What are the physical causes?
Physical causes for erection issues include:
- Alcohol intoxication and regular alcohol usage
- Recreational drugs
- Tobacco use
- Excessive physical fatigue
- Stroke or heart disease – all circulatory issues
- Problems with the prostate or bladder
- Low testosterone levels, usually due to endocrine problems
- Liver or kidney disease or failure
- Spinal-cord injuries
- Surgery around or near the genitals
- Regular high psychological stress
All of these causes and more have been found to be directly responsible for causing E.D.
How is erectile dysfunction diagnosed?
Your doctor is the best way to tell. They can give you a physical exam and ask enough questions about what you are doing that might be causing the issue. Blood and urine samples may be tested for diseases and disorders. Other tests may also be needed. Your doctor will determine which tests are right for you.
A simple test is to ask if you have difficulty gaining or sustaining an erection that is satisfactory for sex more than 75% of the time. If so, you likely have a form of E.D. Less than that, or having intermittent problems means that it is not as likely to be E.D, or that you have a borderline case that is much more easily treated.
Can medications cause E.D?
Yes, some medicines, such as those for high blood pressure or depression, can cause E.D as a side effect. Pills used to treat stomach ulcers or heartburn may also be at fault. For details about any medications you are taking, see your physician. They may e able to change the doses or change to a different medication that will not cause E.D.
Can negative feelings cause erectile dysfunction?
Yes, it is true that number of emotional experiences can cause erectile dysfunction. There is more than one mental cause. Some more common include the following.
Stress from daily life, family, and work is probably the most common cause. A close second would be relationship problems, which have a strong influence on how sexually responsive a man is able to be. Even mild depression alters brain chemistry, and can negatively affect the hormones that trigger erections.
Nervousness is a major mental influence. Previous experiences with impotence tend to have a reinforcing effect. Once a man has had one negative experience, others tend to follow. Self consciousness can also cause temporary impotence. Finally, many men have difficulty keeping an erection while they believe their partner is thinking something negative about them.
What treatments are available?
The cure depends very much on the cause, because there are so many different sources that can cause erection problems. There are many ways to treat E.D and new methods are constantly being created. If one thing doesn’t work, something else might. However, some of the more common treatments include:
- Taking pills to treat E.D, either pharmaceutical drugs or herbal remedies (which have been remarkably effective in many cases).
- Injecting chemicals known as prostaglandins (pras-ta-GLAND-ins) directly into the tissues of your penis.
- Using a vacuum pump to help pump the penis full with blood, then holding it there by using a snug (but not tight) rubber ring fitted around the base of the penis.
- Having a surgical procedure to implant a device into the penis. This is a highly risky procedure, and is best used only at last resort once all other methods have failed. Surgery can also be used to repair blood vessels, and pump more blood into the penis.
Physicians will typically not start with things like surgery. They usually begin by suggesting changes in lifestyle, moving on to pills, then pumps, and finally at last resort, surgery.
What about natural (herbal) treatments?
The cure depends very much on the cause, because there are so many different sources that can cause erection problems. There are many ways to treat E.D and new methods are constantly being invented, but some of the longest standing treatments have been around for literally thousands of years.
What natural herbs are good for treating impotence?
There are a great many herbs and herbal components that can have a dynamic effect on the genitals. Some of these include the following.
Ginseng is a herb used for at least 2000 years to improve libido, counter impotence, relieve stress, improve stamina, and regulate blood pressure. Ginseng extracts have been medically proven to improve sperm production in men and are widely used for treating impotence.
Muira Pauma has a reputation in its native South America and now around the world. A study conducted in France concluded that, out of 262 male patients experiencing low libido and erection problems, more than half of the men reported that the of Muira Puama extract "had a dynamic effect" and was beneficial to their condition.
Ginkgo is known to improve peripheral circulation (flow to body extremities), oxygen flow, and to increase blood flow to the genitals, improving sexual function and the power of the erection. A recent scientific study showed that 78% of men with non-medically caused impotence problems (impotence not caused by prescription drugs) reported significant improvement, and totally without negative side effects.
Astragalus has been used extensively in Chinese medicine, and had been the subject of numerous clinical studies at Chinese institutions.
The list goes on. Contact your local herbalist, or check the following link (www.penispillsinfo.com) for more information.
Is ED connected to age?
Yes and no. There is a correlation, but men develop E.D more because of failing health, rather than simple aging. It doesn't have to be a part of getting older. You may need more direct stimulation as you age (more touching) to get a ‘suitable’ erection. You will probably also need to take longer breaks between erections during a night of sexual activity. But our bodies are actually programmed to allow sexual activity well into old age, and it is only our failing health that causes the erection issues, and not the age itself. Kind of gives you an incentive to stay healthy, doesn’t it?
Can young men suffer from it?
Yes, but this is relatively uncommon. Because younger men are generally healthier, and have higher levels of testosterone in their systems, they tend to have fewer incidences of problems. There are a number of psychological reasons that can cause E.D, and these are more commonly found in younger men. See below for a listing of the more common physical and psychological causes of erection problems.
If I have diabetes, will I get E.D?
Not necessarily, but there is a connection between blood sugar problems and erection issues. Estimates show that around 50% of men with diabetes will experience some erectile dysfunction. Men with diabetes also tend to also develop E.D much sooner than others might – possibly 10 to 15 years earlier in life. Over age 55, around 70% of men with diabetes begin having difficulties with erections, and above age 70, this number swells (no pun intended) to as high as 95%. Regaining circulatory health and increasing testosterone production are two goals that can lessen the effects.
Who do I talk to?
It’s not an easy thing to accept that you have E.D. It can be even more difficult to talk about it, especially with your partner. But it is important to talk about any problems you may be having at least with your doctor. You may not have to directly discuss E.D, but getting a background on why you might be developing sexual problems is important to getting treatment. If you can, you should discuss the basics with your sexual partner, even if all you say is that you have ‘something you need to deal with’. Long discussions aren’t necessary, but short conversations are helpful to avoid misinterpretations and hurt feelings with your partner.
E.D Q&A source questions – basics
September 19, 2005