Erectile dysfunction (ED), also known as impotence, is the inability to achieve or sustain an erection for satisfactory sexual activity. Erectile dysfunction is different from other conditions that interfere with male sexual intercourse, such as lack of sexual desire (decreased libido) and problems with ejaculation and orgasm (ejaculatory dysfunction).
Erectile dysfunction symptoms may include persistent
- Trouble getting an erection
- Trouble keeping an erection
- Reduced sexual desire
Male sexual arousal is a complex process that involves the brain, hormones, emotions, nerves, muscles and blood vessels. Erectile dysfunction can result from a problem with any of these. Likewise, stress and mental health problems can cause or worsen erectile dysfunction. Sometimes a combination of physical and psychological issues causes erectile dysfunction. For instance, a minor physical problem that slows your sexual response may cause anxiety about maintaining an erection. The resulting anxiety can lead to or worsen erectile dysfunction.
Physical causes of erectile dysfunction
In most cases, erectile dysfunction is caused by something physical. Common causes include:
- Heart disease
- Clogged blood vessels (atherosclerosis)
- High cholesterol
- High blood pressure
- Metabolic syndrome, a condition involving increased blood pressure, high insulin levels, body fat around the waist and high cholesterol
- Parkinson's disease
- Low testosterone
- Peyronie's disease, development of scar tissue inside the penis
- Certain prescription medications
- Tobacco use
- Alcoholism and other forms of substance abuse
- Treatments for prostate cancer or enlarged prostate
- Surgeries or injuries that affect the pelvic area or spinal cord
Psychological causes of erectile dysfunction
The brain plays a key role in triggering the series of physical events that cause an erection, starting with feelings of sexual excitement. A number of things can interfere with sexual feelings and cause or worsen erectile dysfunction. These include:
- Depression, anxiety or other mental health conditions
- Relationship problems due to stress, poor communication or other concerns
A variety of risk factors can contribute to erectile dysfunction. They include:
- Medical conditions, particularly diabetes or heart problems.
- Using tobacco, which restricts blood flow to veins and arteries. Over time tobacco use can cause chronic health problems that lead to erectile dysfunction.
- Being overweight, especially if you're very overweight (obese).
- Certain medical treatments, such as prostate surgery or radiation treatment for cancer.
- Injuries, particularly if they damage the nerves that control erections.
- Medications, including antidepressants, antihistamines and medications to treat high blood pressure, pain or prostate cancer.
- Psychological conditions, such as stress, anxiety or depression.
- Drug and alcohol use, especially if you're a long-term drug user or heavy drinker.
- Prolonged bicycling, which may compress nerves and affect blood flow to the penis, can lead to temporary erectile dysfunction.
At bodhin, homoeopathy offers remarkable results in the cases of Erectile Dysfunction, which may have arisen from both physical and psychological causes. Both, the mental as well as physical component of the disorder can be addressed using homoeopathic treatment.
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