EVERY now and again, things in the bedroom “flop” before they’ve barely gotten started.
For some men – including young and old – it can become a repeated problem that impacts on quality of life.
Erectile dysfunction is defined as “trouble getting or keeping an erection that's firm enough for sex”.
A new survey suggests problems in this department are far more common in young men than originally thought, despite typically occurring in men over the age of 40.
Over 5,000 participants were surveyed by Lloyds Pharmacy around the topic of "erection problems".
More than one in four men (27 per cent) suffer erection problems, including 22 per cent of young men aged between 25 and 34.
Erection problems were most frequently reported by those aged between 65 and 74 years of age (25 percent) and least in those 18-24 (three per cent).
Lloyds Pharmacy described “erection problems” as “when your penis doesn’t get or stay erect when you’d like it to”.
When should you see a doctor?
Erection problems can come at the most inconvenient of times.
But just because you had difficutly one night, it doesn't mean you need to rush to see a doctor.
There is one key reason for when you should see a doctor about erection problems – when it happens regularly, or every time you go to have sex.
Dr Sameer Sanghvi, Clinical Technology Lead at LloydsPharmacy Online Doctor, said: “Most men occasionally experience erectile problems [EPs].
"Occasional EPs are nothing to worry about. If you regularly suffer with EPs, you should see your GP.
Dr Sameer believes that people shouldn’t suffer in silence when it comes to erection problems.
“EPs are not as big a problem as people make them out to be. There is a stigma attached to EPs in public discourse, but there need not be.
“EPs are common. It is time to raise discussion about the issue of raising it.”
Causes of erection problems
It can be extremely frustrating when you struggle to “keep it up”, and sometimes the more angry you get, the worse the problem is.
The causes of erectile dysfunction generally fall into two categories – physical and psychological.
Psychological reasons may be harder to spot. They include stress, depression, anxiety, alcohol use, or worries about sex performance, even with a long-standing partner.
Physically, there may be less blood flow to the penis, nerve damage or narrowing of the blood vessels.
Conditions such as diabetes, obesity, smoking, high blood pressure and high cholesterol are all risk factors for physical causes of erectile dysfunction.
In fact, sometimes, erectile dysfunction may be the first clear signal that you have an underlying condition.
Dr Sameer said: “Persistent EPs may be a sign of an underlying health condition, so it’s always worth seeking proper medical advice.”
Treatment for erection problems will be based on the causes.
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