Does Erectile Dysfunction Affect Your Marriage?

You have Erectile dysfunction is when you are unable to sustain an erection during intercourse.  The condition is also known as impotence and is very disheartening for a man. Being unable to maintain an erection can have a devastating effect on your relationships because sex is no longer satisfying.

If you are not open about having erectile dysfunction with your partner they may think that you are no longer interested in them. This can have a negative effect on your marriage and could lead to arguments and affairs.

There are many reasons why you may have erectile dysfunction these include; heart conditions, neurological conditions, diabetes and psychological problems. You can still get erectile dysfunction even if you have enjoyed an active sex life.

Health conditions such as; heart disease, diabetes, obesity, Multiple sclerosis and treatment for prostate cancer can cause impotence. Erectile dysfunction may be the symptom that prompts you to visit your doctor and an underlying medical condition could be the cause.

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Medication That Causes ED

Some Medication can have adverse side effects that include impotence.  The following medication can cause impotence;  Heart medication, antidepressants, anxiety medication, sleeping pills and amphetamines, painkillers, cancer drugs and hormone treatments.  If you are taking any medication it would be wise to consult your doctor to see if erectile dysfunction is a side effect.

Unfortunately, your condition may be too serious to allow you to have a lower dose.  If this is the case your doctor may suggest treatment that won't affect your health condition or clash with your medication.

 

Psychological Causes Of Erectile Dysfunction

Most cases of erectile dysfunction are secondary meaning that you are only just experiencing it after years of successful intercourse.  Primary erectile dysfunction is when you have never been able to sustain an erection. If you have no obvious physical problem with the penis the cause is likely to be psychological.

If you are suffering from guilt, depression, stress, anxiety or dislike intimacy your ability to have an erection may be affected.  Maybe you Relationship is going through a bad patch and you are not as close to your partner as you usually are.  Most cases of erectile dysfunction are caused by physical issues and are rarely psychological.

Difficulties in your marriage or everyday stresses can cause impotence.  Intimacy is a very important part of any relationship and not being able to have sex can have a negative impact on how couples feel about each other.  Couples councilling can help if both of you want to preserve the relationship.  If the relationship is causing the problems then maybe you might want to consider if you would like to continue being together.

Treatments

Once the cause of erectile dysfunction is ascertained the condition can be treated.  The reason for your impotence is usually diagnosed a; physical examination, blood tests, urine tests, ultrasound and depression screening.  When you have a reason for your erectile dysfunction your doctor will suggest the most suitable treatment.

Viagra

Your doctor may suggest that you take Viagra or a drug that has a similar effect.  Viagra has become an umbrella term for ED medication but there are many more treatments available that are much cheaper to buy.  Sildenafil (a generic form of Viagra), Cialis, Spedra, and Levitra are also used to treat erectile dysfunction.  These medications work by relaxing the blood vessels to the penis enabling it to become erect.  You need to be sexually stimulated in order for the drugs to work otherwise they will not improve your erection.  This is a good excuse for couples to engage in foreplay and rekindle their faltering relationship.

You will only be prescribed this type of medication if it is likely to work and if you don't have any health issues that could get worse as a result of taking it.  

Surgery, Pumps And Implants

If the reason for your erectile dysfunction is physical and medication is not the best option there are other ways to stimulate an erection.  

A penis pump is a long tube that you put your penis in and pump to cause a vacuum.  This causes the penis to expand to fill the tube and become erect. A ring is placed at the bottom of the shaft to maintain the erection.  The ring is removed after sex so that the penis becomes flaccid again.  Ejaculating is difficult with the band on.

Usually considered a last resort penile rods are inflatable tubes that are positioned at either side of the penis.  They are inserted underneath the skin and can be inflated whenever an erection is required.

Exercise

An exercise routine recommended by your doctor can improve erectile dysfunction.  Rigorous exercise is much more effective but gentle exercise is sufficient.  If you have a heart condition exercise may not help you.

Counselling

Erectile dysfunction caused by psychological issues can benefit from counselling and talk therapy.  You can go individually or as a couple.  The subconscious tension in a relationship can cause the condition.  Talking about the relation will relieve the tension and help you both find the best way to deal with it.

(Source: Mayo Clinic)

Erectile dysfunction does affect your marriage. How you both choose to deal with it depends on how much you value your relationship. If there is a mutual understanding of the cause of ED you can both work together to overcome it.

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By Parv Sagoo (December 2018)