What is Sexual Performance Anxiety? Symptoms, Causes, Treatment 

Usually, people consider sex and physical intimacy pleasurable activities. But you can’t seem to have fun and enjoy yourself if you’re worried about that how you perform. Today, we’ll discuss what is sexual performance anxiety; its symptoms, causes, and treatment.

What is Sexual Performance Anxiety? 

Sexual performance anxiety is a form of performance anxiety comprising worrisome and fearful feelings relevant to sexual and physical intimacy. It could occur before or during physical intercourse. Sometimes, people only use performance anxiety while referring to SPA in the short form.

Usually, people confuse the term SPA with erectile dysfunction. It’s important to mention here that SPA could sometime point toward erectile dysfunction, but both of them are completely different conditions.

Erectile dysfunction is the physical incapability of a person to keep one’s erected. SPA comprises worrisome and worrisome and fearful feelings relevant to erection, unable to satisfy the needs of the partner, and some other factors.

Symptoms of SPA

Sexual performance anxiety has got both physical and mental symptoms, and its severity varies from the occasional occurrence to frequency, and severity. SPA could impact both men and women equally, and they could be different. However, some of the main symptoms of sexual performance anxiety are as follows;

  • Unsettling stomach
  • Sweating
  • High heart rate
  • Limited interest in the physical intimacy
  • Painful feelings during sex among women
  • Dryness of vagina among women
  • Erectile dysfunction among men
  • Delayed ejaculation among men
  • Premature ejaculation among men
  • Fearful and worrisome feelings about sex
  • Worrisome and fearful feelings during or before the sex
  • Negative feelings and thoughts relevant to the sex


Your psychologist, therapist, or mental health professional would diagnose the sexual performance anxiety. The healthcare provider would analyze various mental and physical symptoms along with the relevant circumstances in order to diagnose the condition.

Causes of Sexual Performance Anxiety 

There are various causes of SPA comprising fearful and worrisome feelings relevant to sex. Some people have got body insecurity issues like being overweight like they won’t be able to satisfy their partner. others would have the previous bad experience with their relationship or sexual performance.

Some of the other possible causes that produce general stress are the usage of illegal drugs, smoking, alcohol consumption, and social pressure on performing well. SPA could be the side effect of certain types of medicines. However, it doesn’t matter whatever the causes, you can treat SPA.

Treatment of Sexual Performance Anxiety 

Sexual performance anxiety falls under the category of mental health condition and it has links with other conditions like depression. Both of these conditions increase the symptoms of one another. For instance, SPA amplifies the signs of depression and depression amplifies the symptoms of SPA. You can treat sexual performance anxiety through psychotherapy and medication. The details of these plans are as follows;


Therapeutic treatment is the best way to deal with the symptoms of SPA. CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy) is a very famous treatment method to deal with SPA symptoms both in males and females. It has turned out to be an effective treatment method to deal with various symptoms.

Systematic desensitization and exposure therapy allow you to decrease the fearful feelings relevant to sex. Exposure therapy exposes the person to the fearful feelings relevant to SPA in a controlled environment, and the therapist helps the person deal with the fear. However, systematic desensitization comprises gradual exposure and relaxation.


Sexual performance anxiety could cause erectile dysfunction. Your doctor would recommend you some medicines to deal with erection by relieving the anxiety. If there is a problem of low testosterone level and lower libido, then testosterone replacement therapy is recommended. However, some of the main medicines to deal with erectile dysfunctions are as follows;

  • Muse
  • Intracavernous injections like Caverjet, Trimix, QuadMix, and Bimix
  • Stendra
  • Levitra
  • Cialis
  • Viagra

Coping Mechanism 

Some of the other coping strategies to deal with the symptoms of SPA are as follows;

Mindfulness Meditation

Mindfulness meditation is the process of training your mind to deal with stress, anxiety, and other challenges of life in the healthier ways it teaches you to relax and calm down your mind by closing your eyes and focusing on deep breathing. A person can also practice mindfulness without meditation.


Yoga is a very good practice and technique to deal with the physical and mental challenges of life. Psychologists also refer to it for the treatment of erectile dysfunction and SPA.


Communicating with your partner about the stress you’re feeling is a very good start. It offers you a lot of benefits of establishing the connection and strengthening the relationship. When partners have trust, then they can come up with an effective solution collectively.

Conclusion: What is Sexual Performance Anxiety? Symptoms, Causes, Treatment 

After an in-depth study of what is sexual performance anxiety; its symptoms, causes, diagnosis, treatment, and coping mechanism; we’ve realized that SPA is a serious problem for some people. If you’re experiencing its symptoms, then you should consult with the therapist.