Erectile Dysfunction is a prevalent disorder among men over the age of 40. What is Erectile Dysfunction, and what can you do about it? We are bringing you all the information you need so you know what to look for and how you can manage it once diagnosed. It’s all being shared here, so don’t miss it.
What is Erectile Dysfunction?
Erectile Dysfunction, more widely known as ED, is a common disorder with older age. As the body ages naturally, you develop a higher risk for ED. ED affects the penis of men involving the inability to get or form an erection firm enough for sex.
How Prevalent Is Erectile Dysfunction?
Erectile Dysfunction is prevalent in about ⅓ of men around the globe. It is less common to experience this disorder in the younger years as it progresses with old age. It is not uncommon for men of all ages to have some sort of trouble here and there in the bedroom. When it becomes challenging to get or maintain an erection more than half the time, it is time to talk to a doctor.
What Symptoms Might You Experience With Erectile Dysfunction?
Symptoms of ED can vary from person to person, but generally, most people will see the same signs. These consist of:
- Inability to get or maintain an erection firm enough for sex
- Loss of interest in sex
If you are experiencing some of these symptoms, check with a doctor.
What Causes Erectile Dysfunction?
The most significant contributor for men over the age of 40 is going to be age. This risk factor is not something that can be changed or altered. Aging is something totally out of your control when it comes to ED. Several other risk factors can contribute to ED in men that you do have some control over.
According to the American Urological Association, Erectile Dysfunction can result from a complex relationship between vascular, psychological, hormonal, and neurological factors. Here are ten risk factors for ED and a summary along with them.
- Stress & Anxiety
This can be a vicious cycle if you are not careful. Here’s the scenario: Say you are stressed out and have high anxiety levels. You start to notice that you are having some of the common symptoms with ED. You go to get checked out and are met with the diagnosis. This starts to cause you more stress and anxiety, learning how to handle it as an individual and your relationship. The added stress on your physical relationship creates intimacy issues, leading to additional stress and increased and or worse symptoms for your ED.
Get the picture? This is a risk factor that you can start on now to eliminate in your life – or at least decrease. No one has zero amount of stress in their life. But you can have minimal amounts of stress if you are present and aware of what sets off your stress and can combat it healthily.
Not all medications you take will have adverse reactions to your sexual health. Some can, though, and it is wise to do some research and find a medication that will work well for you. In that case, do your research when choosing prescription medication over the counter. Now, in the case that you have to have chemotherapy or some other life-saving medication- you might not have the choice for a better option for yourself. Do what you can with the knowledge and situation you are in.
Some individuals experience an injury to or around the Penis or Testicles. This can result in symptoms that are consistent with ED.
- High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure, or Hypertension as its medical term- can be a significant risk factor for ED. Fully understanding the anatomy and processes required to form an erection, it is easier to understand why Hypertension is a risk factor. Since forming an erection involves adequate blood flow to the penis, it makes logical sense that a condition that affects blood flow would also affect ED.
- Mental/ Psychological Causes
You might be surprised to know that forming an erection is not all physical. It actually has a lot to do with mental processes and psychological causes. This is why stress and anxiety play such a role in causing ED. Also affecting ED, you will find depression and PTSD on the lists as well.
- Diabetes and or Heart Disease
A study performed in Diabetes Medicine found that men with diabetes were more likely to develop ED. If a man has diabetes and does not have healthy control over his glucose levels, the higher levels will lead to damage of blood vessels and nerves through the body.
How you live your life affects all the above factors for developing this disorder. Small daily habits will affect your health positively or negatively. If you recreationally use drugs on the weekends and drink, this hurts your Testosterone levels, negatively impacting your sexual health and increasing your risk of ED. If you regularly view porn in your relationships or individually, this can adversely affect you with performance anxiety and extreme views of sex in the bedroom.
Most men do not get enough sleep. Sleep often gets put on the back burner between a job or career, family relationships, friends, tasks, and hobbies. Sometimes it is even swept under the rug not intentionally, just as a by-product of a full mind and a full schedule. Lack of sleep affects many body processes and functions, one of them being sexual health and ED.
Make it a priority to be consistent with getting seven to eight total hours of rest each night. Scientists have studied sleep for years and have found a “sweet spot” or the perfect amount of sleep that is ideal for every individual to function at their optimal level. This number is seven to seven and a half hours of sleep every day. Sleep is detrimental to mental health but also to survival.
