Possible ED Symptoms and Causes
With the time passing a lot of men over 40 face some sort of erectile problems. Stress, unhealthy food and bad habits make the things worse and provoke hidden diseases to show up in a form of sexual disorders. It is very important to know the signs and symptoms of these diseases. Most of them are cured when revealed at the first stages.
An erectile dysfunction diagnosis is not a man’s final verdict. In this overview, we’ll try to reveal the common causes of ED and prove that a lot of cases are treatable. In fact, the devil is not so black as he is painted.
Are Erectile Dysfunction and Impotence the Same Diseases?
Erectile dysfunction (further in the text ED) is the inability of a man to develop and hold an erection.
In this case, the erection is not strong enough to get into the vagina and provide functional sexual intercourse. The term ‘erectile dysfunction’ is applied if this condition occurs frequently (in 75% of cases) and during a long period of time. In this case, the term impotence can be also applied.
There are several reasons that cause erectile dysfunction. They involve psychological causes, the usage of certain drugs (prescribed and OTC), or problems with the hormones, nerves, and blood vessels which supply the male organ.
Other problems include problems with ejaculation, the absence of sexual desire (libido), and the lack of sensation (orgasm) during sex.
What Are the Early Symptoms of ED?
Sexual dysfunction can be manifested in different ways. What are the early symptoms of ED? Men may have erectile dysfunction if they regularly experience:
- troubles in getting an erection;
- difficulty in maintaining an erection during sexual activity;
- decreased interest in sex.
Also, there are some other sexual disorders that can be connected with ED:
- premature ejaculation;
- inability to obtain orgasm after stimulation;
- delayed ejaculation.
The temporary lack of an erection is a very common thing and it is successfully resolved. In case an ongoing erectile dysfunction progresses, it can have a great impact on partners’ self-esteem and the relationship.
Talk to your doctor if you notice any of these symptoms. He can determine your health condition to detect a cause of the disease and advise the proper treatment.
Do I Have Cause to Worry of Weak Erection?
Sexual dysfunction problems become more common as men age. Anyway, this does not mean that getting older is the end of your sexual life. ED may be also common in those with certain diseases, particular health conditions, or certain unhealthy habits.
If a man has a failure to launch for the first or second time, there is no need to worry about it. In case, such weak erections continue and the reason for them is not evident, then that is the right time to consult a doctor. Erectile dysfunction can be the first sign of a more serious problem. The primary physician could determine if there’s something bigger at play.
Here are several most typical and possible causes of weak erections:
- a man is stressed (stress remains the greatest erection killer among younger men);
- a man is a nervous wreck (blow off your anxiety in the gym, or clear your mind with yoga exercises. It all can bring you to a good shape, physically and mentally. Moreover, amplifying blood circulation is absolutely essential for a healthy and strong erection);
- a man is a heavy drinker (being a central nervous system depressant, alcohol slows down the flow of blood to the penis);
- a man is overweight (weak erection is a side effect from obesity, provoking high-blood pressure, hormonal imbalance, diabetes).
Main Causes of Erectile Dysfunction
The link between ED and some chronic diseases is most striking in diabetes. Patients who have diabetes are two times more likely to have erectile dysfunction than men who do not have this disease. Moreover, males with diabetes may suffer from this problem 10 years earlier than healthy people. Also, other conditions may cause ED such as atherosclerosis, kidney disease, and cardiovascular disease. These illnesses can decrease the blood flow and nerve impulses throughout the body.
Bad lifestyle habits can also contribute to ED and impair blood circulation. Excessive drinking, smoking, and drug abuse can ruin the blood vessels and diminish the flow of blood to the male organ. People who are overweight and those who get too little exercise become particularly vulnerable to ED.
Patients who underwent surgeries, including treatments for bladder cancer, enlarged prostate or prostate cancer can suffer from blood vessel and nerve damage in the penile area.
ED can be also a side effect caused by medication, including antidepressants, certain blood pressure drugs, and tranquilizers.
How Does Age of Male Affect Impotence?
Erectile dysfunction is never normal, however it frequently, and more severely, occurs as men age. The scientific studies report the rate of ED in different age groups:
- 15% of men younger than 60;
- 25% percent of men in their 60s;
- 30% of men of 70 and older.
Though the risk of acquiring the disease increases with age, ED is not inevitable as men get older. It can become more difficult to obtain an erection, but that doesn’t mean that men will develop ED. The rule is simple, the healthier a person is, the better is his sexual function.
ED can also happen in younger men. 1 in 4 men who are seeking their first ED treatment are less than 40 years old. Researchers suggest that lifestyle choices can be the main promoting factor for ED in youngsters.
The study analysis on ED in men under 40 shows that smoking is an ED factor in half of a men in the group under the age of 40. Diabetes is also the most common risk factor and is bound with ED in 30% of men under 40.
Do I have to worry that I will have bad erections as I get older? No, there is no direct dependence between these notions: the erection can just become a little weaker.
Impact of Low Testosterone
Testosterone is the most important sexual hormone in men. In the puberty period, testosterone boosts the size of a man’s penis, deepens his voice, and helps to build his muscles. In adulthood, it keeps a man’s bones and muscles strong and supports his interest in sex. In brief, it’s a hormone that is responsible for typical male characteristics.
