Erectile dysfunction (ED) is a complex medical condition that affects 18 million men in the US alone, a Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health study suggests.
Though the condition is most common in aging men and the ones that suffer from cardiovascular problems, it could also affect younger guys.
To determine whether you suffer from ED, you’ll first need to have the symptoms assessed. The condition manifests itself in several ways that are relatively easy to recognize.
The Inability To Get Or Sustain An Erection
This is the most prominent and the most troubling symptom of ED. It’s very important to distinguish between occasional erection problems and the long-term inability to get or to sustain an erection long enough for intercourse to take place.
All men experience occasional inability to have an erection. It can be caused by fatigue, workplace worries or a serious argument with a partner (you can find more about causes here). The problem is considered ED whenever the inability to get an erection continues for a prolonged period of time.
The problem could manifest itself in several distinctive ways. The onset could be slow and gradual. Alternatively, it could appear every now and then. In the second case, men will be capable of getting an erection one day and completely incapable the next.
This pattern will continue over the long run. Finally, the onset of ED could be sudden and unexpected.
Men that are suffering from ED are also prone to experiencing a range of psychological issues. Anxiety and depression happen to be two of the most common psychological symptoms.
Sexual performance and the ability to please a partner are heavily tied to a man’s self-confidence. The lack of proper erectile response can hit that confidence hard.
As a result, men will start having performance anxiety, they’ll experience a decrease in self-worth and they will potentially go down the path of depression.
Such problems are overwhelming in the case of men that remain silent about the problem and don’t seek medical assistance. Letting a partner know about the issue and talking to a physician is essential for preventing the negative feelings from getting bottled up inside.
Taking actions towards making things better will also have a motivating effect that can reduce the likelihood of psychological problems.
Other Symptoms Of Erectile Dysfunction
The problem could be accompanied to various other symptoms.
A few of the additional ED expressions include the following:
- Using hardness after an erection has been obtained
- Reduced libido
- Lack of morning erection
- Pain and abnormal penis curvature (also known as Peyronie’s disease) – this condition could be the one contributing to ED
- Ineffectiveness of sexual stimulation that was considered highly arousing before
When Is It Time To Seek Medical Assistance
Any change in your sexuality demands a medical consultation. Many people don’t take such problems seriously or they’re too embarrassed to talk about the issue.
In reality, however, erectile dysfunction could be indicative of a much more serious problem.
ED is often linked to medical conditions like heart disease, atherosclerosis and diabetes. Your doctor will run a couple of quick tests to make sure that your erection problems aren’t stemming from any of the mentioned medical conditions.
Treating the medical issue that potentially caused ED could be sufficient to see a serious improvement.
You should call your physician if you experience any pain or if the inability to get an erection is also accompanied by low libido. In such instances, you could be suffering from a hormonal imbalance.
Remember that although ED becomes more common as men age, it’s not a normal part of growing older. Many older men still get to enjoy intimacy because they were willing to seek a solution.
You don’t have to give up on sex. Medications, devices and herbal supplements can all be used to make things better and restore your ability to engage in sexual activity.