Premature ejaculation is likely one of the most common sexual health issue among men with estimates worldwide prevalence as high as 30% among adult men.
But instead of being in despair about your own case, you should first get reliable information about it and, in the process, make smarter decisions about your own case.
What Is Premature Ejaculation?
Healthcare experts generally agree that premature ejaculation happens when a man climaxes – ejaculates – sooner than either he or his partner would like.
Keep in mind that doctors and patients define it in different ways with the former using the following diagnostic criteria in determining premature ejaculation as an actual cause for concern:
- You always or almost always ejaculate within one minute after vaginal or anal penetration
- You cannot delay ejaculation always or almost always all the time
- You feel frustrated and distressed about your condition so much so that you tend to avoid sex, even any form of physical intimacy
If you don’t meet all three of these aspects, then you probably have little to no cause for concern. Even when you have alternating periods of premature and normal ejaculation, you have natural variable premature ejaculation, a common condition as well in men.
What Are Its Symptoms?
Premature ejaculation is characterized by a single notable symptom – the inability to prolong an erection and delay ejaculation for more than a minute after vaginal or anal penetration.
This can happen in masturbation, too, although penetration is the most common situation where premature ejaculation happens.
You can read more about symptoms here
What Are Its Causes?
The exact cause behind premature ejaculation has not yet been identified. But healthcare experts agree that it is a complicated condition that involves complicated interactions between physiological and psychological factors including:
- Experiences, situations and feelings (e.g., guilt) that contribute to a hurried climax
- Erectile dysfunction
- Anxiety especially about sexual pleasure and performance
- Personal including relationship problems
- Underlying health issues including abnormal brain chemicals and hormone levels
- Abnormal reflexes in the reproductive system especially the ejaculatory system
- Thyroid issues
- Infections in the urethra or prostate
- Nerve damage
If you would like to know more about causes in details, please see this post
What Are Its Risk Factors?
You may likely have two or more of the following risk factors (i.e., increase risk of premature ejaculation):
- Erectile dysfunction
- Health problems, such as heart disease
- Stress, especially emotional and mental stress that contribute to anxiety
Emphasis must be made that premature ejaculation is closely tied to penile erection. The latter, in turn, is influenced by a wide range of physiological and psychological factors, such as cardiovascular issues.
What Are Its Complications?
Fortunately, premature ejaculation per se does not have physical complications, not even in terms of increasing your risks for medical conditions. Instead, you should be more concerned about the possible medical causes for premature ejaculation that requires prompt medical attention.
But you may likely encounter significant mental problems including strain on your relationship. Your partner may be frustrated with your sexual performance, which can affect other areas of your life.
What To Do Before Your Doctor’s Appointment?
Now that you have decided to seek your doctor’s opinion, you should get ready for the appointment. Here are a few things that you can do:
- Write down your symptoms including their onset, frequency, and duration; your sexual history; and your medical history.
- Write down the questions that you want to ask your doctor, such as the possible causes; recommended tests and treatments; and informational resources.
Be as honest as possible about your answers since these can assist your doctor in making the right solutions for your case. You should not be embarrassed since premature ejaculation is a common problem with as many as 1 in 3 men reporting their experiences with it.
What Are The Treatment Options?
Fortunately, premature ejaculation is treatable. Your doctor can recommend the following techniques:
Behavioral techniques including masturbation an hour before sex; squeeze technique; and sex avoidance for a while. These techniques are usually combined with other methods, such as counselling, for better results.
Topical anesthetics that reduce penile sensation and, hence, delay ejaculation. You can choose from cream and spray anesthetics containing lidocaine but you are well-advised to seek your doctor’s advice first.
These products can have side effects, such as temporary loss of sensation in the penile area, which counteract whatever benefits there may be. The female partners of users have also reported similar loss of sensation in their genitals a few minutes after penetration, which reduces sexual pleasure.
Oral medications, including antidepressants and analgesics, and dietary supplements. If you want to try the dietary supplementation route, you have to choose products with natural, safe and effective ingredients, preferably products offered by reliable manufacturers.
In case of prescribed oral medications, be sure to discuss their pros and cons with your doctor, too.
Counselling, which is also known as talk therapy, involves discussing your sexual health issues including anxiety about your sexual performance with a psychologist.
This is an effective method, too, particularly when your premature ejaculation is likely caused by psychological factors instead of physical illness or injury. You will also be taught about possible techniques that can be used to prolong your erection, such as the 7-9 method.
Now that you know these things, you should act on them as soon as possible!