After the age of 30, some men experience a gradual recession in testosterone. A reduction in sex drive sometimes follows this. So, low testosterone may be the core of erectile problems.
Your doctor will advise a special blood test to check a testosterone level. The lower level of a man’s normal testosterone range is ca 300 nanograms per deciliter. The upper limit amounts to 800 ng/dL. A lower amount can be caused by a number of factors, including:
- hormonal disorder;
- injury of the testicles;
- testicular cancer;
- chronic kidney or liver disease;
- type 2 diabetes.
Low testosterone level can cause:
- poor erection;
- drop in sex drive, loss of interest to sex;
- low sperm count.
Testosterone therapy can improve erections, as well as increase your sexual interest, mood, energy, and muscle mass. There are several ways to replace testosterone:
- tablets that stick to the gums;
- patches or gel are put on the skin;
The best method depends on your preference and the cost.
Does Stress Affect Erectile Dysfunction?
The causes of ED can be of physical or psychological nature. The success of treatment for the physical causes much depends on your health condition. Psychological factors appear to be the most common causes of erectile disorder. They are usually curable as they include anxiety and stress.
Increased stress level can also increase the risk to acquire the conditions that cause ED, such as:
- heart disease;
- high cholesterol levels;
- high blood pressure, etc.
Men’s erections involve some important bodily systems and processes. A breakdown in any of these processes can cause ED. Stress can interrupt the usual way that your brain sends messages to the male organ to allow extra blood flow.
The below listed life events can cause much stress that will lead to ED:
- relationship conflicts;
- job problems;
- fear of aging;
- financial burdens.
Ordinary treatment of psychological causes for ED involves the following therapy with your doctor. He will help to focus on major anxiety factors and try to manage them. A good psychologist will find the right solution for you from how to achieve relaxation to how to reactivate your imagination. The therapy to addressing to your subconsciousness conflicts also helps.
Libido is described as a desire to engage in sexual activity. With older age, this condition can be decreased. As a result, men who have low libido often have troubles in getting erections.
The low libido occurs due to the following conditions:
- excessive alcohol usage;
- medications (antidepressants, drugs that reduce the testosterone level);
- chronic diseases;
- relationship problems;
The treatment of low libido depends on the cause of the problem. In some cases, leading a healthier lifestyle (exercising, reducing stress, eating a healthy food, getting enough sleep) can help to solve the problem.
Other treatments may help by switching medication therapies, testosterone replacement hormone therapy, etc.
What About High Cholesterol?
Atherosclerosis can also contribute to weak erection problems, because it results in the narrowing of the blood vessels. A lot of things can lead to atherosclerosis, and high cholesterol, as well. The high level of cholesterol in the blood leads to a buildup of cholesterol in the arteries. In turn, it narrows the blood vessels.
Statins are drugs used to lower the level of cholesterol in the blood. In recent studies on rats, researchers stated an improvement of erectile function after statin treatment.
To avoid a high cholesterol level in the blood, add more food to your diet that contains soluble fiber and polyunsaturated fats. These include:
- oats and cereals;
- barley and other grains;
- vegetable oils;
- fatty fish;
- grapes, apples, strawberries.
A chronic lack of vitamin B-12 may also contribute to ED, so try to add foods rich in B-12 to your diet. You may also consider taking a B-12 supplement.
Effective Treatment of ED
For the majority of men, erectile dysfunction is effectively treated. In the modern medicine, a lot of treatment options are now available. So, your doctor will help you to decide which one is the most appropriate for you.
The physician will ask questions about your symptoms and your medical history. He will carry out a complete physical examination of your body to uncover such signs as nerve troubles or poor blood circulation. He will search for abnormalities in the genital area that could also cause erection problems.
Testosterone, cholesterol, and blood sugar level tests can reveal medical conditions that may cause ED and can be used to diagnose the problem.
Certain causes of erectile dysfunction may be easily cured by medication therapies. In case the underlying cause can not be cured, medication may still allow a satisfactory erection.
The most effective treatment for erectile dysfunction is a group of medicines known as phosphodiesterase-5 (PDE-5) inhibitors. The most widely recommended by urologists are Cialis, Levitra, Viagra, Tadapox, Super P Force, Stendra, etc. Always available at ViagraBit they help more than 75% of patients with erectile dysfunction. These pills are taken around 30-60 minutes before sex, and the duration of the effect is between 4 and 48 hours. These tablets cause the dilation of blood vessels in the male organ and cause a stable erection.
In case the testosterone level is found to be too low, then erectile disorder should be initially treated with testosterone replacement therapy.
If the above therapies are not suitable or don’t work, other treatments include:
- injections into the base of the penis (they cause flow of blood into the penis and an immediate erection);
- vacuum erection devices (a pump mechanism which creates negative pressure around the reproductive organ and encourages it to become erect);
- penile prostheses (this option involves surgery to insert the device, and so has more risks than the other treatments).
If ED is experienced by obese men a good result is shown after weight losing and exercising. Giving up smoking, reducing the use of alcohol drinks and other lifestyle changes can certainly improve erectile dysfunction problem. If ED is caused by depression psychotherapy is an effective treatment on its own or along with the combination with some drugs (antidepressants).
So, your doctor will recommend you the suitable treatment regarding your ED symptoms and check until the result is reached. Start the treatment plan now and stay healthy!