Lately, you may have noticed that you’re having difficulty getting and keeping an erection firm and long-lasting enough for intercourse.
Or perhaps the quality of your erection is no longer what it was only a year or so ago. Should you panic? Certainly not, because panic will accomplish nothing and might conceivably make matters worse.
However, it would be equally foolhardy to ignore subtle but persistent changes in erectile function. These changes could provide valuable clues to your doctor about not only your erectile function but your overall health as well. Here are some thoughts to bear in mind when erection problems occur.
ED Symptoms Can Be Reversed
If caught early, most symptoms of erectile dysfunction can be addressed by lifestyle changes, which can reduce the effects of these symptoms on your erectile function and, in some cases, reverse them altogether. To confirm whether your erection problems are consistent with the early signs of ED, consult with your doctor. He or she knows your medical history and can best advise you on the next steps to take.
In most cases where the erection problems have not yet become intractable, healthy lifestyle changes can help to stabilize the situation and put you on the road to recovery. Trading in your unhealthy eating habits and sedentary existence for a heart-healthy diet and a program of regular physical activity is a good way to get started.
If you’re a smoker, now would be a great time to kick the habit, and if you tend to indulge too heavily in alcohol, you’ll probably find that a more moderate consumption will yield benefits in terms of erectile function. Furthermore, if you’re carrying around too many extra pounds, it’s time you start shedding them. Also, certain medical conditions, including high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and obstructive sleep apnea, predispose men to a sharply higher risk of ED. Work with your doctor to manage such conditions so that they pose less of a threat to your sex life.
Depression Begets Depression
The primary cause of erectile dysfunction is insufficient blood flow to the penis, but that’s not the only cause of ED. It’s estimated that 10 to 20 percent of all ED diagnoses can be traced to psychological factors, of which depression is one of the biggest culprits.
If you suspect that your erection problems may be caused by depression, ignoring both ED and depression will do nothing but make matters worse. Psychological counseling can help you find the underlying causes of your depression and help you to deal with them, thus improving your mood and outlook as well as your erectile function.
A study conducted by researchers affiliated with Finland’s Tampere University found that moderate to severe depression or antidepressant medication can cause ED and also that ED independently may trigger — or exacerbate — depressive mood. In other words, the sooner you get help for your depression, the sooner you’re likely to regain normal erectile function. The Finnish study was published in the February 2007 issue of “The Journal of Urology.”
It’s Just Old Age
Older men who experience erection problems all too often accept these changes as an inescapable consequence of the aging process. And that’s unfortunate because while ED is more common among older men, it is not inevitable. Steps can be taken to reduce the severity of ED symptoms, and, if indicated, drugs such as Viagra or Cialis can be taken at least to temporarily regain normal erectile function whenever the need arises.
The Heart-Penis Link
Countless doctors have observed that what’s good for the penis is good for the heart, and vice-versa. In the same way, what’s bad for one is bad for the other. If you no longer can get and keep an erection suitable for intercourse, the chances are your arteries supplying the penis are clogged. And the arteries that supply the penis are much smaller than those that feed the heart and brain. All of which means that unless interventional measures are taken, those larger arteries could eventually clog up, leading to the threat of a heart attack or stroke.
Aren’t I Too Young for ED?
Young men who begin to experience difficulty in getting and keeping an erection often tend to ignore such events or chalk them up to “a bad night.” However, the fact remains that the incidence of ED among young men appears to have increased. Generally speaking, ED among younger patients is most often caused by psychological issues, although some may suffer from impotence of physiological origin.
In recent years, attention has been focused on a relatively new organic phenomenon called hypertonic cavernous smooth muscle, which has been widely observed in young men and is resistant to most forms of conventional treatment. To facilitate erection, the smooth muscles of the corpora cavernosa — twin columns of spongy erectile tissue within the shaft of the penis — must relax so that they can be filled with blood. In men suffering from this condition, the failure of this smooth muscle to relax makes erection impossible. An overview of this emerging organic cause of ED was published in the April 2016 issue of “Translational Andrology and Urology.”
Maybe a Drug Might Help
For men who experience difficulties in getting and keeping an erection, acting quickly to learn what’s causing the problem and then seeking ways to reverse the symptoms is the first order of business. However, if the symptoms have advanced to the point where it’s no longer possible to produce an erection suitable for intercourse on your own, it’s possible that Viagra or one of the other PDE5 inhibitors can help.
You’ll need a prescription to purchase Viagra or any of the other PDE5 inhibitors available in the United States.
If you have such a prescription from your doctor, you can have it filled at the neighborhood pharmacy or use it to purchase the drug through a reliable online facilitator such as AccessRx.com. Simply fax the script or scan and email it along with your order to AccessRx.
If you’d prefer to avoid the added cost of a visit to the doctor, AccessRx can arrange a complimentary online consultation with a member of its team of licensed U.S. physicians who will authorize a prescription if appropriate. To learn more about erectile dysfunction, its causes, and the drugs available to treat it, click below to reach AccessRx’s Erectile Dysfunction page.