Sometimes your sex life is in troubles, whether or not you want it. He’s hot, he’s sweet, he’s great in bed, but you still can’t enjoy it as much as you want due to your overall mental, physical, and emotional health issues. If that’s your problem, you should start to communicate with your partner, maintain a healthy lifestyle, avail yourself of some of the many excellent self-help materials on the market, and just have fun for those tough times to be weathered.

Enjoying a satisfying sex life

Sex is no doubt one of the most enjoyable things on Earth. It stirs up our emotions, which vary from love, excitement, and tenderness to longing, anxiety, and disappointment. During your several-decade panned sex life, you will encounter all these emotions and many others.

But what is sex, really?

Sex is meant to perpetuate the species. But putting it that simply underestimates the complexity of the human sexual response. Apart from the biochemical forces, your sexuality is shaped by your experiences and expectations. Three main factors to develop and maintain a fulfilling sex life is your understanding of yourself as a sexual being, your thoughts about what constitutes a satisfying sexual connection, and your relationship with your partner.

Talking to your partner

Many couples have a hard time talking about sex even under the best of circumstances. When their sex life is in troubles, their conversation can be halted due to their feelings of hurt, shame, guilt, and resentment. There can’t be a healthy relationship without good communication (in any possible way), hence establishing a dialogue is the first step not only to a better sex life, but also to a closer emotional bond. And here are some tips to help you tackle this sensitive topic:

Find the right time. There are things you share while you both are in bed, and there are also stuff you should talk about somewhere else. It works perfect to tell him what feels good in the middle of lovemaking, but you should wait for a more neutral setting if larger issues need discussing, such as mismatched sexual desire or orgasm troubles.

Avoid criticizing. You should bring out the positives instead of focusing on the negatives. What you are looking for is solutions, not blaming or resentment.

Inform your partner about your body changes. You should let him know what your body is going through. If you have problems with hot flashes or menopause has made your vagina dry, tell him. Don’t just keep silent then he will misinterpret it as as lack of interest. Or if you are a man and have your own problems, be honest to her and show her how to help you through it instead of letting her believe you aren’t attracted to her anymore.

Be honest. You might fake an orgasm thinking that it’s best for his feelings. Watch out, it in fact is a slippery slope. Just be honest and together you too will find a solution. Don’t build up any lies as gradually, it can lead to hurt, and resentment. Also, be free to discuss about potential subjects. For example, if you’re old, what will happen if one passes away? If you’re open and honest to each other now, when it happens, it will be easier and less guilt for the surviving partner later to move on.

Using self-help strategies

Treating sexual problems has never been this easy. If your problems are quite serious, search for revolutionary medications as well as professional sex therapists. But if they are minor, you might be able to solve it yourself by making a few adjustments in your lovemaking style. Here are some things you can try at home.

Educate yourself. Thanks to the Internet, we now can seek help easily online. However, be selective when it comes to which sources to read. Or you can visit your local bookstore, grab some resources that apply to you, and use them to help you and your partner become better informed about the issue. If you find it too hard to talk directly, you and your partner can underline passages that you particularly like and show them to each other.

Give yourself time. Your sex life won’t be as great as you get older. You have to accept that fact. However, you and your partner can still improve your shot at success by finding a quiet, comfortable, interruption-free setting for sex. But due to the physical changes in your body, it will take more time for you to get aroused and reach orgasm. Try to consider it as a chance for a new kind of sexual experience!

Use lubrication. Perimenopause comes with lots of issues, and vaginal dryness is surely one of them! However, you can easily fix it with lubricating liquids and gels. If lubricants don’t work any longer, seek advice from your doctor. Do anything to avoid painful sex as it might snowball into flagging libido and growing relationship tensions.

Maintain physical affection. Even if you’re totally not in the mood for it, try to engage in kissing and cuddling to maintain an emotional and physical bond.

Practice touching. Recommended by sex therapist, touching can help you re-establish physical intimacy without pressure. Consider it as an exercise and search for educational videos or self-help books for better practice. One of the best ways is to ask your partner to touch you the way they like being touched. By doing so, you can get a better sense of how much pressure, from gentle to firm, you should use.

