What causes reduced clitoral sensation?

Dear Clare, A year ago, I underwent a wedge labiaplasty procedure as I felt much larger than average down there (partly due to having PCOS I think). My clitoris and clitoral hood/body was largely left untouched; a small area of redundant skin from either side of the clitoral body was sewn to the very bottom edges of my hood (using absorbable stitches), but this was not a cause for concern at the time as there was no bleeding, bruising, numbness etc. I think the main issue was that I experienced a lot of swelling of my labia and the clitoris/clitoral hood and body a few days after my wedge procedure, which lasted for roughly 6 months in total. This was worsened by sitz/salt baths, which I was advised to take regularly (for 2 months or so) to help close my labia wounds, and I ended up having to take Ibuprofen alongside these to reduce swelling. I am still able to get aroused and I do enjoy clitoral stimulation when I’m in the mood, but it takes me longer to become aroused than it did a few years ago (without the aid of porn), and I find the clitoris less sensitive to touch. I am able to orgasm whenever I masturbate/have sex, but my clitoral orgasms are less intense than they once were; before surgery, my clitoris was extremely sensitive to the slightest touch. My labia is no longer sensitive, but this was expected from my surgery; I purposely avoided having a hood reduction, however, to prevent loss of sexual pleasure knowing how pivotal the clitoris is to this. I think it is unlikely that I experienced clitoral nerve damage during the surgery, but I am concerned that the extreme swelling afterwards caused my clitoris to become less sensitive? Some other factors to note are that I came off birth control before the surgery to reduce my risk of clotting and I haven’t gone back on it yet, so I’m not sure if the pregnancy-like symptoms of birth control could have impacted upon my reduced clitoral sensation/sexual function (combined with my PCOS symptoms). I’ve also been stimulating my clitoris a lot more than I used to and I masturbate most days; I wonder whether I have been masturbating ‘too much’ and should take a break from clitoral stimulation for a while to see if this helps? What causes reduced clitoral sensation? Are there any lubricants or oils that could help to boost clitoral sensitivity, or even any dietary changes that could be made? Thanks a lot Clare!

There are a number of factors that can cause a loss of clitoral sensation, and it is difficult for me to pinpoint only one of them and to tell you that it is the cause.

Reduced blood flow to the area, which can be caused by different factors including a medical condition, aging or stress, can cause reduced clitoral sensation and lower arousal levels. Nerve damage from your labiaplasty surgery also can’t be ruled out, even if the surgery did not include a hoodectomy.

Lower levels of sex hormones such as estrogen and testosterone, caused by aging, could also be the cause. If the issue is hormonal, the solution may lie in hormone replacement therapy. I suggest that you speak to your gynecologist about getting your hormone levels tested, which will either confirm that the problem is hormonal or rule hormones out as the problem.

I hope that you are able to get to the bottom of the problem and find a solution.

Clare xo

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