What is Erectile Dysfunction?
Once popularly known as impotence, erectile dysfunction (ED) is the inability to achieve or sustain an erection firm or long enough to have sexual intercourse and can be either an occasional or frequent experience. Occasional ED occurs mostly during times of stress and is not as common as consistent ED. Frequent ED is usually the result of a health condition that requires medical attention.
Is Erectile Dysfunction Permanent? Is it Treatable?
Most erectile dysfunction cases can be easily and successfully treated. However, this will be dependent on different factors, which include the underlying cause of the condition and the appropriateness of treatment chosen. There are two types of ED:
Primary Erectile Dysfunction: This refers to men who have never been able to have or sustain an erection. These are rare cases.
Secondary Erectile Dysfunction: This refers to those who were once experiencing regular erectile function. It is the most common of the ED cases today.
Secondary ED is, in most cases, both temporary and treatable. While primary ED is not untreatable, it usually requires more comprehensive treatment methods.
Symptoms of Erectile Dysfunction
If you are experiencing any of the following, it is time to see your doctor. ED symptoms include:
- Being unable to or regularly or occasionally struggling to have an erection
- Feeling anxious, embarrassed, or guilty about having sex
- Being able to have an erection, but not sustain it for long enough to have an orgasm
Causes of Erectile Dysfunction
In the past, most erectile dysfunction cases were thought to be associated with psychological issues. However, from some recent research, medical experts now think that 70% of ED cases can be traced to a physical condition.
- Peyronie’s disease
- Type 2 diabetes
- High blood pressure
- Multiple sclerosis
- Injury to the spinal cord, pelvis, pelvis, or penis
- Injuries from prostate cancer treatments or surgery
- Surgery for bladder cancer
Diabetes, for instance, has been found to be the most common cause of ED among the above diseases. Diabetic men are two to three times more likely to experience erectile dysfunction than men who are not diabetic.
Some psychological and emotional issues can cause ED. They include:
- Fear of sexual failure
- Low self-esteem
- Feeling guilty about sexual performance
Sometimes, all that is required to overcome ED is a change in lifestyle. Some of these lifestyle habits and their related health factors can negatively impact your sexual performance:
- Drinking too much alcohol
- Using certain recreational drugs
- Not being active or engaging in physical exercise
- Being overweight
Drugs like antidepressants, blood pressure medications, ulcer medications, tranquilizers, sedatives, and appetite suppressants can also cause ED.
Treatment Options for Erectile Dysfunction
The best approach to treating erectile dysfunction is first to know the underlying cause. This can be achieved by working with medical professionals, especially the specialist in the urinary incontinence and erectile dysfunction branch of urology. Some possible treatments for ED are:
Exercise and physical activity have proven to help fight and prevent poor sexual performance. It improves the bodily and emotional state, helps in weight management, as well as maintaining bone and muscle strength.
The specialized physical therapy for erectile dysfunction is called the kegel exercise. It involves different types of exercises aimed at improving the strength of the pelvic floor muscles. There is a superficial muscle known as bulbocavernosus muscle that has three main functions, which are engorging of blood during erection, pumping of blood during ejaculation, and emptying of the urethra after urination. Physical therapists often take erectile dysfunction patients through different kegel exercises such as knee fallouts, standing pelvic floor activation, sitting pelvic floor activation, and pelvic curl.
If it is suspected that your case might be related to psychological issues, it is recommended that you see a counselor. Your counselor will guide you on how to best deal with the stress, anxiety, and other emotional triggers that might be responsible for your ED.
Bear in mind that attending counseling sessions with your partner will help yield better results. You will stand a good chance when your doctor treats any physical causes while your counselor handles the psychological causes just as your partner provides the necessary moral support.
There are also some medications for ED. They are used to improve blood flow to the penis to produce an erection. Most common among them are Viagra, Levitra, and Cialis. The downside of these prescription drugs is that they interfere with other medications, which may impact one’s health. This makes them not appropriate for everyone.
Vacuum Erection Devices
A vacuum constriction device (VCD) is a cylinder plastic external pump. The device comes with a pump and a constriction ring. The cylinder and pump are placed over the penis to help draw blood needed to create an erection, while the constriction ring is placed at the other end of the cylinder to maintain an erection.
Other methods to treat ED include:
- Injectable medicines and suppositories
- Penile Implant Surgery
- Intracavernosal Injection Therapy
- Low-Intensity Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy
What is Shockwave Therapy?
Shockwave therapy is a multifaceted method used in physiotherapy, orthopedics, urology, and sports medicine. It is a non-surgical process that has proven to be effective for mobility restoration. Shockwave therapy uses low-energy impulses to stimulate regeneration and reparative processes in the muscle, tendons, and bones. The device generates acoustic waves with energy flux density and comparable pressure.
Treating Erectile Dysfunction With Shockwave Therapy
Of all treatments for erectile dysfunction, shockwave therapy is among the most effective. One of the factors that make it more preferred is its long-lasting effects, which help restore penile function. Unlike many others that are mainly palliative, one-time interventions, with shockwave therapy, the possibility of seeing permanent improvement in erectile function is very high. This means you will not have to rely on medications for every sexual encounter. Undergoing the therapy comes with several benefits which include:
- Improvement in overall erectile function in areas such as erectile strength, desire, orgasm, and general satisfaction with intercourse
- Increase and consistency in blood flow to the penile area
- Improved nocturnal penile tumescence, which refers to having a spontaneous erection when sleeping or when you are just waking up
- Achieving a spontaneous erection sufficient for penetration without the aid of any medication or external device. The effect can last for over six months after the therapy.
Shockwave Therapy for Erectile Dysfunction: How Does it Work?
Every instance of sexual intercourse involves three key mechanisms in this sequential order – libido, erection, and orgasm. Libido creates the desire for sex, this will be followed by erection which is the ability of the penis to get enlarged and stand firm. These two will facilitate orgasm, which leads to climax and ejaculation.
With ED, successfully performing the above crucial functions is very difficult, and sometimes impossible. This turns sexual encounters that ordinarily should be an exciting and enjoyable experience into embarrassing, unpleasant moments.
Shockwave therapy is aimed at tackling the root cause of the condition. It removes the plaques blocking the penile arteries and causes a re-growth of new, healthy blood vessels. As earlier stated, blood flow is crucial to erection, as it is what gives the penis the firmness needed for penetration.
How Shockwave Therapy MD Can Help
With the right coordinated effort of medical experts, erectile dysfunction can easily and permanently go away.
Here at Shockwave Therapy MD, we have a team of medical professionals dedicated to helping men attaining and improving their sexual performance. We use the latest technologies and best practices in the industry to help you. With us, your sexual dysfunctions can become a thing of the past.
We will carefully evaluate your case and come up with the best cause of treatment for you. We also follow up on your improvements to ensure you maintain your sexual fitness. Whether you are experiencing erectile dysfunction or would just like to improve your performance in bed, we can help. To book a free consultation with us today, simply fill this contact form.