What You Need to Know about Erectile Dysfunction Now
Erectile dysfunction, which is sometimes called ED, simply means you have some difficulty getting or keeping an erection as you have intercourse. You might see it referred to as impotence in some cases. It’s not uncommon to see men suffer with ED occasionally. Often stress will be behind the occasional problem. If it’s happening regularly, though, you may need treatment for it because it can be a sign of other possible health issues. Don’t worry, though, you’re not alone. Studies have found that one in four men under forty suffer with it, and the risk increases with age. In most cases, you can improve your ED!
Before you begin to understand ED, it might help to know a little more about an erection. These occur because the blood flow to your penis increases, and that usually happens when you have sexual thoughts or sexual touch occurs. When a man is excited, the penis’ muscles actually relax a bit to let blood flow to the area. Inside, there are two empty chambers waiting to be filled with blood. Once that happens, the penis gets hard. The erection usually ends when the muscles contract, and then the blood that flowed in can flow back out once more.
The Causes behind ED
While there are lots of reasons you may be suffering from ED, it can be tough to pin down exactly what’s going on. You could be dealing with emotional issues like stress, anxiety, relationship issues, or even depression. You could also be fighting physical issues like high cholesterol, hormonal imbalances, heart problems, or even high blood pressure. It could also be due to your age or even obesity. Bigger problems like kidney disease could even be on the horizon if you’re dealing with ED. Some medications, including those prescribed or those you take recreationally, could cause ED, as could tobacco products and alcohol. Even a pelvic injury could cause ED. Because there are so many potential issues, it’s important to complete an online consultation or book an appointment with your GP if you have ED.
Diabetes and ED often go hand in hand. High amounts of blood sugar damage blood vessels and nerves, which can lead to difficulty with erections. It is a major risk factor for ED, and keeping your diabetes under control can mean keeping your ED under control.
Potential ED Treatments
The best treatment for ED depends a bit on why you’re dealing with it in the first place. Doctors often prescribe a number of ED medications to help manage the symptoms. Sildenafil, also known as Viagra, is quite common. So are Avanafil, Tadalafil, and Vardenafil. All of these are oral medications. An injection containing Alprostadil could also be used to help treat the problem.
There are other possible treatments your doctor may recommend, though, including talk therapy. It can help you deal with the stress and anxiety factors that often surround this condition.
Vacuum Pumps may also help. These plastic tubes use an elastic ring and a pump to help create an maintain an erection.
There are some exercises that could help too. Kegel exercises strengthen your pelvic floor muscles, and may help you get and maintain better erections. Moderate exercise on a daily basis can also help to increase blood flow. Yoga may also be useful.
Keeping an eye on your diet could help as well. Focus on whole grains, vegetables, and fruits, and try to limit any red meat you may eat as well as full fat dairy products. You may also want to eliminate processed sugar and excessive alcohol.
Some men turn to herbs and supplements for help. Asparagus racemosus has shown some promise, as have DHEA, ginseng, and L-arginine. Some turn to L-carnitine and yohimbe, as well as horny goat weed and zinc, too.
Acupuncture has been used to treat ED, too, as it works through nerve stimulation which can release neurotransmitters. Prostatic massage, which is a type of massage therapy, may also be used to treat ED.
If these medications and options don’t help, your GP may recommend surgery. Penile implants allow you to use an internal pump to make your penis larger. Vascular surgery can help to repair any blocked arteries so blood can flow to your penis and solve the problem.
Not Sure You Have ED?
You might be suffering from this condition if you have any trouble getting or keeping an erection. You may also have a reduced interest in having sex at all. It’s also possible that you have other sexual disorders too like premature ejaculation and delayed ejaculation. If your symptoms last three months or more, it’s time to get help now.
Your GP’s office may do a physical examination and do a rectal exam if you go for ED testing. Your doctor will also ask you about your stress levels, medications, and relationships to help determine the cause. He or she may do an ultrasound, does a Nocturnal Penile Tumescence test to evaluate your nocturnal erections through a wearable device, or do urine and blood tests. All of these can help guide your GP toward the right treatment.