Do You Know the Facts Behind Erectile Dysfunction?
Allison Bush | May 17th 2014 Sep 6th 2017
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True or False: ED is a normal part of the aging process.
While it is true that ED is more common as men age, it is not necessarily part of the normal aging process. ED is a medical problem and can impact a man's overall feeling of well-being, no matter what his age. ED should and can be treated whether it occurs at 20 or at 90.
True or False: The impact of ED is only felt by men.
ED is felt by both the man and his partner. ED can create feelings of inadequacy and low self-esteem and lead to depression. Intimate relationships often suffer, especially if the situation is not addressed; the partner can feel unloved or feel it is somehow their fault, creating relationships problems. When self-esteem is impacted, it can cause difficulties in other relationships as well, with problems at work, with extended family, or with friends.
True or False: Wearing tight underwear does not cause ED.
Tight underwear has been associated with infertility because it can increase the temperature of the testicles, but there is no medical research showing an association between tight underwear and ED.
True or False: ED only occurs in older men.
ED is more common in older men, but it can occur in men of any age. Certain medical conditions, such as obesity, diabetes, kidney disease, high blood pressure, or heart disease, may increase a man's risk of developing ED. Smoking has also been found to be a risk factor, and some medications can cause ED too.
True or False: Men with ED still have sexual desire.
Sexual desire is hormonal, and so it is not normally impacted by ED. Some may fear sex or avoid having sexual intercourse because they are afraid they will not be able to have an erection, but ED does not directly impact sexual desire.
True or False: Oral medications, such as Viagra, are the only treatment for ED.
Lifestyle changes, such as losing weight and quitting smoking, are normally recommended before oral medications. Identifying and treating any underlying physical conditions should be the first line of treatment. Oral medications help many men but do not work for everyone.
True or False: Having trouble having an erection doesn't always signal ED.
Men, despite popular belief, can't have sex at a moment's notice. Fatigue, personal problems, anxiety, worry, and other problems can affect a man's ability to have sex. In addition, just as with women, some days men are just "not in the mood." Believing that men can have sex at any time adds to the pressure to perform.