Sex after breast cancer is sometimes compared to sex after childbirth. The first time you venture to have sex again can be scary. You may be unsure how your partner or even how your own body will react. Things may be different but that doesn’t mean that sex cannot be enjoyable again. You just might need some help to get there!
While October is the time for all things spooky and creepy here’s one thing really scary – many women miss the early signs of breast cancer because they either don’t do self-exams or do not have a mammogram. According to the National Cancer Institute, if breast cancer is caught early and localized, the 5 year survival rate is 98%. Think about that. In comparison, the five year survival rate for lung cancer is only 16%.
Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women worldwide and the second-most common cancer overall. In 2014, an estimated 232,030 cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in the U.S. alone. So no matter who you are or where you live, understanding breast cancer is important. But the most important thing to know is this: a diagnosis is not a death sentence. Breast cancer can be treated.
If you’re a breast cancer survivor, you may be suffering from the effects of your treatment. These effects could be interfering with your sexual health. If your libido is low, try reading an erotic novel. If you’ve already tapped out the Fifty Shades of Grey series, we suggest trying the Sylvia Day’s series Bared to You. To be honest, we think it’s written better and the lead female character is less whiny and virginal!
If a book isn’t your thing, try watching a movie together. The Cut recently released it’s list of “Sexiest Movies on Netflix” for October, 2021 and there’s some good ones! If you’re looking for a plot-driven erotic film, choose from this extensive list that you can watch alone or with your partner.
Another side effect of breast cancer treatment is vaginal dryness. Although we always recommend all women use a lubricant during sexual intercourse, it is particularly important if your body is not capable of producing normal levels of vaginal secretions. Although Pjur Eros Original Bodyglide is our number one selling silicone based lubricant – and a fabulous product- for breast cancer survivors we often recommend System Jo H2O, because it is water based and mimics the natural ingredients your body normally produces.
More than 70% of breast cancer survivors report having significant problems in the bedroom more than 2 years after their diagnosis according to the Journal of Sexual Medicine. The important thing to remember if you are one of them is you are not alone and you do not have to suffer. A female friendly store like Fantasy Gifts offers knowledgeable, trained women staff who can help you with all of your sexual wellness needs. You can also go online or visit your neighborhood pharmacist. The important thing is to discuss your sexual issues honestly with your doctor and your partner. Empower yourself and recognize you deserve a healthy and happy sexual life.
Updated from a blog published October, 2019.