Erection problems occur when a man cannot achieve or maintain an erection firm enough to have sexual intercourse with a partner. While this is not a life-threatening issue, one should still consult a medical expert if they are unable to achieve an erection for one-quarter of the time to find out the underlying cause for this problem. Erectile problems are also known as:
- Sexual dysfunction
- ED or erectile dysfunction
Common causes of erection problems
It is necessary to understand why this problem occurs to get the right treatment. According to various medical reports, the most common causes of erection problems are psychological, physical, or a combination of both.
Some research studies state that older men suffer from erectile dysfunction due to various physical reasons. The blood vessels and nerves responsible for an erection may be affected by this disorder.
On the other hand, some medical studies indicate that most of the times, psychological effects and lifestyle concerns cause erectile dysfunction in young men.
Here is a list of the probable physical causes that lead to erectile dysfunction in men. Note that these causes may vary from one person to another.
- Heart disease along with the narrowing of the blood vessels
- High cholesterol
- High blood pressure
- Metabolic syndrome and obesity
- Multiple sclerosis
- Parkinson’s disease
- Peyronie’s disease (anatomical or structural penis disorder)
- Hardening of the arteries
- Substance abuse
- Kidney or liver disease
- Treatment processes for the prostate issues
- Congenital genitalia issues
- Excessive tobacco use
- Hormonal disorders like testosterone deficiency and thyroid conditions
- Radiation therapy in the pelvic region
- Injuries to the spinal cord or pelvic area
- Surgical complications
Almost 90 percent of the erection problems are the result of physical causes. Psychological causes lead to fewer cases. If there is no identifiable physiological issue or anatomical deformity, the following psychological factors could be the cause of erectile dysfunction:
- Relationship conflicts
- Fear of intimacy
It is essential to understand that sexual dysfunction can occur due to physical as well as psychological causes at the same time. For instance, if a man is suffering from obesity, the change in the blood flow, a physical condition, can cause sexual dysfunction. This affected person may also suffer from low self-esteem, which in turn can affect the erectile function.
Treatment options for erection problems
Various medications and surgical options are available that can alleviate and cure erection problems. However, without a medical expert’s guidance, it is preferable not to take any medication as it could lead to undesirable side effects. Further, overcoming erectile dysfunction becomes relatively easy when one pairs medication with some of the healthy lifestyle changes mentioned below.
- Maintain the right diet: Some medical studies have stated that those who maintain a diet rich in the natural foods such as vegetables, fruits, fish, and whole grains rather than refined grains, and processed meat, have lesser chances of getting affected by erectile dysfunction.
- Start walking: According to several medical research reports, if one starts walking for just 30 minutes every day, their body will stay fit and healthy. It will also reduce the risk of erection problems by almost 41%. Exercising for a moderate amount of time every day will also help in restoring a man’s sexual performance.
- Maintain a healthy body weight: Obesity increases the risk of diabetes and vascular disease, which are the two major causes of erectile dysfunction. Hence, it is advisable to get rid of those extra pounds to maintain a healthy body weight.
- Practice Kegel exercises: Practicing these exercises help in making the pelvic floor muscles stronger. It aids in enhancing the rigidity of erections as well. Moreover, Kegel exercises ensure that blood does not leave the penis. Many medical studies have pointed out that if one does Kegel exercises regularly, introduces some healthy lifestyle changes, and takes prescribed medications, they can deal with erectile dysfunction effectively.
Other than the factors mentioned above, one should also limit their alcohol consumption. Additionally, it is advisable to minimize or even quit smoking.
The complications associated with erection problems can affect one’s quality of life. If not treated at the right time, this problem may invite other issues like low self-esteem, anxiety or stress, dissatisfaction with one’s sex life that may lead to embarrassment and relationship problems. Hence, if one starts experiencing any symptom of this issue, they must get an appointment with a doctor as soon as possible. Also, talking to one’s partner regarding the problem can relieve any discomfort and unease.