Impotence (erectile dysfunction) in men is expressed in the inability of the penis to erect to a sufficient extent and stay erected for the time required to complete a sexual intercourse. However, it would be wrong to attribute every unsuccessful sexual intercourse due to a “weak” or no erection to impotence and raise the alarm. In certain cases, unwillingness to coitus can be justified, reasoned, and temporary. For example, due to strong physical, psychological fatigue, or because of lack of sexual interest in a specific women (these may be friends or women of a certain appearance).
Erection is a complex physiological process, with a wide range of neurological, psychological, and organic factors involved. The chain of necessary reactions is triggered by a special impulse, generated by the subcortical structures of the brain. If the man is completely healthy and does not have any abnormalities, then the state of erection will set in within a few seconds after the appearance of the stimulus (thoughts about sex, memories, fantasies, viewing erotic photos and video materials, contact with a woman). In other words, for the erection to happen, you need a triggering pulse and a response of the male body to this pulse. For this reason, impotence is divided into several types, depending on which level the problem has occurred.
• Psychogenic impotence. It is caused by a failure in the formation of the triggering pulse. Here, sexual impotence in a man can manifest as a weak sexual desire and as a consequence –insufficient erection of the penis, or a complete absence of an erection.
• Organic impotence. It is associated with the impossibility of the organism for any reasons to give a normal reaction to the exciting pulse. In this case, the man feels a strong attraction, however, he is not able to complete sexual intercourse.
• Mixed impotence. It is a combination of impotence of both types and can develop as a consequence of a basic psychogenic or organic factor.
Symptoms of Impotence
By nature, impotence is divided into primary and secondary. If a man has never got an erection sufficient to perform coitus, then he has a primary impotence. This is a fairly rare phenomenon associated with serious disorders in the body. If a man got an erection and has experience of healthful sexual activity, with erectile dysfunction arising thereafter, this is a secondary impotence.
It is worth noting that the problems with sexual intercourse can be associated with temporary impotence, which in most cases can be eliminated without the assistance of specialists.
The following situations should not raise a serious concern.
• Premature ejaculation, which occurs in a man due to the lack of regular sexual relations. This problem can be solved easily by normalizing the frequency of sexual intercourses. If early ejaculation is observed irrespective of the frequency, then such a problem should be addressed to a specialist.
• Weak erection due to too active sex life. Sexual opportunities and resources for each man are individual. For one, the norm is 2 to 3 coituses a week, for another one – 5-6 or more. However, as this frequency increases, the reaction to stimuli, manifested as sexual excitement, naturally decreases up to complete indifference to intimate relationships. This condition is easily eliminated by “rest”. Its duration depends on the degree of the transferred loads and, again, the sexual capabilities of the man.
• Reduced sexual activity with age. This is a gradual process and manifests itself, first of all, in the frequency of full-fledged sexual intercourses committed. If the ability to achieve an erection disappears suddenly, it is time to seek help from a specialist.
The symptoms of impotence, which must be paid attention to, include the following conditions:
• Impossibility to achieve a full erection in the presence of strong desire and irritants. In this case, only a partial erection that is insufficient to perform coitus can be observed.
• No erection in the presence of desire and exciting factors.
• The state of excitation is achieved, but it subsides in the process of coitus until it comes to its logical conclusion.
• Premature emission of seminal fluid if an adult man has a full sexual life.
• Persistent complete absence or a strong decrease in sexual desire, i.e. desire to have intimate relationships with women.
If at least one of these conditions is present, it indicates impotence, which needs treatment. The greater the incidence of such symptoms, the more difficult it is to deal with the problem, since erectile dysfunction in such cases is determined by a number of factors.
The need for medical care is easy to comprehend: if an unpleasant condition persists for an extended period of time, you need professional help. The doctor will establish the cause of the disorder and prescribe effective therapy.
Diagnosis of impotence in men is made based of the complaints. If necessary, the doctor will appoint further tests to identify a specific disease that has led to erectile dysfunction.
Causes of Male Impotence.
Erectile dysfunction can both be an independent disease, and speak for other problems. As mentioned earlier, the erection is characterized by a very complex mechanism, therefore, various health problems are often affect the potency.
Most often, it is psychological (psychogenic) impotence that young sexually mature healthy men suffer. The reason for this problem is a constant psychological overstrain at work, excessive nervousness, anxiety, etc. Stress conditions can accumulate. If at first, psychological stress cannot have any effect on men’s abilities, overtime the consequences can manifest as a sudden lack or a weak erection at the time of intimacy.
Often impotence can be caused by prostatitis, urethritis, cystitis, vesiculitis, orchitis and other inflammatory diseases of the urogenital system in men. For example, chronic prostatitis leads to a decrease in the conductivity of the receptors responsible for erection. Inflammatory processes in the testicles can lead to a decrease in the production of testosterone. It is very important to detect and treat such diseases in a timely manner, as the proximity of the organs facilitates the exchange of infection between the organs.
One of the causes of sexual function impairment is hormone imbalance. The main hormone responsible for the male reproductive function is testosterone. If it is produced insufficiently, this immediately affects the potency - both the very sexual desire, and sexual drive.
The problem may be determined by congenital or acquired vascular pathologies (Leriche’s syndrome, atherosclerosis, etc.) causing impaired blood flow to the cavernous bodies of the penis.
Diabetes mellitus, the use of narcotic drugs, alcoholism, as well as serious metabolic disorders represent some common causes of impotence. The problem is caused by damage to the nerve endings, which makes it difficult for the impulses that control the mechanism of erection to pass through them. Impotence often develops after trauma or in the presence of pathologies of the spinal cord, the brain (Parkinson's disease, epilepsy, inflammatory processes, etc.). Here, the reason is, again, in the problem of transferring an “exciting" nerve impulse. With epilepsy, impotence is of mixed nature. Organic factors are augmented by psychological ones, which are associated with the lack of self-confidence and a fear that sex (intensive physical activity) will induce another seizure.
In some instances, erectile dysfunction is a result of taking medications. In this case, a weak erection is caused by side effects of the medications. The virility suppressing agents include neuroleptics, antidepressants, drugs for hypertension, as well as antisecretory drugs.
Masturbation. In Rare Circumstances Only
Masturbation can cause issues with potency. This is due to the fact that artificial irritation of the genital organs imitates the sexual intercourse only partially and causes incomplete separation of seminal fluid (sperm). Frequent masturbation and the lack of a normal sexual life leads to the formation of congestive phenomena in the genital organs. In individual rare cases, when a man has no sexual partner for a long time, sex can be simulated in order to prevent congestion of sperm.
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