Erectile dysfunction - a quick overview

ED, erectile dysfunction – these are all terms that we used to refer to those embarrassing moment when you can't get it up. 

Erectile dysfunction is a diagnosable condition in men. It affects more men than you think – even younger adults have recently seen an increase in trends!

It's important to realize that having some difficulties once in a while does not mean you have ED. In fact, it's perfectly normal to not be in the mood sometimes. 

When these “events” become more frequent… that's when it's time to start worrying. 

Read on to help you discover what ED means, why it happens, and what you can do about it.


erectile dysfunction symptoms

What Is Erectile Dysfunction?

Erectile dysfunction – it's a common term that is used, yet a lot of men do not understand the condition at an appropriate level. 

Men think… “If I can't get a hard-on, I've got ED”. 

Sure, sometimes this is true – but for a lot of men, the worries are unnecessary. 

We live in a time where stress has become part of our daily lives. Both your personal and professional life adds to the piles of stress you have to face. All of these stressors pile up. Once you get home after a stressful day, all you can think of is getting into a warm shower and then hitting the hay. Sex might not even be on your mind. 

Initiating an intimate activity when you are in this mood can definitely have its impact. When you remain limb… or perhaps your erection goes away too quickly – this does not mean you have erectile dysfunction. 

A lot of men immediately jump to the worst conclusions when this happens. This cause a chain effect. Now, you suddenly feel depressed. Those depressing feelings are going to dampen your mood even further. You damage your libido. Plus, next time you get busy in the bedroom, you're constantly feeling anxious. What if it doesn't come up? 

Erectile dysfunction – in terms of the medical condition – is only diagnosed when the problems you have in the bedroom becomes a real problem. 

Medical experts explain that erectile dysfunction is complicated. It may not affect you the same way as another man. In one case, the symptoms can be serious. There could even be a complete loss of erectile function. Another man may only experience a slight decrease in rigidity. 

If you are having trouble getting it up most of the time, then it might be a reason to go to a doctor. If this only happens after a stressful day, there might not be as much of a reason to feel concerned. 

Now that we've explored ED a little more, I'm going to move on to symptoms, causes, and other factors you should understand. By fully understanding ED, you give yourself the ability to know how to react, when you should worry, and what you should do. 

Symptoms of ED

While ED affects men differently, there are a few common symptoms that you might want to look out for. 

As I've noted before, don't get too worried if you stay limb when you try to get busy after a busy day at the office. Stress affects your libido – this has been proven. 

Here's the common symptoms that doctors look for before diagnosing ED:

  • You have problems getting an erection
  • You have problems keeping the erection 

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Note that these two symptoms are very “broad” or “generic”. 

In most cases, a doctor will consider your medical history. They will ask you about the specific symptoms – including severity and frequency. All of this needs to be considered if a doctor is to make the right diagnosis. 

When will a doctor consider a medical diagnosis for erectile dysfunction?

  • If you constantly find that you can't have an erection – generally more than 50% of the time.
  • If your troubles in the bedroom affects your performance and relationship.
  • If you experience complications as a result of your erectile difficulties. 

Causes And Risk Factors

Men who are affected by this dreaded issue often can't understand why. 

“Why did this have to happen to me?” 

“Did I do something wrong?”

While diagnosing erectile dysfunction or at least recognizing the possibility of the issue is one thing, it can be a completely different story finding the cause. 

Causes differ between men with ED. There are a lot of factors that can influence the reason for ED to develop. One of the major risk factors is age. This is why most men think of ED as an “old man's disease”. 

The truth is, while age is a risk, young men also suffer from erectile problems. 

In one scientific Journal entry, researchers explain that the worldwide male population is facing a “syndrome” of sorts. There is a rise in the number of young men complaining about ED symptoms to their doctor. 

With this in mind, do take note that age still plays a role. By 70, about 70% of men have ED symptoms. The rate of ED is lower in young men – but it is still a possible problem that seems to be increasing these days. According to BUMC, up to 10% of young adults (under 40 years) are affected by ED. 

When looking at ED causes and risk factors, we really need to divide this into two separate sections. Both the mind and the body plays a role in an erection. When either of these are not aligned, the result may be going limb too quickly – or not getting hard at all.

