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Erectile Dysfunction: Causes, prevention, symptoms, and treatment

A study by the University of Wisconsin Health says about 5 per cent of men that are 40 years old have complete erectile dysfunction, and that number increases to about 15 per cent of men at age 70. Read about its causes, prevention, symptoms and treatments.

“Oh, Dapo?* he went soft, he couldn’t get it up, I did everything, even tickled his balls, nothing. It was so embarrassing!!”

That was Dapo’s girlfriend gisting her friends about Dapo who suffers from erectile dysfunction, a condition that, according to research, affects up to 15% of men worldwide yearly. It is the most prevalent sex problem among men, and it is something that can be treated and managed. It is not a death sentence for your sex life, as you will soon find out.

What Exactly Is Erectile Dysfunction?

Simply put, Erectile Dysfunction (ED), also known as impotence, is when a guy has trouble getting hard and staying hard enough for sex. This is something that has probably happened to most guys at some point or the other during their sex life, but when it occurs every time, then it becomes a problem that needs to be addressed.

What Are The Symptoms of Erectile Dysfunction?

ED symptoms are usually quite clear cut, they include:

  • Difficulty in getting an erection (you don’t get hard, no matter what you do).
  • Difficulty in keeping an erection (you go soft quickly).
  • Low sexual desire (you are not always in the mood)

 

When you notice any of these symptoms, you might have ED and you should go see your Doctor or a Urologist.

What Causes Erectile Dysfunction?

The process of sexual arousal for a man is quite complicated, involving several interconnected body systems including the brain, nerves, hormones, blood vessels, and emotions. If there is a problem with any of these, ED could develop. Stress and mental health issues could cause it as well, or worsen it.

So, as a general rule, go to a doctor after noticing the symptoms of ED because it could also be an indicator of a more serious underlying health issue including cardiovascular blockage, high blood pressure, or diabetes.

This is a particularly important topic to discuss during this period of a pandemic. Studies have shown that men are experiencing an increase in ED symptoms during this time due to stress and increased consumption of alcohol. Even Google has released data showing that searches for information on ED have reached the highest in the past 1 year.

It seems Dapo is not the only one struggling to rise to the occasion. Maybe you are even part of that search statistic on Google, but not to worry, you are not alone, and there are ways to fix this.

How Can I Treat Erectile Dysfunction?

The most straightforward way of dealing with ED is to fix the underlying cause of the condition. Many times ED treatment starts with taking care of your cardiovascular health. You may be asked by your doctor to make some lifestyle changes like

  • Losing weight - Men that are overweight can easily develop diabetes, heart disease and high cholesterol, all of which can cause ED.
  • Stop smoking - Smoking can lead to ED, according to health experts.
  • Exercise pelvic floor muscles - Yes, this is not a typo and this is not only for women. Kegel exercise can be beneficial for mean dealing with ED.
  • Medicine - Several drugs can help with ED, depending on the cause; if it’s due to hormone imbalance, hormone replacement can work and if high blood pressure is the underlying issue, drugs can be described to treat that.
  • Reduce Stress- In some cases of ED, emotional issues and stress are the underlying factors. Getting treatment for these will help with the impotence.
  • Penis pumps- These encourage erections through suction, and they have been effective in treating ED when drugs are not usable.

How Can I Prevent Erectile Dysfunction?

Since this condition is caused mainly by other medical conditions, preventing ED also means preventing those medical issues from developing.

Make healthy life choices, go for regular checkups, reduce alcohol intake, stop smoking, do not take drugs, exercise, and do things that help you reduce stress.

These are all simple, practical steps that you can take to help you manage your Erectile Dysfunction. Dapo had to go through a lot of ridicule and a period of really horrible sexual experiences, but he did the work, got the help he needed, and got over his condition. If Dapo is you, you can get over it too, just do the work and then enjoy an amazing sex life!

*Names have been changed to protect their identity

 

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