Men, though not all, have a tendency to be flashy and flaunting of what they have and what they can offer, especially to the ladies. One of what they are usually most proud of is their manhood. So imagine a man, offering pleasure to his lady and not be able to do it because his penis won’t harden long enough to do the job? It could be distressing for him and at the same time can possibly cause a problem for their relationship. One of the conclusions he will make is that he has erectile dysfunction.
What is Erectile Dysfunction?
An erectile dysfunction (ED), also known as impotence, is the persistent difficulty of getting and keeping an erection long enough to do sexual intercourse. It affects as many as 30 million men in the world or about 1 in every 5 men. Erectile Dysfunction specialists from DB Clinic thinks that it's more common for men over 40 years old.
Biologically, it is natural for men to have erection problems from time to time and not all of these problems are automatically considered erectile dysfunction. If it happens once or twice and intermittently, it should not be a major concern. This can happen if you have had too much alcohol or perhaps you are under stress. However, you may be dealing with erectile dysfunction if you are experiencing sexual problems frequently and if you have these symptoms:
- Reduced sex desire
- Having a hard time maintaining an erection
- Soft erection
This condition can be a bit difficult for most men to deal with; it comes with anxiety and may also cause low self-esteem of not being able to perform sexually. The good news is ED is treatable and there are a lot of options for treatments suitable for an individual.
What Erectile Dysfunction Treatment is There?
Thus, if you think you might be having this condition, it is best to visit your doctor and explain your experience. Also, your doctor needs to know the underlying factors causing your ED to also know the treatment for you. Normally, the doctor would first try non-invasive treatments.
Blood flow in the penis is limited and nerves are harmed
Medication to lower blood pressure and lower cholesterol
Stress and/or emotional reasons
Tabaco, alcohol, and/or drug use
Prescription Drugs for other health problems
Change of medication
There are a lot of medications that are available to treat ED. The most common medicines prescribed by doctors include:
- Sildenafil (Viagra)
- Tadalafil (Cialis)
- Vardenafil (Levitra)
- Avanafil (Stendra)
These medicines improve the effects of nitric oxides which is a natural body chemical that helps relax the muscles in the penis. It increases the blood flow to the penis that allows an erection to be achieved when sexually stimulated.
Viagra does not need a prescription and can just be bought over the counter while for the other medicines, a prescription is needed. Though Viagra is considered an over the counter drug, it is still advisable to talk to your doctor before taking any. This goes the same to other medicines to treat ED.
In sex, both the body and the mind should be working together. So when you have anxiety, stress, or any emotional problem, your mind is not in great condition hence can cause ED. If this is true for your case, it may help to talk to a professional therapist.
Talking to a therapist may help you overcome the factors that cause your anxiety and stress that affect your sexual well-being. These talks are usually in a series of sessions and in some instances, the therapist will invite your partner to participate too. By being there, your partner can also understand you more and can also help in reconnecting both of you, which may also treat your ED.
An imbalance in hormones, especially having low levels of testosterone, decreases a man’s sex drive that results in ED. This is a rare case but if it happens, a testosterone replacement therapy will be recommended by your doctor. This therapy may also be combined with other medications and therapy as needed.
Regular consumption of tobacco, alcohol and drugs can damage your blood vessels. When your blood vessels are unhealthy, you are at higher risk of having ED. ED can be treated if lifestyle, such as these three are modified. Here is a list of habits you should be practising:
- Avoid smoking (tobacco or cigarettes)
- Avoid drinking alcohol (more than 14 units of alcohol)
- Don’t do drugs
- Exercise regularly
- Lose and maintain a healthy weight
- Eat a balanced diet
- Maintain a low blood pressure
- Reduce stress
Change of medication
Some medications for other health problems may also cause ED. These medications include, but not limited to the following:
- Blood pressure medications
Most people with heart disease take medicines that help in lowering blood pressure. Blood pressure medications, in general, may cause ED but the most common are diuretics (water pills), such as thiazide diuretics and loop diuretics.
Though depression itself can cause ED, antidepressants, drugs that help people with depression, can also cause ED. Anti-depressants decrease sex drive thus results in ED or worsen the ED of those who are already having the condition.
Aside from blocking histamine that triggers an allergic reaction, antihistamines also block healthy erections.
- Acid Reflux Medications
There is some acid reflux medicine, known as H2 blockers that also affects histamine and cause ED. The drug cimetidine has the highest risk for ED.
There are still other medications that may cause ED not mentioned in this list. If you are taking medicines similar to the above and you think it has affected your sexual experience, discuss with your doctor for the next steps to be done. Your doctor may prescribe you with other medications. However, do not change your medications if not consulted and directed by your doctor.
If none from the above mentioned is applicable for you, it possible that your doctor may advise you do undergo other treatments for ED, like the following:
- Injections and Suppositories
In case pills don’t work for you, as an alternative, your doctor may prescribe you with a drug called alprostadil which boosts blood flow allowing you to achieve an erection in just minutes. This is administered in two ways, by injection (using a needle) or suppositories (pellets are inserted) in your penis.
- Vacuum Devices
For people who have recently undergone surgery and need penis rehabilitation, vacuum devices are recommended. Vacuum devices help in restoring blood flow to the penis. The device is composed of three (3) parts: a clear, plastic that is slid in the penis, a manual or battery-operated pump that sucks air from the tube allowing more blood flow to the penis, and an elastic ring that is positioned at the base of the penis when erection is achieved so that blood will not drain out from it and firmness is maintained.
If all other treatments are unsuccessful, your doctor may recommend surgery such as placement of an implant in the penis or vascular reconstruction surgery to improve blood flow. There are still other surgeries available and these should be properly discussed to your doctor to know the risks and the expected results for such treatments.
Whichever treatment is applicable for you, the only way to improve and treat ED is to follow your doctor’s direction.