At Illuminate, we take a holistic approach to wellness, addressing aging or physical changes to your face or body holistically. A huge part of complete and total wellness is sexual health. Due to lack of sleep, stress, and other lifestyle factors, however, fatigue too often depletes sex drive. We sat down with Dr. Luciano Del Toro of our Illuminate Wellness Program to discuss this matter, and how he and Illuminate can help.
Q: Dr. Del Toro, wellness seems to be more of a top-tier value, especially in cosmopolitan areas like Palo Alto. It’s surprising many people are fatigued. Do you really find it to be a big problem? And if so, why?
A: A lot of patients come into the office and complain of fatigue. We’ve found that overworking prevents them from having proper nutrition, engaging in regular exercise, and having good sleep.
Q: What should someone do if they’re struggling with fatigue? How can Illuminate help?
A: People struggling with fatigue should schedule appointments with their primary care physicians [to see] if there are any biological reasons why they have fatigue. Often people are too busy to exercise, too busy to eat healthily. [At Illuminate] we take a multidisciplinary approach…we run tests, take into account their schedules, habits, and routines.
Q: What is the link between fatigue and sex drive?
A: I think they go hand-in-hand. It’s very common to have fatigue be related to a lack of sexual activity. More often than not, people who are struggling with fatigue don’t want to engage in sex. The lack of desire and fatigue go hand-in-hand.
Q: At what age do you typically see increased fatigue and a resulting decrease in sex drive for men and women?
A: It usually happens in the mid-30s and early 40s for both women and men. More people are getting busier and busier. Men used to complain in their 50s and women in their 40s, but more people feel fatigued now due to their busy lifestyles. Primarily, work and activity levels can be attributed to this…them focusing [too much] on work and lack of sleep.
Q: What are some of the experiences your patients have encountered in which fatigue has affected their sex drives? How does this affect their lives overall?
A: Most patients, regardless of their background, when they come in and complain of fatigue, they always say that they have no interest in sex or exercise. This leads to frustration in relationships. People say that they have “lost their spark.” Patients understand that improving their fatigue can improve every aspect of their lives. This includes family life and relationships with their kids as well.
Q: Do you often see couples together?
A: Yes, we do. A lot of times, patients do come alone – women or men. They have problems believing that they have problems. They are too occupied in their lives and they use their activity as an excuse for not addressing their fatigue. Once patients are more cooperative and arrive with their spouses, they are treated together. Treating couples together is absolutely more beneficial and can yield a higher rate of success. We always encourage them to be treated together.
Q: If a patient comes to you experiencing fatigue and a drop in sex drive, what is your approach to helping them?
A: We run an interview, asking more than 100+ questions to really get to the bottom of where patients are. We then evaluate whether the patients are good candidates for hormone replacement. Some of the tests we conduct include blood tests. We go over their deficiencies and how we can treat them. We follow up on a weekly basis to see how patients are doing.
Q: What are some of the treatments you’ve advised that have worked best?
A: Besides hormones, we always recommend our patients follow a very strict program. Hormones alone are not a cure to all problems related to fatigue. Better nutrition, vitamins, iron, calcium supplements can all be helpful as well. We give them supplements to improve their digestion – we take a multi-approach to treating fatigue and this is much better than simply doing hormone replacement. Probiotics are helpful as well.
Q: What do you wish people knew about fatigue and its deleterious effects?
A: One of the most important things is to be able to give your body and mind the opportunity to feel normal again. We often tend to neglect the most important thing, that is our bodies. In order to be successful in your life and profession, it’s important to take the time to take care of your body.
Q: You have seen people perform better in their lives after treating their fatigue. What does Illuminate do that works so well?
A: Patients absolutely tend to perform well in their professions when they properly address their fatigue levels. After getting back to their normal hormone levels, they find that they are much better in their jobs and in school. This is something that is going to be very revolutionary for most patients. Patients tend to just go to several doctors to take care of one thing at a time, we give patients the opportunity to address all of their problems in an organized way.
Q: If someone is fatigued and experiencing a drop in sex drive they should just call your office?
A: Call our office and discuss the process with our staff. Our staff will guide you through the process – we try to make it very welcoming, we make it a 1-2 step process to keep it very simple.
If you’re struggling with fatigue and/or a lack of sex drive, contact Illuminate to set up a consultation with Dr. Del Toro. Visit us online or call us at 650.433.8621 to start your journey on the path to wellness today!