Stephanie Clarke | HealthGreatness

It’s every man’s worst nightmare: erectile dysfunction.  It affects the very essence of manhood.  The end of a sex life?    Many men feel life isn’t worth living if this function is gone.   The discovery of Viagra, the magic blue pill, seemed to be the salvation many men were looking for. 

Erectile Dysfunction (ED) is a condition many men are embarrassed to talk about.  Because of the stigma surrounding this condition and the reluctance to discuss it with their physicians, many men are unaware of the treatments available besides those magic little pills. The causes of this condition vary greatly and it’s important to know possible causes before any treatment can be effective.

Blue pill

Many causes of ED can be directly linked to lifestyle habits.  Smoking has been linked as a key cause of Erectile Dysfunction.  Smoking promotes narrowing of the arteries, which causes impotence.  Drinking alcohol to excess on a regular basis can also be a cause of ED.  Potassium deficiency has been linked to ED.  Lack of physical exercise is another behavior that contributes to ED.  All of these causes are behaviors that are in our control.  We can stop smoking and eat a healthy diet making sure potassium is an element included in the foods we choose to eat.  We can drink in moderation and get more active.  Knowing which behaviors can cause ED will enable someone to change that behavior and get back on the path to a healthy sex life.

Impotence - conceptual word cloud

There can be psychological reasons for Erectile Dysfunction.  Mental disorders and psychological problems can contribute to the problem.  Stress, anxiety and negative feelings can cause ED.  Every man knows that once you have one experience with ED, the next time you attempt to perform it will be all you’re thinking about.  This in itself will cause enough anxiety to make the situation happen again. Imagine what a problem this becomes when anxiety builds up each time sex is attempted and not successful.

Many medical conditions can affect the ability to get an erection.  Diabetes, depression, high blood pressure, Multiple Sclerosis, kidney failure and even chronic periodontitis have been linked to ED.  We all know that regular checkups with your physician are necessary to maintain a healthy lifestyle and catch any impending medical issues, but did you realize your dentist is just as important in preventing ED?  Now you do! When a medical condition is identified, your doctor may prescribe medications to manage it and these medications may interfere with the ability to maintain an erection.  Be sure to discuss any possible side effects and concerns with your doctor.

Knowing you have ED is one thing. How do you come to terms with it and what can you do to help with the problem?  We’ve already identified that altering some lifestyle habits can greatly reduce the causes of ED.  Eating right and exercising regularly can not only help with ED, but it can help with high blood pressure and diabetes making the need for erection effecting medications less likely. When these changes don’t work, there are other options to look into.  There are medicines that can be injected into the penis to aid in the ability to get an erection.  A pump can be used to draw blood into the penis for the purpose of causing an erection.  A pump with a compression ring can be fitted to the penis to maintain the erection.  Another option is surgery.  Prosthetic implants, artificial rods, can be inserted into the penis as a last resort when other options have failed.

As you can see, there is a lot of information out there about Erectile Dysfunction.  The causes are better understood and the treatments effective.  Besides the magic blue pill there are many other options available when someone is affected by ED.  The key is to talk to your doctor about your concerns.  This is no longer a subject that men need to be embarrassed about.