What Women Should Know About Female Viagra - FemiWave

What Women Should Know About Female Viagra

What does it do and is it worth the investment?

When sexual dysfunction is talked or written about, the vast majority of the time men are the subject. And when men have issues, they are usually related to problems getting or maintaining an erection. But the truth is that women can also have trouble with sexual performance.

Sexual dysfunction in women can stem from a variety of factors, and a common issue is decreased sex drive. It was with this in mind that Addyi – a.k.a “the female Viagra” – was created. Here are some basic facts related to this drug:

What is Addyi exactly?

Addyi is actually the trade name of the drug flibanserin. Originally developed to help people with depression, it is now primarily used to treat women diagnosed with hypersexual desire disorder (HSDD). Women with this condition have almost no desire for sexual activity and as a result, this causes them severe distress.

“Women who have HSDD don’t have fantasies and they don’t desire sex,” said Lauren Streicher, a professor at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. “We know that there’s a hormonal component, and it’s also mediated by neurotransmitters, specifically dopamine and serotonin, and the way that they act in the frontal cortex.”

What does Addyi do?

Though it often gets the title, Addyi shouldn’t be called the female Viagra, says Dr. James Simon, calling the comparison “highly detrimental and unfair.” This is because while Viagra is essentially a “mechanical” intervention – helping direct blood flow to the penis – Addyi focuses on an often-underrated sexual organ: the brain. The drug raises serotonin levels and, as a result, activates sexual desire.

Linking Addyi to Viagra isn’t just inaccurate, but could also be detrimental, Simon added.  “It’s about unrealistic expectations based on Viagra that don’t really apply to women, to women’s sexual health, or to central nervous system drugs,” he said.

While Viagra can work quickly, the same isn’t true for Addyi. For long-term effects, it is supposed to be taken every day. Users typically notice a change in a few weeks.

Does it work?

The early studies of Addyi found that about 10 percent of women had an increase of “sexually satisfying events” compared to those taking a placebo. It’s not a big change, but Simon believes that could still make a difference.

“There’s a misconception that the small increase on Addyi above and beyond the baseline, plus the placebo effect is a small effect,” he said. “It takes women from being distressed and not wanting to have sex to what is described as normal and not being distressed.”

Are there any side effects?

Side effects from Addyi are similar to those from antidepressants. These include nausea, dry mouth, dizziness, and insomnia. There is also a higher risk of fainting, which is why users are not supposed to drink alcohol when they take it.

Another solution

While Addyi focuses on the neurochemical side of sex for women, other aspects can’t be forgotten. Often, a lack of sexual desire in women or impaired ability to have sex is related to issues such as menopause, childbirth, diabetes, or vaginal dryness, among other factors, which are things Addyi won’t address.

Fortunately, there is a solution that addresses some of the physical causes of reduced sexual performance in women: FemiWave™. This is a non-invasive procedure that uses low-intensity sound waves to break up plaque in blood vessels and stimulate the growth of new ones. Increased blood flow can help restore sensitivity to the vagina, increase natural lubrication, and aid in arousal.

There are no known side effects and results are typically seen after a few in-office, outpatient sessions. To find out if FemiWave is right for you, get in touch to schedule an appointment with a provider near you.

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