Erectile dysfunction can be caused by various issues that can be whittled down to 3 categories. The first category includes physical issues like illnesses and injury. The second category comprises mental problems like anxiety. The third category includes a mix of both mental and physical issues.
Many illnesses that cause erectile dysfunction happens in places that aren’t close to your genitalia. This means you’ll need to visit the doctor for a proper diagnosis. It’s so because getting the wrong treatment could worsen an erectile problem.
High blood pressure (hypertension) causes erectile dysfunction. It occurs by damaging blood vessels that transport blood to your penis. This damage can make your blood vessels thick, and it may lead to them getting fractured.
Hypertension can also lead to your endothelium in the arteries getting damaged, and this will result in atherosclerosis. The endothelium is a lining that protects your artery walls. When it’s damaged cholesterol, and white blood cells form plaque in the affected area.
Plaque builds up over the years, and in due time it may slow or prevent blood from flowing into your penis. Also, hypertension medication like beta-blockers and diuretics are reported to cause erectile dysfunction.
Many people with diabetes struggle with keeping their blood sugar levels balanced. It reduces the amount of nitric oxide produced by your body. Nitric oxide is a chemical that’s released into your bloodstream when you are sexually aroused.
This chemical helps muscles and blood vessels in your penis to relax. It allows blood to flow through them. Nitric oxide generation slows down as blood sugar levels increase. That means men who don’t monitor their diabetes are at higher risk than those who do.
Statistics say that around 35% to 50% of diabetic men suffer from erectile dysfunction.
Research has shown that being anxious about your sexual performance makes you feel incapable of pleasing your partner when self-imposed expectations aren’t met.
These negative feelings can be exacerbated by low self-esteem issues and a poor body image. These feelings trigger stress hormones that’ll make it hard for you to find sexual activity enjoyable. It thus leads to erectile dysfunction.
General stress can also lead to anxiety as stress hormones that are already present in your system will make it hard for you to have an erection.
Many men aren’t able to get or maintain an erection due to minor and temporary reasons. This, however, could drive men into performance anxiety as they’ll put too much pressure on themselves trying to get an erection.
When this fails, they’ll keep stressing themselves, and that’ll lead them into getting erectile dysfunction. Another problem that leads to erectile dysfunction is when your brain reacts to sexual stimuli, but due to nerve damage, key organs can’t respond to the brain.
This nerve damage is prevalent in people with multiple sclerosis, diabetes, and spinal cord injuries. Men who have undergone pelvic surgery and heavy drinkers are also at risk.