Erectile Dysfunction: Psychological Causes
Psychological factors are responsible for about 10%-20% of all cases of erectile dysfunction, or ED. It is often a secondary reaction to an underlying physical cause. In some cases, the psychological effects of ED may stem from childhood abuse or sexual trauma. However, the most common psychological causes of ED include:
Stress: Stress can be job-related, money-related, or the result of marital problems, among other factors.
Anxiety : Once a man experiences ED, they may become overly worried that the problem will happen again. This can lead to “performance anxiety,” or a fear of sexual failure, and consistently lead to ED.
Guilt: A man may feel guilty that they are not satisfying their partner.
Depression : A common cause of ED, depression affects a person physically and psychologically. Depression can cause ED even when a man is completely comfortable in sexual situations. Drugs used to treat depression may also cause ED.
Low self-esteem: This can be due to prior episodes of ED (thus a feeling of inadequacy) or can be the result of other issues unrelated to sexual performance.
Indifference: This may come as a result of age and a subsequent loss of interest in sex, be the result of medications or stemming from problems in a couple’s relationship.
All men at one time or another will experience ED. Only if the problem becomes persistent – occurs more than half the time – or becomes a source of distress for you or your partner should you be concerned and consider seeking medical advice and treatment. For men whose erectile dysfunction is caused by psychological problems, therapy may be needed.
What Can Cause Erectile Dysfunction?
A lot goes into achieving an erection. When you’re turned on, nerves fire in your brain. Blood then flows into your penis. If all goes well, you’re ready for sex.
Sometimes, all does not go well. Occasional problems aren’t anything that need treatment. If issues happen more often, you may have erectile dysfunction or ED.
There are many things that can lead to ED. Stress, depression, anxiety, and alcohol use can often trigger it.
In other cases, physical factors are the culprit.
Sometimes, another disease will lead to ED, including the following:
Diabetes: Nerves and blood vessels that aid in getting you ready for sex are damaged by this. Your chances of ED can double if your diabetes is not well-controlled.
Kidney disease : Along with the other issues associated with kidney disease, your hormones, blood flow to your penis, and your nervous system – all vital for getting an erection – are affected. It can also sap your energy and sex drive.
Nerve and brain disorders: You can’t get an erection without help from your nervous system. Things like stroke, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease disrupt vital signals.
Blood vessel diseases: These can slow the flow of blood, making your body’s preparation for sex difficult. Narrowed or blocked arteries, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol are among the most common causes of ED.
Other reasons for ED can include:
Surgery: Nerves and tissue needed for an erection can be affected during procedures to treat prostate and bladder cancer. The problem often clears up, but it may take months. In some cases, the damage is permanent. If it is, there are treatments available to help you be ready for sex.
Injury: If you hurt your pelvis, bladder, spinal cord, or penis – and you require surgery – you may get ED.
Hormone problems: Hormones fuel sex drive. An imbalance can make you uninterested in sex. If you’ve had pituitary gland tumors, kidney or liver disease, depression, or hormone treatment for prostate cancer, talk with your doctor.
Venous leak: To keep an erection, the blood that flows into your penis has to stay a while. If it flows out too quickly, you’ll lose your erection. Injury or disease can cause this.
Tobacco , alcohol, or drug use: All three can damage your blood vessels. If you have artery problems, smoking will make ED much more likely.
Prescription drugs : There are more than 200 prescription drugs that can cause erectile dysfunction. Speak with your doctor if you think one of your medications may be causing this in you.
Prostate enlargement : It’s a normal part of aging for many men. It may also play a role.
Lots of men have dealt with or are dealing with erectile dysfunction. If you think you may have it, talk with your doctor and figure out the plan that’s best for you.
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