Mental Health & ED

When you are still young and have erectile difficulties – there's a big chance that it's due to a mental issue. The thing is, according to several studies and medical experts, the physical causes of ED are mostly found among older men. 

With this in mind, we'll start by considering how your mental health could be damaging your sex life. 

When you consider the connection between mental health and ED, there are three “main” things to take into account:

  • Stress
  • Depression
  • Anxiety

The mental-ED connection is actually quite complex. It's not as simple as saying “so, if you have stress, you could end up with ED”…
Truth is, we're all living with stress. Some have more stress than others. It is not those acute moments of stress that causes poor erections. Instead, it is the stress that constantly accumulates. It piles up – and eventually causes you should be referring to as “chronic stress”. 

Chronic stress is when stress starts to take its toll on your body. You start to feel tired and unmotivated. All of a sudden, your performance at work is lacking. The same goes for your performance in the bedroom. No more hours of making love. Instead, you don't feel in the mood at all. 

Stress can turn into a more serious problem. You constantly find yourself stressing. In the long-run, you start to feel depressed. The APA reports that about 9% of men have depression on a daily basis. Yet, less than 33% of these men are treated for the mental disorder. Depression can become worse – especially when those stressors in your life remain present. 

 The next thing you know, you can't get it up when you're about to have sex. This is because the mind plays a big role in stimulating an erection. It's called libido….

If your libido is low, there's a much lower chance of getting a hard on during sex. If you can manage to manifest an erection – it may only last for a VERY short while. 

Anxiety is another factor to consider. Men with anxiety tend to be at a greater risk of sexual dysfunctions. This includes erectile dysfunction and a low libido. 

A lot of men have a combination of mental health problems. Perhaps you constantly stress. The stress develops into depression. Your newly developed ED causes worse depression. On top of all this, you start to experience “performance anxiety” in the process. 

Physical Health & ED

Some men can't get an erection due to mental health issues. Others, however, may rather be facing physical problems. There are several physical causes behind erectile dysfunction. Men with existing risk factors related to their physical health have a higher chance of developing ED. 

When it comes to physical causes – blood flow should come to mind first. Once you are sexually stimulated (it starts in the mind…), your brain makes hormones that communicate with your genitals. These hormones tell muscles at the base of your penis to relax. Once relaxed, blood goes into your penis. There are three “chambers” in the penis – two of these contain small blood vessels. As they fill with blood, the penis swells up – and that's what we call an erection. 

Why get so technical all of a sudden? Well, it's important to know how an erection works. When you have an understanding, it gives you an idea of why you might be having problems. 

When there is something causes less blood to flow to your pelvis or into your penis, then you could be facing some trouble in the bedroom. 

Some experts believe that ED is often an early warning sign of heart disease in men. This means tackling your ED as soon as it appears might end up saving your life! 

Clogged arteries are common in men with ED – especially among older folks. This is also called atherosclerosis. Cholesterol basically builds up in your arteries. This causes the arteries and blood vessels to become narrower. You end up with poor blood flow. Not only does this affect your erections, but also other parts of your body. 

Heart disease and blood circulation problems are not the only physical factors that causes ED. 

Studies show that diabetes is a major contributing factor to the high prevalence of ED in the older male population. Diabetes tend to damage nerves in the body. This can have negative effects on messages sent between nerves. It could also affect your blood flow. Your ability to have a normal erection could be affected as well. 

Erectile Dysfunction Treatments

While erectile dysfunction is common, you should know that there are highly effective treatments available.

If you have problems getting an erection, start by considering personal factors.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • How old am I?
  • Do I deal with a lot of stress on a daily basis?
  • Do I feel depressed?
  • Do I have signs of heart disease?
  • When is the last time I checked my blood pressure?
  • Is my libido gone too? Or am I still easily aroused?
  • Have I checked my blood sugar levels recently? (Crucial if you are a diabetic!)

These questions only cover a few of the potential risks and causes. Look at the previous section and see if there may be a specific reason why you're having these problems.

One of the most important things to note here is to NOT delay the process. Seeking out treatment is important. The sooner you treat this condition, the more successful treatment may be.

