Erectile dysfunction is no laughing matter. Whether a man is 20 or 70, the realization that he just can’t get it up can be an awfully big downer. Especially when you take into consideration that many men conflate their sense of manhood with their penis, a weak or non-existent erection can do more than just ruin a night’s fun, it can be a big blow to one’s ego as well.
So what do you do when your penis goes limp and refuses to go erect again? First, take a deep breath. Losing one erection or having one night when you can’t perform doesn’t automatically mean that you’re impotent or have erectile dysfunction. The penis is a complicated and sensitive organ, and a lot of different things play a role in its function. Your nutrition, your energy level, how much sleep you’ve been getting, the health of your relationship with your sexual partner and your mental state can all have a strong effect on the strength of your erections and your libido. With so many different factors in the mix, simple probability states that something will go wrong a handful of times in any given man’s life.
So if you find that your penis won’t respond, don’t worry too much. Just try to relax, and try to let go of any feelings of pressure that you may experience. Many men pressure themselves to perform, whether because they want to wow a new partner or because they want to make their anniversary special for their partner. As much as possible, let go of this sort of thinking and just let things happen.
Pressure, anxiety, guilt, embarrassment and fear all are enemies of a strong erection. Remember that it isn’t the end of the world if your erection doesn’t come back. Sexual caresses can feel good, even without an erection, and there are plenty of things you can do to please your partner that don’t require an erection (or your penis at all, for that matter). Sometimes simply removing negative thoughts and letting go of the need to perform is enough. You may find that your erection returns of its own accord.
If this doesn’t work, you may find that simply waiting a day or so will solve the problem. Emotional problems can sometimes be hard to banish at will. Also, sometimes your body (and penis) simply has an off day. Your erection may be soft today, but there’s a good chance that you penis will be ready and raring to go in a day or two.
If a little bit of time doesn’t help, and if you begin to notice a pattern of difficulty in achieving or keeping an erection, then you could be suffering from at least mild erectile dysfunction. If this is the case, know that you’re not alone. A lot of men experience erectile difficulty: experts suggest that as many as 30 million American men have some form of erectile dysfunction. Also, know that erectile dysfunction is often treatable or manageable.
There are a lot of things that men can do to help improve the health of their penis and the quality of their erection. Put most simply, the penis is a part of the body. Its health and function cannot be divorced from the health and function of the body. In general, the healthier the body, the healthier the erection.
Many men find that increasing their level of exercise helps to combat erectile dysfunction. Studies have indicated that certain forms of weightlifting can help to increase a man’s testosterone levels. Testosterone is the main male sex hormone, and it plays an integral role in the function of the penis. An increase in testosterone often improves a man’s erectile quality.
Exercise can also benefit one’s penis in other ways. Having large amounts of fat can actually increase a man’s estrogen levels. Although most people think of estrogen as a female hormone, every man has at least some amount of estrogen in his system. However, having too much of this hormone causes problems. High levels of estrogen can inhibit the function of testosterone, which can in turn contribute to erectile dysfunction.
A third benefit of exercise is that it helps to improve one’s cardiovascular health. Most men have been warned about the effects of inactivity on their heart health. Men who exercise regularly are less likely to experience the arterial plaque build-up that can lead to heart attacks. However, not all men know that cardiovascular health is just as important to their penis.
During an erection, chambers within the penis fill with blood. This causes the increase in size and rigidity that we call an erection. However, if the veins surrounding the penis are unhealthy or clotted, the amount of blood flow will be reduced, resulting in a smaller and softer erection.
Because the blood vessels leading to the penis are smaller than those which surround the heart, a man’s penis may show signs of poor cardiovascular health before the heart does. In fact, erectile dysfunction sometimes actually functions as a sort of early warning sign for future heart issues. Thankfully, regular cardiovascular exercise can help to protect both your heart health and your sexual health.
Exercise isn’t the only important thing, though. It is also important to get proper nutrition. Eating healthy, low-fat meals and maintaining healthy cholesterol levels can also help to improve penile function. Men with erectile dysfunction may also want to consider taking some sort of multivitamin, as vitamin and mineral deficiencies can also sometimes manifest themselves in a weaker erection.
Proper sleep is also important for overall health and, by extension, erectile health. Without sufficient sleep, a man’s body may simply decide that it doesn’t have enough energy for a strong erection. Also, studies have shown that men who get a sufficient amount of high quality sleep tend to have higher testosterone levels than men who don’t make sleep a priority. Although low testosterone levels are not responsible for all cases of erectile dysfunction, there are many cases where an increase in testosterone can mean a stronger erection.
Smoking and excessive alcohol consumption can also have a negative effect on a man’s erection. Quitting smoking and limiting how much you drink will help your erectile health, and it will also help you to be healthier and happier.
Although your physical health is extremely important to your penis, your mental health is equally important. In today’s world, a lot of men are extremely stressed out. Stress is not conducive to a healthy erection nor to optimal sexual pleasure. Chronic stress can even lead to unhealthy changes in hormone levels and to overall health deterioration. Men should try to find ways to relax and de-stress. Deep breathing, going on walks, listening to soothing music and exercising can all be helpful. There are a large number of different ways that a man can de-stress as long as he takes the time to do so.
As a side note, taking time to exercise, to eat properly and to de-stress aren’t just good ideas for men who suffer from erectile dysfunction. These are also excellent ways for men to retain optimal sexual function. The better your habits are, the more likely you are to keep your sex life healthy and active, even as you age.
Many men with erectile dysfunction find that they can completely solve their problem just by making lifestyle changes. However, there are still some men who find that their erectile difficulties persist, even after improving their health habits. Thankfully, there are a number of different herbal enhancers on the market which can help a man to experience stronger erections. If you are experiencing problems achieving or sustaining an erection, you may want to speak with your doctor or your local naturopath. He or she will be able to run some tests and help you to know what the cause of your problems is. If necessary, he or she can also give you a herbal remedy which will help with your erections.
Your doctor can also help you to know whether your erectile difficulties could stem from a medication that you are currently taking. A number of prescription drugs have the potential to interfere with a man’s erectile quality. If you find that one of your medications is causing your erectile difficulties, your doctor may be able to help you look for a drug which doesn’t affect your sexual health.
Although erectile dysfunction can be a difficult and potentially embarrassing problem, men who suffer from it should remember that it isn’t the end of the world. It isn’t even necessarily the end of their sexual careers. With lifestyle changes and with the judicious use of herbal enhancers, erectile dysfunction can be combated and overcome.