Get frisky: eat, play, make love

If you could use a little more action in the sack, follow Fransiska Green’s expert tips for bringing sexy back.

WHY does sex make us competitive? When the statistics relate to weight, height, IQ or running, your stats will be higher or lower than those of the woman sitting next to you.

Yet when it comes to how often you get physical with your man, it’s easy to feel anxious if you’re not hitting the averages.

A survey conducted by Durex found that married couples have less sex than those who are dating — with 16% of dating couples doing it once, or less than once, a week compared to 35% of married couples — which probably indicates that as couples spend more time together their frequency of sex falls.

So, does it mean you have a problem if you’re not meeting the average?

Not necessarily — no matter what the research tells us, sexually there’s no such thing as normal.

“Forget the averages and, instead, focus on how you feel about your sex life,” says sex therapist, Dr Ian Kerner.

“If you feel as though you want to do it more often, but it’s just not happening, that’s an issue you can address.”

Read on to pinpoint the reasons your sex life might be flagging and how you can give it a boost.

The routine rut:

Like a car-navigation system, your man seeks out the quickest and easiest route to orgasm.

Trouble is, once he’s found it, he’ll always use the same path.

“Both men and women fall into this trap,” says Dr Kerner.

“But the problem is that sticking to what you know works is boring.

If it were only about the orgasm, we’d all just stick to masturbating — part of the fun of having sex is that the road to orgasm isn’t a straight path, it involves an element of surprise, too.’

Solve it:

Do it anywhere but the bedroom.

“Being in new surroundings forces you to approach sex from a new angle,” says Dr Kerner.

“Try it in the kitchen, in the shower or, if you really want to force yourselves into some new positions, try a cramped space.”

The busy schedule:

You’ve worked hard all day, hit the gym, made dinner, maybe even done the children’s homework with them, and now the idea of sex seems ... well, like more hard work you could do without.

“When energy levels are low and you’re mentally ‘busy’, it can be hard to relax enough to get aroused for sex,” says Dr Kerner.

“But sex works as a great relaxant, so it’s worth making the effort.”

Solve it:

Schedule sex just as you would any other event in your week.

“It sounds unromantic, but if you’re someone who lives by their calendar, it’s essential,” says Dr Kerner.

“Sex, like dinner, meetings and after-school clubs, needs to be allotted its own time and place.”

To ensure your scheduled sex still feels romantic, create an erotic atmosphere.

“Start with massages or a warm bath to relax, and use soft lighting and music to get in the mood,” Dr Kerner says.

The waning passion:

You couldn’t get too much of each other when you first met, but now? You’re not really bothered.

“At the beginning of a relationship, your body is alive with a cocktail of love chemicals that make you want to tear each other’s clothes off,” says Dr Kerner.

“But, in the long-term, your body slows the production of those chemicals. So, if sexual attraction was the only thing keeping you together, you’ll find yourself questioning the relationship.”

Solve it:

“If you recently started or stopped taking oral contraceptives, this can affect your attraction to your man,” says Dr Kerner.

“So, before you write him off, try going back to the same method of contraception you were using at the start of the relationship. It may be that your altered hormone levels are contributing to your lack of lust.”

The low libido:

If sex rarely crosses your mind, and feels like just another task on your never-ending to-do list, it could be that your libido is at fault.

“If you don’t even feel the need to masturbate, it indicates that your lack of desire for sex isn’t about your partner, but rather about you,” says Dr Kerner.

“It could be down to fatigue, depression, medication, hormonal changes as a result of having a baby, or there may be a psychological issue at play.”

Solve it:

See your doctor to assess the problem.

“A lack of sexual desire can be a result of a medical condition — anaemia or diabetes, for example — that needs treatment,” says Dr Kerner.

“Or, it could be a side-effect of medication — tranquillisers, for example — that you’re taking. Fatigue is a common cause of lack of desire for sex and is something you should address, as it’s likely to affect all areas of your life, not just sex.”

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