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As women, society can often make us feel like we’re on a timeline. Not only are we expected to bear children by a certain age, we are also expected to cease being sexy as we get older. But we're happy to say that more and more women are throwing this timeline to the wind and charting their own paths!

And the truth is, sexuality and sensuality can change for a woman throughout her life. At some points feeling sexy comes easily, while other times being in touch with our sexual selves is the last thing on the to-do list. It may be a loss of libido, pain with intercourse, fear of pregnancy or STD’s, or stress regarding infertility. Anyway you look at it, women’s sexual needs and desires fluctuate naturally with time. And we know that an honest discussion about these matters can dramatically change a woman’s quality of life and help prevent unwanted health problems.

Featured articles on sexual health

Understanding sexual arousal in women

Reviewed by Dr. Mary James, ND

See more articles on sexual health

Steamier sex without the guilt and shame, by Barbara Carrellas. One of America’s premier sex educators shares her ideas about how to have a good sex life without the negativity that can interrupt the fun. Barbara shares excellent ideas for safely getting out of your sexual comfort zone.

Low sex drive in women, by Dr. Mary James, ND. In one of our most popular articles, you get the inside story on the ups and downs of libido in women, including the often overlooked physical obstacles that can interfere with a healthy sex life at any age. Plus, learn how to restore your sex drive now.

Sexual exploration in menopause. Our 3-step plan helps you get back to having more bedroom fun, with a partner or without. Menopause and low libido happen, but we can show you how to move past these little speed bumps to make sex fun, fresh and satisfying again.

Sexology 101 — ignite your sex life with advice from an expert. Sexual changes in midlife leave women understandably frustrated — and wondering how to get their “groove” back. Women's Health Network talks with sex educator Barbara Carrellas about ways to restore — or develop — your sexual identity.

Safe sex in midlife. With more Baby Boomer women enjoying revitalized sex lives, their risk for contracting a sexually transmitted disease or infection is on the rise as well. Learn what emotional and physical factors play into sexual wellness for women in midlife, as well as practical guidance in how to talk to your partner about safe sex (a useful skill for sexually active women of all ages!).

Health benefits of masturbation, Reviewed by Dr. Sharon Stills, NMD. Over two-thirds of women report never experiencing a “vaginal” orgasm. Here is a fresh perspective on the anatomy of the clitoris, and a discussion about the reasons why masturbation is healthy for our minds and bodies.

Choosing birth control — options for women, reviewed by Dr. Amber Hayden, DO. A woman’s ability to govern her own fertility is of primary importance to her health and well-being. Here is Women's Health Network’s three-part approach to choosing a birth control method, based on assessing each woman’s unique needs and prefererences.

Birth control method comparison chart. A compilation of currently available choices, this chart lists the pros and cons of the various methods and can serve as a useful guide to your birth control decisions.

IUDs and other non-hormonal methods for birth control. For women considering non-hormonal options for birth control, there is new information available on the safety and effectiveness of IUDs.

STD signs, symptoms and testing, reviewed by Barbara Carrellas, AASECT and David L. R. Houston, MA. STD’s are one of those global “facts of life” as old as humankind — but that doesn’t mean we should draw the covers up over our heads in dread or throw caution to the wind — neither approach will serve us. The best preventative is knowledge — and a good place to start for anyone concerned about their risks is by learning common STD signs and symptoms, as well as what’s involved in testing (see our full article on safe sex for tips on prevention).

What to expect with a pelvic exam and pap smear. Routine pelvic exam and Pap testing is the number–one way to protect your reproductive health. Don’t let fear of the unknown put you at unnecessary risk.

Reproductive health: colposcopy, ECC, endometrial biopsy, and genital wart treatment. An overview of some common evaluation procedures women undergo following abnormal Pap test readings, as well as treatment options for genital wart removal.

Common questions about HPV and Pap smear results. Here are the answers to many concerns women have when it comes to HPV and Pap smear results.

Abnormal Pap smears and HPV. Learn about Pap testing and what the results can mean for you.

List of common Pap test acronyms. Find out what the acronyms used to categorize Pap results really mean.

Pelvic floor strengthening — Kegel exercises and other options to reduce symptoms, Reviewed by Dr. Sarika Arora, MD. Pelvic floor strengthening with Kegel exercises and other methods is important for women’s health – here are the symptoms of a weak pelvic floor and what you can do.

Vaginal yeast infections — a natural approach. Vaginal yeast infections are uncomfortable and embarrassing — and frustrating when they seem to recur again and again. Fortunately, Women's Health Network has advice for how to solve yeast infections naturally.

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