Diabetes is a condition in which there is excessive production of glucose in the blood. If undetected or not controlled, diabetes can cause complications both in the short term (including increased risk of infections) and long term.
If undetected or poorly controlled, diabetes can cause blindness, kidney failure, and nerve damage,reduced blood circulation that may lead to lower limb amputation, and can increase the chance of cardiovascular disease (heart attack and stroke).
Men with diabetes also have a higher chance of developing sexual and reproductive health problems including:
- Erectile dysfunction
- Androgen (or testosterone) deficiency
- Low libido (sexual desire)
Type 2 diabetes is more prevalent in women than in men, while both genders are affected equally by type 1 diabetes. Women with uncontrolled diabetes often face problems like
- Decreased libido
- Decreased vaginal lubrication
- Problems reaching orgasm and painful sexual intercourse
- Urinary Problems
It is hence important that Diabetes can directly affect the functioning of reproductive and sexual health in affected individuals. Healthcare professionals need to have an understanding of how diabetes affects women's reproductive health to provide appropriate advice, thereby empowering women, their partners and families to make appropriate decisions.
It is highly recommended to seek advice from your physician regarding optimal blood sugar management in addition to sexual counseling and reproductive counseling for a healthy life.