Erectile Dysfunction | 4 Natural Solutions for Improved Sexual Function

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Millions of men worldwide have erectile dysfunction (ED) and impotence. It can be frustrating and embarrassing and hurt the quality of life. Also, it could point to heart problems, psychological issues, or bad habits.

Discover more about what's behind erectile dysfunction and what you can do about it.

RELATED: What Blood Pressure Medication Does Not Cause Erectile Dysfunction?

Erectile Dysfunction | What Men Need to Know

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What Is Erectile Dysfunction?

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Erectile dysfunction (ED) is when men have difficulty getting or maintaining an erection.

Some men can still get an erection sometimes.

Others might not be able to keep an erection during sex.

In other cases, men might not get an erection at all.

Having trouble getting an erection or maintaining it sometimes is normal. But, if it happens often, it might be best to consult with a urologist.

Leaving ED untreated could get in the way of your life.

And even your sex life – which is integral to a happy and productive life and blooming relationships.


It may also allow the root cause of your ED to progress, worsen, and pose a more significant threat to your health.

Complications of erectile dysfunction may include:

  • an unsatisfying sex life
  • an unfulfilling and stifling relationship
  • low self-esteem and other mental health conditions
  • difficulty having children

Embarrassing as it may seem, know that many men go through the same problem. An estimated 30 million American men deal with erectile dysfunction.

The first step to eliminating the problem is a consultation with your doctor.

What Makes an Erection Happen?

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Many factors come into play to make an erection happen.

It begins with a sexual desire, which sets off a series of processes that direct strong blood flow to your penis. It involves:

  • hormones
  • blood vessels
  • nerves
  • muscles

So with trouble in these areas, it might be hard to get erect.

So what happens when you get erect?

When aroused, your nerves and vessels release nitric oxide (NO). NO relaxes your muscles and allows a surge of blood to enter your penis. The blood pressure in your penis causes it to harden, and we call this an erection.

The blood pressure in your penis causes it to harden, and we call this an erection.

The veins in your penis hold on and trap the blood inside, keeping you erect.

After ejaculation or post-arousal, your veins open up again and allow blood to flow out.

Soon after, your penis becomes flaccid until the next time you become aroused.

It takes a healthy mind and body to make an erection happen. So what could go wrong?

Erectile Dysfunction Causes

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Because an erection is a complex mind-body process, many factors could lead to ED.

An unhealthy lifestyle and bad habits could lead to erectile dysfunction, including:

  • obesity
  • not getting enough exercise, living a sedentary lifestyle
  • cigarette smoking
  • excessive alcohol drinking
  • using illegal drugs

ED may be a symptom of a chronic or medical condition, like:

  • High Blood Pressure (hypertension)
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Heart Disease
  • Diabetes
  • Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD)
  • Peyronie's disease (build-up of plaque in the penis, bending the penis over time)
  • Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
  • Some injuries or surgeries

Some medications could also keep you from getting hard, including:

  • medicines to lower blood pressure
  • appetite suppressants
  • sedatives
  • antidepressants
  • antiandrogens
  • ulcer medicines

Psychological trouble could contribute to erectile dysfunction as it is a mind-body function.

  • stress
  • low self-esteem
  • guilt about sex
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • fear of sexual failure

Erectile Dysfunction Symptoms

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Erection issues are typical. But, if they become a consistent problem, it's time to call the doctor.

Signs of symptoms of erectile dysfunction may include:

  • difficulty getting hard during sex
  • getting erect, but not long enough for sex
  • inability to get an erection
  • low sexual libido

Erectile Dysfunction Treatment

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After an accurate diagnosis, your doctor will understand how to treat erectile dysfunction.

A doctor's visit may involve a:

  • psychological exam
  • interview about your medical history
  • physical exam
  • ultrasound
  • urine tests

A specialist may administer erectile dysfunction tests, such as:

  • nocturnal erection test
  • injection test

Depending on your diagnosis, your treatment may include:

  • lifestyle changes
  • psychological counseling
  • oral medication (or a modification in your current prescription)
  • injectable medicines
  • suppositories

A healthier lifestyle is key to a healthier body. Adopt a more active lifestyle and feed yourself more healthful foods.

Size matters. With obesity being one of the risk factors for ED, your doctor may ask you to work towards a healthier waistline. Obesity could cause ED—or make it worse.

If you're a smoker or heavy drinker, take this as a sign to stop.

Medication and treatment may target conditions that include erectile dysfunction. Also, improve your vascular health, or boost nitric oxide's effects.

Psychological help may also help you overcome issues that contribute to erection issues.

It's difficult to talk about erectile dysfunction. But talking about it with your doctor is the best first-line treatment to get you on the way to recovery. You might also uncover more dangerous conditions that were causing your ED.

How to Prevent Erectile Dysfunction

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Taking care of your body is the best way to prevent impotence or erectile dysfunction.

Start making healthier choices today.

Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Aerobic and anaerobic exercise may be a great way to improve an erection.

Exchange your steak for some fish. Recent research shows that the Mediterranean diet can improve ED. Scientists think the Mediterranean diet is an ideal choice for vascular health.

Trim the fat. Obesity is one of the risk factors for ED and might even make your ED worse and more challenging to manage. Work with your doctor to achieve a healthier waistline. Discuss which diets work for you. And look into the Mediterranean diet.

Do kegel exercises. Some research says that stronger pelvic floor muscles might help you get hard and stay hard. Learn more about kegel exercises here.


Is Erectile Dysfunction Permanent?

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In most cases, erectile dysfunction is curable. But, the treatment depends on the underlying cause.

Explore natural remedies and talk to a sex therapist or psychologist.

If medication or psychological counseling does not help, discuss surgery with your urologist.

There are also devices and tools like penis pumps that can produce an erection.

The best treatment will depend on the underlying cause. Book a doctor's appointment to win half the battle.

Check out this video to find out more about erectile dysfunction:

Please consult with your doctor and get to the bottom of it.

A healthier diet and lifestyle could also help prevent conditions that could lead to ED.

What are you doing to prevent erectile dysfunction?

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Is erectile dysfunction getting you down? Please share your experience with us. We'd love to hear from you!

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