Many men have questions about erectile dysfunction (ED), whether they are seeking more information, or would like to know the truth behind some of the ED myths floating around the web. Below are some of the questions that our doctors are often asked:
1. Does Viagra affect fertility?
There have been some reports by the media and in the medical press that Viagra can cause sperm damage, but these are exceedingly rare. Viagra will improve your ability to get and maintain an erection, and therefore improve your sex life and the chances of you getting your partner pregnant, but will not increase your sex drive itself. Similarly, Viagra will only be effective if you go through the process of sexual arousal, and will not generate an erection automatically.
2. Can I take Viagra if I have diabetes or cardiovascular diseases?
Yes. Suffering from diabetes and cardiovascular disease often means that erectile dysfunction is more common. Anti-impotence drugs such as Viagra can usually be used in these situations, but will be most effective if your condition is well controlled. You’ll also need to check that you’re not on any medicines that can interact with Viagra and other similar drugs.
3. Is erectile dysfunction a natural part of the ageing process?
Erectile dysfunction tends to be more common in men over the age of 40, as conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol and obesity are common causes for erectile dysfunction, and tend to be more common in men of this age.
4. Can tiredness cause erectile dysfunction?
Your sex drive (libido) and ability to get an erection will be affected by being too tired, and even a lack of fitness. Similarly, alcohol and drug consumption can increase your chances of experiencing erectile dysfunction.
5. Does excessive masturbation cause erectile dysfunction?
It depends what your definition of ‘excessive’ is. If you’re masturbating several times in an hour, then you may well get some problems getting an erection, from sheer exhaustion if nothing else. If, however, you’re only masturbating once or twice a day, then this is quite normal, and is highly unlikely to be a cause of erectile dysfunction.
6. Do tight jeans and underwear lead to erectile dysfunction?
Not in the short term, however long-term compression of the testicles can lead to impaired fertility.
7. Do I have erectile dysfunction because I’m not attracted to my partner anymore?
Sadly, erectile dysfunction can be a result of not being attracted to your partner anymore. However, it is important to realise that there are other causes of erectile dysfunction besides this, which can be far more serious. These can include high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol and obesity.
8. Can using a bad saddle on a bicycle cause erectile dysfunction?
Yes, excessive cycling can cause erectile dysfunction. This is due to pressure on the nerves at the base of the penis. Use a good saddle, and if the discomfort is prolonged after the cycling, it’s worth speaking to your GP about this.