According to a study published by the Pharmacy & Therapeutics peer-reviewed journal published in 2018, cognitive function declines quickly and rapidly after 16 hours of being awake. In turn, we suffer from being sleep deprived, and these symptoms accrue over time, declining alert and wakefulness.
Generally, sleep-deprived individuals react abnormally to a circumstance than an individual who had an adequate sleep would respond. Simply put, the less rest you get each night, the moodier, cloud headed, stressed, exhausted, irritated, and hornery you become.
What you feed your body has a significant impact on how it will perform throughout your life. Here are ten ideas on how you can positively impact your wellness and sexual health in 2022 to avoid ED:
- Include protein at each meal.
- Drink more water.
- Reduce sugar intake.
- Limit processed and packaged foods.
- Eat a variety of bright-colored fruits.
- Limit soy products.
- Cut down your consumption of soda and sugary drinks.
- Opt for vitamin supplements if you know your diet is lacking.
- Include vegetables at each meal.
- Pack your lunch to work or school.
By implementing the ten ideas above, you can make leaps and bounds in how you age and how well your body grows and develops over the years. If you are looking at the list and find that for three or more of the items listed, you do not currently practice it…Then you have a great place to start. Choose one item on the list and start practicing the habit. After two weeks, reevaluate and see if it has improved. If it seems more like second nature than something you have to set a reminder for after that period, take that as a sign that you can now move on to the next habit to conquer.
More often than not, eating better or adjusting your eating habits is the most significant obstacle for individuals who want to improve their health. Here is an example of a few snacks and meals that will point you in the right direction so you can take the stress out of it.
- Two eggs with a side of turkey sausage and sweet potato
- Greek yogurt with protein granola topped with fruit
- Breakfast smoothie complete with spinach, berries, yogurt, nuts, honey, and sweetened almond milk.
- Pita with hummus and rotisserie chicken, side of snap peas, and choice of cheese
- Turkey and avocado sandwich with a side of carrots and dip
- Loaded salad with spinach, arugula, ham, cheese, cauliflower, carrots, cucumbers, tomatoes, and choice of dressing
- Apple with almond butter
- String cheese with almonds
- Turkey jerky with an orange
- Roasted chicken with baked potato and side of broccoli
- Grilled steak with spaghetti squash and side of green beans
- Spaghetti with meatballs, side of peas and garlic bread
You do not have to start right out of the gate just eating the above meals. These are more of a guideline to show you how easy and stress-free the adjustment can be for you. Whole foods, foods with healthy macronutrients and micronutrients, have been shown to delay the onset of ED or make symptoms better. Start adjusting your diet little by little every day, and before you know it, your health will improve drastically.
Moving your body is beneficial to all processes and functions you need to survive. According to the National Institute on Aging, taking it easy has more to do with the loss of ability to do things when you grow older, more so than the aging process alone. In other words, inactivity can do more harm than good if you do not exercise.
Exercising regularly can improve balance, lessen the risk of falling, improve sleep, more energy, reduce stress and anxiety, improve cognitive function, decrease blood pressure, reduce depression, boost your mood, and increase bone density and strength.
If you are not a regular gym-goer or find that you struggle to exercise, don’t fret. You do not need to decide today how, when, and where you will work out the rest of your life. But you do need to sit yourself down and find time in your schedule a few days each week, where you can move your body for 30-45 minutes and get your heart pumping. Here are some tips to make it easier:
- Choose something you love doing.
- Get an accountability partner.
- Pick a consistent time every day or every week.
- Set goals that excite you but are attainable for you.
- Have fun.
The important thing with getting and staying active is having fun. If you don’t enjoy it, the chances of sticking with it will be slim.
Can Erectile Dysfunction Be Reversed?
Erectile Dysfunction can not disappear completely, although the symptoms experienced can decrease or be very insignificant or minimal. By attending to the habits listed above in this article, you can drastically reduce your symptoms if you already have ED.
What Should You Do If You Think You Have Erectile Dysfunction?
If you find that you have ED, there is help. Take an inventory of the symptoms you have been experiencing and set up an appointment with a doctor. You can discuss your symptoms, sexual history, relationships, etc. You might need to complete a set of blood work and a physical if you choose.
Visit Genesys Men’s Health For Your Erectile Dysfunction Needs
We have enjoyed sharing all the information here on what Erectile Dysfunction is and what you can do about it. We hope it has been informational and helpful to you reading this article. If you find that you may be experiencing symptoms of ED, we are here to help. Our office is located in Sandy, Utah. Come by and visit with our friendly staff team, or give us a call via phone at (801) 671-7465. Contact us today!