Try different positions. Everyone knows different positions add interests to lovemaking. But not many know they can actually help you overcome sexual problems. For example, increased stimulation to the G-spot in doggy style can help women reach orgasm.

Write down your fantasies. It’s really important to share with your partner your fantasies. Write them down things that turn you on. If you have not shaped up any fantasies on your mind, try to think of an experience or a movie that aroused you and then share it with your partner. This works like magic for people with low desire.

Do Kegel exercises. Working on your pelvic floor muscles will help improve your sexual fitness, for both women and men. To do Kegel, tighten the muscle you use to stop urinating. Hold it for 2 to 3 seconds then release. Try to complete 5 sets a day, 10 reps each set. You can easily do Kegel anywhere, anytime. For more muscle resistance, use vaginal weights. If you do not know how to use them or where to buy yet, seek advice from your doctor or a sex therapist.

Try to relax. Try something soothing such as playing a game, going out for a romantic dinner before having sex. Or you can also do some relaxation techniques such as deep breathing exercises or yoga.

Use a vibrator. You might think of it as a sex toy only but in fact, it offers much more than just that. A vibrator can help us learn about our own sexual response and we can use it to show our partner what we like.

Don’t give up. If you’ve tried all those tips but none of them works, don’t give up your hope yet. You can always visit your doctor who can determine the cause of your sexual problem and may be able to identify effective treatments. They can also help connect you with a sex therapist who can help you explore issues that may be standing in the way of a fulfilling sex life.

Maintaining good health

As said above, your sexual well-being relies much on your overall mental, physical, and emotional health. Therefore, things you do to keep your shape can shape up your sex life too.

Don’t smoke. Smoking has negative effect on blood flow to the penis, clitoris, and vaginal tissues. In addition, female smokers have a tendency to go through menopause two years earlier than their nonsmoking counterparts. If you are looking to quit, try nicotine gum or patches or ask your doctor about the drugs bupropion (Zyban) or varenicline (Chantix).

Use alcohol in moderation. One drink might help some men with erectile dysfunction relax, but heavy use of alcohol will only make things worse. Alcohol dulls the central nervous system, which inhibits sexual reflexes. Large amount of alcohol over a long period can damage the liver, leading to an increase in estrogen production in men. In women, alcohol can trigger compounding menopause problems such as hot flashes and disrupt sleep.

Eat right. Too much junk food leads to high blood cholesterol and obesity—two major risk factors for cardiovascular disease. In addition, being obese can decrease your libido. Gain your libido back, don’t gain weight!

Use it or lose it. During menopause, the estrogen level in your body drops, which makes the vaginal walls lose some of their elasticity. However, this process can be slowed down or even reversed through sexual activity. If intercourse can’t be done, you can also masturbate using a dildo or vibrator for the same results. For men, their penis might lose a portion of the oxygen-rich blood it needs to maintain good sexual functioning if it has not been erected for a long period. Eventually,their penis will lose some ability to expand as something akin to scar tissue develops in muscle cells.

Putting the fun back into sex

Even in the best relationship, couples still lose their interests after a number of years. But you can definitely rekindle the spark with just a little bit of imagination.

Be adventurous. It’s time to try out new locations, new positions, new materials. If you have never had sex in a secluded spot in the woods, book a cabin this weekend. If you never watch erotic films together, go search. Or you can go out rent an X-rated movie, the feeling of doing it alone might already turn you on.

Be sensual. Try to create an environment where you can enjoy sex with all five of your senses. Some silk for your skin, jazz for your ears, the perfumed scent of flowers for your nose, the soft focus of candlelight for your eyes, and the taste of ripe, juicy fruit for your mouth. This heightened sensual awareness will definitely makes you enjoy the sex at its best.

Be playful. Sext him while he’s at work. Leave a naughty note in his pocket. Share a bubble bath together. Be playful. Create a great lead-in to sex!

Be creative. Get out of your boring comfort zone, do something creative, something different! So if you are used to do it on Friday night, now surprise him on Saturday morning instead. Try out new positions, new activities. Add in sex toys or put on sexy lingerie if you have never done it.