To the uninitiated, erectile dysfunction or ED means that a male cannot get and maintain an erection in order to have sex. Sometimes there is no swelling or fullness of the penis while at other times it may just become partly erect.
The problem used to be called being impotent. It is often caused by the narrowing of the arteries that take blood to the penis, caused by a build up of fatty deposits. It is then a medical problem.
Why do men suffer from erectile dysfunction?
ED can even serve as a warning sign for a potential cardiac event, such as a heart attack, in many men. Some cases of ED are caused by poor circulation and clogged arteries that prevent adequate blood flow. Other reasons can be obesity, metabolic syndrome, smoking and alcohol use – all common risks for heart disease.
There can be other causes for ED including: stress; depression; aging; the use of anti-depressants and other drugs; neurogenic disorders; psychological problems; surgery; kidney failure; diseases such as diabetes and multiple sclerosis (MS); and smoking. The latter causes impotence because it promotes arterial narrowing.
So how does an affected male go about finding a solution?
There are natural ways and there are pharmaceutical ways.
Interestingly, recent studies have found that those common pharmaceuticals used to treat heart failure can actually increase a man's chances of suffering from ED, making ED a tough condition to treat when cardiac problems are also involved.
Pharmaceutical drugs for ED
- Oral medications are a successful erectile dysfunction treatment for many men. They include Viagra, Cialis, and Levitra or Staxyn. All these medications work in much the same way by enhancing the effects of nitric oxide, a natural chemical your body produces that relaxes muscles in the penis. This increases blood flow and allows you to get an erection in response to sexual stimulation. They are often not a certain and immediate "quick fix" plus there are side effects that can occur including flushing, nasal congestion, headache, visual changes and stomach upset.
- Alprostadil self-injection where a fine needle is used to inject alprostadil into the base or side of the penis. Each injection generally produces an erection that lasts about an hour. Because the needle used is very fine, pain from the injection site is usually minor but many will find it difficult to inject themselves and in particular to this area. Side effects can include bleeding from the injection, prolonged erection and formation of fibrous tissue at the injection site.
- Alprostadil penis suppository that involves placing a tiny alprostadil suppository inside the penis (in the penile urethra) using a special applicator. The erection usually starts within 10 minutes, lasting between 30 to 60 minutes. There are possible side effects and these can include pain, minor bleeding in the urethra and formation of fibrous tissue inside your penis.
- Testosterone replacement therapy where hormone levels are found to be low.
Natural ways to treat ED
- Exercise with studies proving that active men who engage in regular physical activity have a lowered risk of experiencing ED.
- There is a neurotransmitter that sends a sexual message in males (and females) and it is called acetylcholine (ACH). Such ACH levels may be too low but there is a way to safely and effectively enhance ACH levels in the body by taking a choline supplement (suggested dose 1000 to 3000 mg) and a vitamin B supplement (500 to 1,500 mg).
- Finding ways to handle any high levels of stress and anxiety.
- A natural remedy is the use of gingko biloba which improves blood flow, and especially micro-circulation, helping to increase blood flow to the genitals by stimulating the action of the relaxing factor. This herb appears to be very effective in the treatment of erectile dysfunction caused by a lack of proper blood flow to the genitals.
It is very apparent that there are many side effects from big pharma company products to consider when compared with the benefits of natural remedies as a safer solution for erectile dysfunction.
- The constituents of many essential oils can provide a natural aphrodisiac and offer sexual stimulants for males, increasing the blood flow to the penis and promoting an enhanced male sexual experience.