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Sexual arousal is a complex process in men combining different body systems; the brain, hormones, emotions, nerves, muscles and blood vessels in a delicate body function ballet with the desired result being a tantalising bedroom dance. Penises don’t always do as they’re told. Impotence or erectile dysfunction is one of the most common problems effecting bedroom performance and usually isn’t something to worry about. It is so common that around half of men between the ages of 40-70 experience impotence to some degree. Although it is nothing to be embarrassed about and even a natural part of the aging process, it can lead to embarrassment and frustration. The inability to get and maintain an erection firm enough for sexual activity can also lead to a poor sex life, with reduced sexual desires, stress and anxiety.
Failing to get and maintain an erection can lead to stress, which, in turn is a common cause of impotence. It can brutalise confidence and cause embarrassment, which can both contribute to relationship problems, another cause of erectile dysfunction, in a vicious circle.
If your brain struggles to function under stress, it goes without saying that other parts of your body are going to struggle. If your mind is elsewhere, like on the big meeting scheduled for tomorrow, your bedroom performance will be impacted. The brain decides when something is arousing. Without this first step, it can’t alert the other body systems that it is time for an erection. Open communication with your partner can help relieve stress and relationship problems, which lead to more stress.
Having a drink may calm nerves, especially if this is the first time with a new partner, but it won’t help get or maintain an erection. Anything that effects blood flow to the penis will affect performance. Blood vessels are needed in the bedroom ballet and any substance use will hurt them. Once you’re in a situation your brain finds sexually arousing, it’ll send blood to your penis. If the vessels are damaged, they can’t trap the blood there, maintaining an erection. If they’re really damaged, the blood won’t get there in the first place, leading to embarrassment and frustration. Excessive drug use and heavy drinking, especially long term, can cause permanent erectile dysfunction and bedroom problems. Stick to the recommended alcohol allowance of 14 units per week, to maintain health and penis health. Avoid recreational drug use. Even cannabis can cause impotence and prolonged use can cause permanent damage.
The bed should only be used for two things; sex and sleeping. If the body and mind are just plain tired, the sleeping will best. Your body will be too tired to maintain an erection and your brain will be on the thing it wants most of all, sleep. Chronic fatigue will lead to chronic erectile problems.
Smokers be warned. Apart from causing lung damage amongst a long list of other health problems, tobacco use can affect bedroom performance. The smoking habit itself smells pretty rank, but if you’re lucky enough to bag a partner while standing in a hazy yellow cloud of nicotine smoke, be aware you may not be able to get an erection. Tobacco use restricts blood flow to the veins and arteries and this includes the ones in the penis, which provide an erection.
Age can contribute to erectile dysfunction. Erections may take longer to develop and not be as firm as they were in youth. Older men are more likely than younger men to have health conditions that restrict blood flow. There’s also a lot more daily stresses and a lot less energy in someone who is 40 compared to someone in their 20s.
Erectile problems are most likely psychological if an erection can be achieved some of the time but not during sexual activity. Untreated anxiety and depression take the brain, the body’s first stop to an erection, down other passages and away from sexual arousal. Much like stress and tiredness, the mind is elsewhere. If the mind is elsewhere, you may not become aroused in the first place and if you do and your mind wanders down some dark corridor, the erection will be lost. Some of the medications used to treat anxiety and depression can result in erectile dysfunction. If you are on these medications, even if you aren’t taking them for anxiety or depression, talk to your doctor if you are experiencing impotence. Another psychological cause of erectile dysfunction is being raised to believe sex is dirty or a sin.
Obesity not only leads to diabetes and high blood pressure, but it can cause erectile dysfunction by itself. Moderate exercise and a healthy diet can not only help with weight loss, but help the body fight erectile dysfunction naturally. Moderate exercise can also reduce stress levels. Keeping the body healthy helps maintain all the systems needed to work together to create an erection.
Any medical conditions that restrict blood flow can result in impotence. High blood pressure and high cholesterol narrow blood vessels, including those in the penis needed to get and maintain an erection once the brain decides that something is sexually arousing. Prostrate problems can also be behind erectile dysfunction, especially if you are peeing more frequently (also a sign of diabetes). If you suspect any health problem or medication side effect may be behind your impotence, you need to seek medical advice from a trained professional, such as a doctor. See a doctor if erectile dysfunction happens frequently as it may be the sign of an underlying serious health issue.
Injuries that restrict blood flow can restrict the blood flow to the penis, as can prostate surgery and cancer treatments. They can also stop the brain from becoming aroused.
Pelvic floor exercises aren’t just for women. They can help men get and maintain an erection by maintaining the muscles and blood vessels.
Medications are available to treat impotence. Sildenafil may help maintain an erection during sex. It works by relaxing the veins that carry blood to the penis and blocking the production of a chemical that hinders this to increase blood flow to the penis. Erectile dysfunction isn’t typically a topic for discussion on a first date, as it may be with a life partner so it can be taken up to four hours ahead of time without an embarrassing random erection. Your brain must first find something sexually arousing and send the signal to your penis before an erection occurs, even while taking sildenafil. One dose can keep working for up to six hours, if taken on an empty stomach with no alcohol. An empty stomach isn’t always possible, particularly on a first date, so avoid a meal high in fat content. It works best when taken one hour before sexual activity.
Sildenafil can be purchased discreetly with a prescription from Click Pharmacy. A short questionnaire will review whether Sildenafil is right for you and it can be with you by next day delivery. It does not treat any of the underlying causes of erectile dysfunction.
If erectile dysfunction sticks around for longer than two weeks, speak to your doctor as it may be a sign of a more serious medical condition.