FORT MYERS, Fla. (Mar. 1, 2023) – March is Sexual Pleasure Month and a perfect reminder of the importance of intimacy in relationships. There are many issues that can complicate our relationship with our significant other. Dr. Melissa (Mel) Irvine, DNP is a sexual medicine expert with more than 15 years of experience who believes that even though medical conditions can sometimes cause challenges, it is more often the effects of misunderstanding, misconceptions, and lack of communication that are detrimental to connection with our partner.
“Through therapy, I can help men and women optimize their hormone levels, but I also help couples to connect and get them on the same level with intimacy,” said Dr. Mel. “Therapy isn’t just about talking someone through their problems, but offering tips and techniques to help get them on the same level and understand each other. Hormones and meds are one thing but the psyche has a lot to do with it.”
When both partners invest in the relationship with time and intention great things can happen, but we also have to be mindful of the differences between men and women when it comes to getting our needs met in a relationship.
“We need to be attentive to the needs of our partner,” said Dr. Mel. “Foreplay for a woman is her partner being more of a part of her life. Make dinner together, or help her with her exhausting day so she has some energy left for you. Mentally, women carry a lot of stress and tend to hold on to things a lot more, so help her get through it. Be there for her.”
On the flip side, Dr. Mel says we have to educate women on how men operate. “Women need to understand that most men see intimacy as a form of love and affection. It is a basic need for them. Also, men don’t know how we feel and what we like and don’t like, and many women are not good at expressing and communicating that. Communication is key!”
Dr. Mel says one of the most common complaints of male partners is that the woman never initiates. “Most women are just not typically programmed that way, but for some women, it can be an issue of hormone imbalance. Many of my patients have seen an increase in libido and energy through treatment. An imbalance can affect emotion and mood as well as many aspects of a woman’s overall health,” said Dr. Mel.
Medical conditions aside, Dr. Mel says statistically, only about 25 percent of women can have an orgasm through penetrative intercourse. She says men typically achieve orgasm easier than women, and that sometimes women require more to get to that level.
“Toys can help enhance the experience, but women should be in control of devices when learning and starting to stimulate because if it’s not done the right way, it can be painful. The man should be engaging with her at the same time, touching and kissing her, and he can take over the toy in time, once they explore and communicate what is pleasurable for her,” said Dr. Mel. “There are so many erogenous zones on a woman’s body, and you should have fun trying to find them! Sex isn’t just about sex!”
Dr. Mel verbally counsels patients on treatments that can help resolve medical issues that may impair libido or the ability to have sex. She also helps them develop ways to reconnect emotionally through communication and intentional care for one another, which is key to an exciting and healthy sexual experience and true intimacy with a partner.
Dr. Mel takes pride in empowering and educating men and women so they can be their own health advocates and make the best-informed decisions regarding treatment options and quality of life. For more information or to schedule an appointment, please visit drmelirvine.com, or call 239-351-5663. You can also follow her on Facebook for news, updates, and special offers.
About Dr. Melissa (Mel) Irvine, DNP
Dr. Mel has been in the medical field for over 15 years and is a board-certified Nurse Practitioner. She received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing at Brenau Women’s College, in Gainesville, Georgia, her Master of Science in Nursing at The University of Alabama at Birmingham, and her doctorate degree at Florida Gulf Coast University. Dr. Mel is passionate about empowering and educating women so they can be their own advocates and make the best-informed decisions regarding treatment options and quality of life. As a Sexual Medicine provider, she takes pride in providing high-quality personalized care to meet the sexual health needs of both men and women. Her interest in Sexual Medicine took her to San Diego, where she completed a preceptorship with the leading Sexual Medicine provider in the U.S., Dr. Irwin Goldstein. She is an avid learner and regularly attends educational training and conferences to stay current on the latest and most innovative treatment options.