Erectile dysfunction (ED) is the inability to get or maintain an erection that is firm enough to achieve sexual penetration and intercourse. This condition is referred to as impotence.
Most men occasionally experience some difficulty with achieving or maintaining an erection – especially during stressful situations. This however is not normally a cause for concern and may not need medical intervention. It is only considered a concern if it happens frequently or on several occasions.
Common Causes of Erectile Dysfunction:
There is no one simple answer for the question of what causes ED. The possible factors can be many – Medical, Psychological or a combination of both. ED may result from vascular disease, neurological disease, diabetes, or prostate-related treatments or surgeries.
Most common causes include conditions like Cardiovascular diseases, Diabetes, Hypertension, Physical injuries, Obesity, Age, Post Surgery conditions, Stress & anxiety, Drug, Alcohol, Smoking or even Relationship issues.
ED can be caused by only one of these factors or several. That’s why it’s important to work with your doctor so that they can rule out or treat any underlying medical conditions.
So how do you know if you are actually suffering from ED or just have a temporary condition?
Common Symptoms of ED:
You may be suffering from Erectile Dysfunction if you regularly experience at least some of the following conditions:
- Trouble getting or maintaining an erection
- Difficulty achieving sexual penetration during intercourse
- Reduced interest in sex and anxiety about sexual performance
If you experience any of the above symptoms for an extended period of time – like two or more months – you may need to talk to a doctor about your condition. Your doctor will be able to determine the cause and decide if it requires treatment.
Is there anything you can do to overcome ED and ensure better physical and sexual health?
The good news is, there are steps that you can take today that can help you overcome this condition.
- Start Moving: Exercise can help not only improve your overall health, but it can help you overcome erectile dysfunction as well. As per a recent study, just 30 minutes of walking a day can bring about up to 41% drop in risk for ED. Exercise can also help restore sexual performance – especially in middle-aged obese men with ED.
- Focus on what you eat: Ensure that you ditch junk food and regularly eat food consisting of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and fish. Reduce the intake of red and processed meat items. Check for any vitamin deficiency – especially that of vitamin B12. This could potentially lead to erectile dysfunction. In case of any such deficiency, ensure that you add multivitamin and fortified foods to your daily diet. Avoid drugs and cut down on smoking and alcohol as all these can contribute to erectile dysfunction.
- Get health checks done regularly: Remember, conditions like high blood pressure, high blood sugar, high cholesterol, and high triglycerides can all lead to the erectile dysfunction. Low levels of good HDL cholesterol can also contribute to ED. Get regular health checks done can help you monitor the condition of your vascular system. This will also help make necessary lifestyle changes if required.
- Watch your waistline: Your waistline can give a good indication of your chances of getting ED in the future. As per a study, a man with a 42-inch waist is 50% more likely to have ED than one with a 32-inch waist. Focus on losing excess weight. This will help in preventing erectile dysfunction. Remember, cardio vascular diseases and diabetes are two of the common causes of ED. Reducing your weight can help reduce the risk of both these medical conditions and ultimately, ED. Reducing weight can also help restore your hormonal balance which in turn can help you fight ED.
- Strengthen your muscles with Kegel Exercises: Doing Kegel exercises regularly will help you strengthen your pelvic floor muscles. This will help you achieve stronger erections and also helps maintain your erection during intercourse.
- Learn to manage stress: Stress and anxiety can lead to redirecting of blood flow from your penis to other muscles as part of the fight/ flight response. Practice any stress management technique like breathing exercises, meditation or even yoga to help manage stress better.
Now that you know more about what causes ED, following the tips above will go a long way in being able to prevent Erectile Dysfunction and achieving a healthy sexual life.
If you want more tips on how to get rid of your erectile dysfunction, this is the ultimate help.