Erectile Dysfunction / Impotence
Approximately 18 million men in the U.S. suffer from erectile dysfunction (ED or impotence). ED occurs when a man can no longer get or keep an erection firm enough for sexual intercourse. ED becomes more common as you get older, but it is not normal. Problems with erections may be caused by medications, chronic illness, poor blood flow to the penis, drinking too much alcohol, or being too tired.
It’s normal for ED to happen from time to time but if this is an ongoing problem, you should see a doctor. As well as causing stress, relationship problems and decreased self-confidence, erectile dysfunction may be a risk factor for heart disease, often appearing as much as five years before a diagnosis of heart problems.
ED may be a sign of other health problems
Even though it may seem awkward to talk with your doctor about sex or erectile dysfunction, it’s important for you to get an evaluation. Problems getting or keeping an erection can be a sign of a health condition that needs treatment, such as heart disease or poorly controlled diabetes. Treating an underlying problem may be enough to reverse your erectile dysfunction. Also, medications or other treatments have been shown to work.
Your doctor can offer several new treatments for ED. For many men, the answer is as simple as taking a pill.
These 7 simple steps called Life’s Simple 7™ will help:
- Stop smoking
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Get active
- Eat better
- Control your cholesterol
- Manage your blood pressure
- Control your blood sugar. To help you manage diabetes or pre-diabetes, Hurley Medical Center offers several Diabetes Education Programs.