How intimacy affects your health and well-being

Healthy relationship = healthy life

Written by Justine Kercher
Whether you realize it or not, your relationship can affect your overall health. That argument you had or that stressful situation you can’t seem to move past can wear you down mentally and physically. Two of the most important factors of all relationships are sex and intimacy. The closer and stronger your bond is with your partner, the easier it will be to navigate the obstacles you face as a couple. 
However, a lack of physical and emotional intimacy can potentially result in mental and physical strain. Keep reading to learn how intimacy can affect your well-being.

It affects your ability to trust

Trust is essential in every relationship and without it, it’s hard to have a healthy union. When one person in the relationship seems like they’re pulling away physically or mentally, it can cause the other person to doubt themself. Self-doubt is never good and sometimes our minds are our own worst enemies. You may begin to attribute lack of intimacy or sex to things like cheating or falling out of love, when that may not be the case.

Try to avoid going down this path of doubt and mistrust by giving your significant other the chance to explain themselves. Feeling like you can't trust your partner can influence you to lash out or accuse them of things without precedence. Before you do this, talk to your significant other about why things have been so distant between you two. Tell them how you’re feeling and listen to what they have to say. You may find that it isn’t nearly as bad as you believed and that you can work things out.

It can worsen mental disorders

If you battle anxiety and depression, lack of intimacy in your relationship could potentially make it worse. When you’re struggling with symptoms of mental disorders, such as low self-esteem, emptiness or sadness, it isn’t ideal to add relationship stress on top of it. This is why if you’re having these struggles already, you need to have a strong support system, especially within your partner. They should help to alleviate some of the negative feelings you may be having rather than worsening or being the source of your problems.

If you haven’t always battled depression or anxiety and it’s something that is a direct cause of your relationship, you may need to consult a professional. Whether that’s through an intimacy app or a mental health professional, reach out to someone you trust for advice. This can help you deal with your emotions and determine if the relationship you’re in right now is really the best one for you. If left unchecked, long bouts of mental strain can lead to physical health problems, so try to find ways to deal with excessive stress.

It can lead to sexual difficulties

A prolonged “dry spell” in your relationship can sometimes make intimacy difficult to resume. If and when you and your significant other decide to have sex again in the future, it can be awkward if there are unresolved issues. Not being 100% comfortable with your partner in bed can lead to multiple problems in the bedroom from a lack of sexual desire to erectile dysfunction. While things like foreplay or ED meds can temporarily fix your problem, it’s still a good idea to get to the root of the issue.

For a lack of physical intimacy, try to come up with a solution with your partner. Sometimes lack of sex can stem from something minor like your significant other being bored in the bedroom or self-consciousness. If they’re comfortable, ask them if they’re okay with trying switching things up. Adding some dirty talk into your routine or introducing sex toys into the bedroom can add some passion back into your sex life. Or, if they’re self-conscious, let them know how attractive you think they are to make them feel loved and desirable.

It interrupts your sleep quality

For most couples, bedtime is an intimate part of the day. Even if you’re just cuddling or laying close to one another while preparing to sleep, it provides couples with a sense of contentment and peace. According to WebMD, cuddling can ease pain, help your heart, reduce stress and much more. When there’s a lack of intimacy, this time together that connects you to your significant other gets disrupted. There will most likely be no cuddling or touching of any sort if you and your partner are on the outs. 

This can cause you to lose out on sleep as your mind will be focused on the discord between you and your partner. Instead of having a good sleep, you may experience a lot of tossing and turning. That can reflect the hectic state of your mind and prevent you from getting quality shut-eye.

Don’t let lack of intimacy in your relationship be the reason your health takes a turn for the worst. Talk to trusted health professionals about some options you can take if you and your partner cannot solve the issue on your own. 

There’s no shame in getting help!

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