Erectile dysfunction affects more than 150 million men worldwide. For many of these men, it can take one instance of losing an erection or having trouble achieving one in the first place then the fear of this happening again takes over and exacerbates the situation, making it a more regular occurrence and a very serious problem.
Effects of ED
For men who are unable to achieve or maintain an erection, the most prominent effect is that they are unable to have sex. However, the knock-on effect this has on the rest of their lives can be completely debilitating, for them and their relationship.
Partners of men who suffer from ED may often assume that they are partly to blame for the condition, with many assuming that the men may no longer find them attractive. Nine times out of ten this is completely unrealistic. Nevertheless, as most men find it hard to talk to their partners about the situation, and vice-versa, frustration soon sets in for both parties.
Erectile dysfunction can have serious effects on the psyche of a man, with many men who suffer from the condition admitting to feelings of inadequacy. Some men even claim to feel as though they have lost a huge part of their masculinity by not being able to perform what they consider to be a basic male responsibility of pleasuring their partners. These feelings can all too quickly spiral out of control into depression, which will only serve to make the situation worse.
Prevention is the key
Due to the fact that many cases are caused by that one-time “off” moment, it is wise to assume that this “off” moment that can spiral out of control, may be the best way to avoid erectile dysfunction altogether.
ED can be caused by a wide range of problems because the process involved in achieving an erection is complicated, relying on perfect harmony between many of the body’s functions to achieve the end goal. However, assuming that there is no underlying illness that will cause ED, there are a few things men can do or avoid in order to be ready whenever needed.
There are certain things that can have a negative impact on a man’s erection. The following is a list of such causes and how to overcome them and ensure a healthy and hard erection.
Stress – Whether it is derived from work, family, money or relationship troubles, stress and anxiety can cause serious problems for men trying to achieve an erection. To keep stress levels to a minimum, it is important to communicate openly about any problems. Taking part in enjoyable activities during any spare time to keep stress levels to a minimum is a great way to unwind. If there is no spare time, it’s a safe bet that that could be part of the problem, so a holiday or short break may be called for.
Medications – Anti-depressants known as SRRI’s have been known to bring about ED, as do some blood pressure medications. If a man is taking any of these medications and they cause erectile problems, it is easy to talk to the doctor who will most likely prescribe other medications that will work without the deflating side-effect.
Drugs – Recreational drugs can be extremely bad news for erections and sex life in general. Amphetamines can interfere with the nervous system and inhibit the process whereas prolonged use of marijuana is shown to decrease levels of testosterone. Also, although it is not a medical side-effect, being sent to prison for possession of illegal substances is unlikely to improve anybody’s sex life. It is therefore better to completely avoid all illegal substances.
Alcohol – Research has shown that one or two glasses of red wine an evening may be beneficial for the heart and circulatory system, meaning it will be good for erections as well. A couple of glasses of wine together as a couple may also serve to increase the desire for sex. However, too much alcohol is renowned for being a killer of a man’s erection. In the same way that illegal drugs do, too much alcohol will play around with the nervous system and stop the correct signals being sent down the spinal cord in order for your penis to become erect. Taking care to drink responsibly will undoubtedly have a good effect on the sex life.
Obesity – Being overweight has well recorded negative impacts on the whole of the body, especially the heart. This is because of the fatty build-up in the arteries which raises blood pressure. The arteries to the penis are extremely small and can often be the first to suffer from the build-up of fat. This will inhibit blood flow to the penis and just like that, an erection is lost. Regular exercise and a healthy diet will help trim off the unwanted pounds as well as releasing endorphins that make people feel happier about themselves.
Smoking – Cigarettes cause the same build-up in the arteries as being overweight produces, with the same effects. Smokers can find a wide variety of products designed to help them quit the habit.