Cambridge (Massachusetts, USA): «Middle East»
Erectile dysfunction is one of the most common health problems among older men, especially those with cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Some estimates indicate that between 50% and 70% of men between the ages of 50 and 70 suffer erectile dysfunction, whose degree varies from mild to moderate.
Scientifically, erectile dysfunction is categorized as difficulty achieving or maintaining an erection. There is often a mixture of physical and psychological problems behind it. Erectile dysfunction increases the difficulty of the sexual process, which may reduce motivation and sexual desire, cause anxiety and depression, and negatively affect a man’s relationship with his partner.
Erectile dysfunction drugs represent the traditional solution for most men, yet they still have negative aspects, such as the presence of potential side effects and the temptation to over-dependence. However, pills should not necessarily be your first and only solution.
“In many cases, lifestyle changes slow the progression of erectile dysfunction and help manage it,” said Dr. Mark Garnick, professor of urological oncology and cancer at Harvard University’s House of Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Accordingly, you may not need to take or rely much on erectile dysfunction drugs.
Look for signs
You should always monitor your level of sexual performance, looking for any changes that may occur to it, no matter how simple they seem. For example: Can you achieve an erection, but not be able to have full sex? Do your erections last a long time, or are they fluctuating? You should consult your primary care doctor if symptoms become more frequent or worsen. In addition to confirming your condition, your doctor can examine you to see if you have other health problems that may be causing erectile dysfunction.
Once it is confirmed that you have erectile dysfunction, you should talk to your doctor about treatment options, including making lifestyle changes. “Such changes can have an immediate and long-term impact on the management of erectile dysfunction, and they should often be considered as the first option before trying drugs,” Dr. Garnick said.
The following are some of the proven strategies:
> Get more physical exercise: An analysis published in the Journal of School of Medicine in June 2018 concluded that, on average, moderate to vigorous physical activity for 40 minutes is successful. Twice a week for six weeks, in improving erectile dysfunction cases. The type of exercise does not matter as long as the appropriate level of intensity is present.
Examples include jogging, swimming, cycling and brisk walking. There are many ways to increase the volume of training you undertake. And if you can’t go to a gym or club to take part in exercise classes, you can do similar exercises at home via the Internet.
> Try kegel exercises: Kegel exercises help strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. Some research suggests that it may help relieve erectile dysfunction by increasing blood flow to the penis. The Kegel exercise is performed by stretching the muscles that a person uses in order to stop the flow of urine or to prevent the release of gases from the back of the body.
Usually, the routine of these exercises consists of several different exercises, each for a certain period of time, by contracting the muscles and then loosening them repeatedly. The number of repetitions can vary from 10 to 100. You can learn more about kegels at
Weight and food
Track your waistline: A 2015 study found that obese men face a 40 percent higher risk of developing erectile dysfunction. So, if you are overweight, you should work to reduce your weight by between 5 percent and 10 percent, since this has been proven effective in improving sexual performance.
Change your diet: Several studies have concluded that the health benefits of a Mediterranean diet extend to improving erectile dysfunction, too. Through the following link, you can read tips to help you start following the Mediterranean diet:
Erectile dysfunction may be a sign of other health problems. So it is a wake-up call, and among those other health problems, for example:
Cardiovascular diseases: Erectile dysfunction often occurs as a result of abnormal blood vessels that do not provide enough blood to the penis to enable it to have an erection. “Erectile dysfunction may be an indication that something else is going on in your blood vessels, such as high blood pressure or atherosclerosis,” Dr. Garnick said.
Diabetes: Diabetes can damage the nerves and blood vessels needed to achieve and maintain an erection. Men who suffer from diabetes usually experience erectile dysfunction at a younger age than other men without it.
Prostate problems: Men with BPH are more likely to experience erectile dysfunction. Although this is uncommon, erectile dysfunction may be linked to prostate cancer.
Psychological problems: Psychological and emotional problems, such as nervous stress, anxiety and depression, can contribute to erectile dysfunction. Your doctor can help diagnose the condition and direct you toward treatment or other forms of help needed.
Harvard Message “Monitoring Men’s Health”, “Tribune Media” services.