Plus, there is a chance that ED symptoms may be a sign of something more serious. With this in mind, you could end up detecting an underlying condition – one that might have turned into a life threatening event, should you not have noticed it early on.

 There are a few direct treatments that your doctor could recommend. Viagra is, by far, the most popular treatment.

This drug was the first to be approved by the FDA for the treatment of erectile dysfunction, making it the oldest ED medication in existence.

In recent years, a few more drugs were approved by the FDA for this purpose.

A great thing about Viagra is that multiple studies have shown it is effective at treating ED. In one study, for example, medical experts agree that Viagra is currently the preferred treatment prescribed to men with ED symptoms.

The active ingredient in Viagra is known as “Sildenafil”. This drug takes about an hour or two to start working. Its effects then last for up to six hours. You will usually take a drug with Sildenafil, like Viagra, when you know you'll be having some intimate time in the next few hours. 

Tadalafil is another good option that have gained a lot of popularity. This drug has been made to provide a longer lasting effect. Most men find that it helps them achieve an erection for up to 36 hours! In one study, researchers found that it takes as little as 30 minutes for the effects of Tadalafil to kick in. That means you might get hard more easily just half an hour after you take the pill.

There are a few other drugs also prescribed for ED, but these two tend to be the most preferred. 

Side-effects are sometimes experienced if you take Sildenafil or Tadalafil, as well as any other PDE5 inhibitor (the drug class these medications are assigned to). Headaches are the most common type of side-effect reported. Some men complain about back pain, nasal congestion, myalgia, and other side-effects – but these happen to less than 10% of men who take the medication. 

Buying Prescription ED Drugs Online

Let's be honest – as a man, you don't want to walk into a doctor's office and talk about something as sensitive as not being able to get a hard on. Even once you've realized the problem is very real, you still don't want to face this embarrassment. Don't worry – you're not alone. Most men feel like this. In fact, a lot of men with ED don't get the treatment they need. 

It's important to realize that, as explained, treatments can really help. I've felt the effects of these treatments – with just a single blue pill, I was able to get hard again. 

With the internet evolving so much, discreetly buying items like your ED drugs online is no longer an issue. It is, however, important to note that there are still a lot of sites selling drugs like Viagra illegally. In the US, you should ensure you have a prescription for the appropriate dose – and that's why I recommend taking a look at HUGE and BlueChew. 

Both of these products give you a choice between Sildenafil (the ingredient that makes Viagra work) and Tadalafil (the main ingredient in Cialis). The main difference between the two is the method of administration. With HUGE, you take the pill like you would regular Viagra. BlueChew, however, offers an alternative – instead of swallowing a pill with water, you chew this one. 

These are legal ED medications that are backed by a body of medical experts. Both HUGE and BlueChew have a network of doctors that review cases on an individual basis. If the doctor finds that you meet the criteria for ED medication, they will prescribe you the right dose and your pills will be shipped to you. 

The best thing is the fact that you get total privacy and discreetness. Ordering from either HUGE or BlueChew means no obvious terms will be visible on the package sent to you. No-one, expect for you, will know what you ordered. You won't have to visit a doctor in person, further adding to the privacy you gain when you decide to buy these approved ED treatments online. 

Interested in giving them a try? Currently, HUGE comes with a very convenient $1 trial offer. This allows you to test out the services and see if either Sildenafil or Tadalafil are appropriate for you. Pricing for the ED medication from HUGE starts at $29.99 per month. With BlueChew, you get a chewable pill that looks like a piece of bubble gum. Pricing for BlueChew starts at just $20 per month, depending on the subscription you choose. 

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Get your prescription online without a video or phone call in most states. Simply fill out a questionnaire and a doctor will review your case. Once a prescription is reached out, your selected HUGE subscription is shipped to your door. $1 trial available to help you get started, with no extra consultation costs.

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A great alternative if you don't like taking pills. No need for water or swallowing a big pill. BlueChew is a chewable version of Sildenafil and Tadalafil. Pricing starts at just $20 per month with no additional charges for a consultation. A prescription is reached out after you've filled out a quick online form and it is approved by a doctor.