More than half of men between the ages of 40 and 70 suffer from some form of erectile dysfunction. And while this may be a sensitive topic, you aren’t alone. Erectile dysfunction is largely treatable, so it’s worth paying your medical provider a visit.
Below, we asked our experts at Bethel Family Medicine to explain the most common causes of erectile dysfunction.
Arousal is a complex process that involves both the physical and the mental. As a result, both physical problems and psychological problems can cause erectile dysfunction.
You are at a higher cause of developing erectile dysfunction if you suffer from the following:
Some treatments used for managing these conditions can also lead to erectile dysfunction. For example, chemotherapy in cancer treatment can raise your risk for erectile dysfunction, and so can treatments for heart disease and hypertension.
Ask your provider how these treatments may impact your overall health, and find out if there are alternative drugs that don’t list erectile dysfunction as a potential side effect.
There are several mechanisms through which emotional stress and conditions such as depression or anxiety can cause sexual dysfunction.
Chronic stress and depression can lower the amount of circulating testosterone in the blood. They can also raise cortisol, which constricts blood vessels and causes difficulties in maintaining arousal.
Additionally, some antidepressants and psychiatric drugs list erectile dysfunction as a side effect.
Many lifestyle factors contribute to sexual dysfunction. These include chronic alcohol consumption and smoking.
A sedentary lifestyle and a diet high in processed foods can also raise your risk for systemic diseases such as diabetes and hypertension. These diseases can, in turn, lead to erectile dysfunction.
Staying active, eating a balanced diet, and avoiding tobacco and alcohol could reduce your risk for erectile dysfunction.
Since erectile dysfunction has many causes, the first step our experts take is to look at your medical history and the medications you’re taking. We’ll also run some tests to see if there are any underlying diseases that could be impacting your sexual performance.
Depending on the cause of your issues, our staff may recommend making lifestyle changes, changing medications, or undergoing testosterone therapy.
Contact us to schedule an appointment and find out what could be causing your symptoms.