Who is affected by erectile dysfunction?
In Poland about 8% of men complain of erection problems. Despite the fact that this indicator increases with age, these problems really affect men of all ages.
How can erectile dysfunction manifest itself?
We can talk about disorders when it is impossible or very difficult to achieve or maintain an erection – and this condition persists for more than 6 months (A. Sikorski, P. Petrasz, Bariery w podtrzymywaniu i kontynuowaniu leczenia zaburzeń erekcji, p. 15). For example we can talk about erectile dysfunction in a situation where erection is only partial or when erection occurs only in the initial phase of the love game but then disappears.
Read more: Erection Problems
What are the causes of erectile dysfunction?
The main causes of erectile dysfunction are:
- Psychological problems – may apply to both young men, who are still inexperienced (e.g. stress related to fear of satisfying their partner; sexual inhibitions that have been taken out of the home), as well as older men (e.g. due to concerns about your own sexual performance). In addition to direct concerns about the sexual sphere, psychiatric factors of a more general nature, e.g. stress at work, mental fatigue, or misunderstandings in a relationship, can also have a negative impact.
- Hormonal disorders – primarily associated with andropause in case of older men; may also be the result of taking steroids.
- Chronic diseases – primarily diabetes. Among men with diabetes, 15% of people aged 30, 60% of people aged 60 and 90% of people over 70 suffer from erectile dysfunction (M. Rabijewski, Zaburzenia erekcji – etiologia i leczenie, p. 46).
- The use of specific drugs – e.g. antihypertensive, antidepressant, sedative drugs.
- Poor diet and lack of exercise – negatively affect the condition of blood vessels, and thus also the ability to properly achieve an erection. The concept of a bad diet is mainly about eating high-fat foods.
- Addictions – smoking, alcohol abuse, drug use.
Treatment of erectile dysfunction
The particular method of treating erectile dysfunction should always be tailored to the individual patient. For this purpose, it is necessary to conduct the appropriate interview and research. The most commonly used methods in the treatment of erectile dysfunction are: psychotherapy, which aims to reduce tension and stress associated with intercourse; training in order to better understand your body and its reactions; imagination methods and relaxation; pharmacological treatment. Physical activity and a proper diet are also recommended, as well as getting rid of excess weight.
Read more: Treatment of Erectile Dysfunction
In the case of psychotherapy, especially cognitive-behavioral therapy is used, aimed at lifting the psychological blockage that causes erection problems.
Read more: Erectile Dysfunction and Psychotherapy
Unfortunately, only about 5% of people with erectile dysfunction undergo treatment.
Rabijewski M., Zaburzenia erekcji – etiologia i leczenie, [in:] Przegląd Urologiczny 4/38 (2006), p. 46.
Sikorski A., Petrasz P., Bariery w podtrzymywaniu i kontynuowaniu leczenia zaburzeń erekcji, [in:] Przegląd Urologiczny 2/24 (2004), p. 15.