Ed Causes and Treatments for 2019

Erectile dysfunction is often portrayed as an issue for older men, but it affects more of us (both younger and older) than we realize. Despite its prevalence, most men don’t realize what causes ED or even how to treat it. It’s time to stop avoiding the ED discussion and learn exactly what causes ED and what to do about it.

Causes of Erectile Dysfunction

Though many ED disease symptoms are quite obvious, there are multiple reasons a man may be experiencing ED. ED can be caused by physiological or psychological reasons, depending on the situation.

The following are physiological causes of ED:

  • Heart Disease
    Persistent ED is often a symptom of heart disease. As heart disease affects the lining of the blood vessels, this often makes it difficult for men with heart disease to maintain an erection.
  • High Blood Pressure
    Blood pressure plays a major role in ED due to the medications used to treat high blood pressure. These medications often contribute to ED.
  • High Cholesterol 
    High cholesterol can damage one’s blood vessels, resulting in ED disease symptoms. Ironically, popular ED medications used for treating high cholesterol have led to improvements in performance for men with erectile dysfunction.
  • Diabetes 
    Diabetes can result in ED due to how a diabetic’s body produces hormones. While diabetics are deficient in insulin, testosterone is another hormone that is often underproduced, resulting in ED for certain diabetics.
  • Metabolic Syndrome
    Metabolic syndrome is often linked to ED. This cluster of conditions referred to as metabolic syndrome can lead to stroke, diabetes, and heart disease.
  • Parkinson’s Disease
    Parkinson’s disease is associated with ED, as most men with Parkinson’s go on to develop ED. Similarly, the medicine used for treating Parkinson’s has been proven to worsen ED.
  • Multiple Sclerosis 
    ED is a common condition for men that have been diagnosed with MS. Certain studies show that 91% of individuals with MS will experience ED later on in life.
  • Alcoholism
    ED is linked to chronic alcoholism. Alcohol has been shown to decrease sexual performance, just as chronic alcoholism can lead to permanent nerve damage.
  • Enlarged Prostate/Prostate Cancer
    Certain treatments for an enlarged prostate or prostate cancer can result in ED.

Psychological ED Causes and Treatments

Just as physiological conditions can lead to ED, certain psychological issues can lead to ED. The following conditions make it difficult to maintain an erection:

  • Stress 
    While sex often reduces stress, men that are already stressed out may find that they have difficulty in maintaining or achieving an erection.
  • Depression or Anxiety
    Just as stress can affect one’s ability to maintain an erection, depression, and anxiety can have the same effect. Certain studies show that these conditions are likely the most common reasons for ED.
  • Relationship Issues 
    Men that are experiencing relationship issues with their partner may find that they are unable to achieve or maintain an erection. While nothing else may be wrong with them, the emotions at play can result in ED.
  • Pornography 
    While the effects of pornography are still being studied, excessive use of pornography has been linked to ED. Men that use porn regularly may find that they experience porn-related ED.

ED Treatments

Erectile dysfunction is disconcerting, but it isn’t treatable. While each treatment is dependent on ED causes and treatments, the following methods can be used to treat erectile dysfunction:

1. ED Medications

There are several over-the-counter and prescription medications that can be used for treating ED. The more common medications are Viagra (sildenafil), Cialis (tadalafil), and Levitra (vardenafil):

  • Sildenafil
    Known as Viagra, sildenafil is easily the most popular ED medication today. Fast-acting, sildenafil improves erections in 30 – 60 minutes after ingestion.
  • Tadalafil
    Tadalafil or Cialis is a long-lasting ED treatment. Cialis works around 60 minutes after ingestion and is used to improve erections over a period of 36 hours or more. Cialis is often dubbed the “weekend” treatment for ED.
  • Vardenafil 
    Similar to sildenafil, vardenafil or Levitra works 30 – 60 minutes after ingestion. Lasting longer than sildenafil, men can expect vardenafil to improve their directions for 5 – 8 hours after use.

2. Psychological Treatment

For men that are experiencing ED as a result of psychological issues aren’t likely to benefit from medication for ED. The anxiety, depression, stress, and similar conditions resulting in ED must be addressed in order to improve sexual performance.

The following treatments should be used to treat ED caused by psychological factors:

  • Counseling
    Counseling can help an individual identify the psychological factors leading to ED. These include depression, anxiety, stress, and similar issues that affect the way one views sex.
  • Sex Therapy
    Sex therapy helps individuals with ED and other sexual performance issues work through their ED-related nervousness.
  • Sexual Performance Anxiety Therapy 
    Similar to sex therapy, this specific type of therapy focuses on improving sexual performance by working to build one’s confidence during sex.

Natural Treatments for ED

Many men don’t realize how much of an impact their lifestyle choices have on their sexual performance. There are myriad of natural treatments for ED:

  • Panax Ginseng
    Known as herbal Viagra, Panax ginseng or red ginseng has been proven to be an effective treatment for ED. Men with metabolic syndrome and higher levels of lipids in their bloodstream tend to benefit the most from this natural solution.
  • Rhodiola Rosea
    According to certain studies, Rhodiola Rosea can significantly improve one’s sexual performance by reducing fatigue and restoring energy levels.
  • DHEA 
    DHEA or dehydroepiandrosterone is produced by the body’s adrenal glands. This hormone can be converted into testosterone or estrogen. Certain studies show that men experiencing ED have lower levels of DHEA. With DHEA supplements, men with ED can improve their sexual performance.
  • L-arginine 
    L-arginine, an amino acid that is naturally present in the body, plays an important role in the body’s ability to maintain an erection. This amino acid is used to make nitric oxide, which helps to relax blood vessels—an important part of achieving an erection. Taken as a supplement, L-arginine can reverse the effects of ED.

Other Treatments for ED

While medication and therapy can be used to effectively treat ED, there are other solutions including surgery, prostheses, and more:

  • Surgery
    Vascular surgery is another effective method for treating ED. This surgery helps to improve the blood flow to one’s penis, resulting in firmer erections.
  • Alprostadil
    This injectable medication works to expand one’s blood vessels, making it easier to achieve and maintain erections.
  • ED Treatment Devices
    VCDs or Vacuum Constriction Devices are essentially “penis pumps” that are used to improve ED.
  • Penile Implants
    Prostheses or penile implants can be used as ED treatments for men with mobility issues or spinal injuries.

While erectile dysfunction is more common than most men are willing to admit, each man with ED experiences it differently. If you are dealing with ED, it’s best to consult a medical professional to find the right treatment option for your situation.