunction and demographic variables such as age, years of marriage, education level, number of children, disease and medical history. Busy urban life, resulting in little time and mood for sex, was possibly the main culprit.

This year marks the 66th anniversary of the association, known for birth control campaigns through the years, especially its “two is enough” slogan. The tone changed in the recent decade when low birth rates hit. In 2015, the association ran a TV commercial urging Hongkongers to have as many kids as they saw fit.