- Created on Wednesday, 17 December 2014 08:02
The Science of ED
Of course, almost everyone over the age of 15 knows the ultimate consequence of erectile dysfunction: the inability to get or maintain an erection. This is, in part, thanks to the abundance of commercials for products like Viagra (sildenafil) and Cialis But do you know exactly why that happens? Why does a penis stop functioning properly; what has happened inside the body to cause such a state? Chances are, you don’t know, but you will after you read this. Although it may not seem like it, arousal is a complicated process. Emotions, the brain, nerves, muscles, hormones, and blood vessels all must be working properly for the “magic” to happen, meaning that there are a lot of things that can go wrong. So dokn't be ashamed if you have to buy Viagra online. Get more info.
The Erecting Process
When a man is stimulated (by anything—touch, smell, sound, or sight), this triggers the brain which sends information down to the base of the spine. Here, nerve fibers that control blood flow connect to the penis. When sexually aroused, these nerve endings release a substance that causes smooth muscle in the erectile body to relax. This means that blood can flow much more freely into the penis, making it full and rigid and thus producing the erection with which so many are familiar.
In the body, erectile dysfunction occurs when any part of this process is hindered or malfunctions on its own. For example, certain conditions cause the smooth muscles to not relax like they are meant to do, nerve damage can prevent the muscle from relaxing, blood vessels may not allow enough blood flow into the penis for an erection to occur, and these are just some of the mechanisms by which dysfunction happens.
Causes of Erectile Dysfunction
Because there are so many variables involved in the erection process, there are a multitude of things that can cause erection dysfunction, ranging anywhere from blood vessel issues to lifestyle to injury or emotional trauma. Below are some of the many reasons erectile dysfunction occurs :
CAUSES OF ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION
|MEDICAL CONDITIONS||PSYCHOLOGICAL FACTORS||LIFESTYLE ISSUES|
|Heart disease||Chronic kidney disease||Low self-esteem||Smoking|
|High cholesterol||High blood pressure||Depression||Using illegal drugs|
|Parkinson's disease||COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)||Worry||Not getting enough exercise|
|Peyronie's disease (this is the development of scar tissue inside the penis)||Enlarged prostate||Relationship problems||Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol|
|Nerve damage (can be caused by diabetes, MS, spinal cord damage, and prostate surgery)||Hyper & Hypothyroidism||Anxiety (about life in general or about one's sexual prowess, size, performance, etc.)||Prolonged bicycling (compresses nerves and negatively affects blood flow to the penis--this is usually temporary)|
|Atherosclerosis (clogged blood vessels)||Hypogonadism||Indifference to one's partner|
|Treatments for prostate cancer (such as radiation, prostate removal, and hormone treatments)||Scleroderma (hardening of the skin)||Fear of failure (especially if erectile dysfunction has happened to you in the moment already)|
|Hormone deficiency (such as low testosterone)||Alzheimer's disease||Stress|
|Metabolic syndrome||Some prescription medications (such as SSRIs)|
|Sickle cell anemia||Venous leak|
When to Seek Help
If you continuously suffer from erectile dysfunction episodes, you should see a doctor. Aside from the help he or she can give you with getting your sex life back on track, they can also save your life. If you look at the chart above, you should notice that a number of those medical conditions are rather serious, some are even fatal. In cases like this, erectile dysfunction isn’t so much the condition, but the side-effect of a much more serious disease. You may think nothing of it, or be too embarrassed to talk to a doctor about erectile dysfunction difficulties. In response to the latter, do not feel ashamed of any ED problems you are having—doctors see a lot worse all of the time and ED is actually quite common, especially as age progresses. Therefore, not only can seeking erectile dysfunction treatment save your relationship, self-esteem, and sex life, but it can also keep your from dying or becoming seriously ill due to a more severe disease.