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Erectile Dysfunction: How High Is Your Risk?

Did you know that 50% of men aged between 40 and 70 experience erectile dysfunction?

That may seem shocking enough, but it’s even more surprising to hear that 11% of men in their thirties and even 8% of men in their twenties also suffer from erectile dysfunction.

With statistics like that the risk of erectile dysfunction (ED) is not one to ignore. A new report in the Daily Mail highlighted the importance of a healthy lifestyle in the battle to beat impotence. It stated that a 50-year-old smoker with high blood pressure is twice as likely to develop ED than a non-smoking, healthy man of the same age. That fact alone might be enough to make men across the country put out their cigarettes in favour of a healthy sex life.

There are other factors as well as smoking that increase the risk of ED. Alcohol is a major one; we all know that too many drinks can make it difficult for a man to perform, but excessive alcohol intake on a regular basis can lead to impotence. Another cause is being overweight or obese because a high calorie diet and carrying excess fat increases blood pressure, which leads to ED.

High blood pressure occurs when the blood vessels become narrower, making it more difficult for the heart to pump blood efficiently round the body. This means that the penile tissues cannot as easily fill with blood and cause the penis to become erect.

There are issues that may be out of your control that can contribute to ED. Medical conditions such as heart disease, diabetes and prostate cancer are all known to hinder erectile function, so if you suffer from any of these conditions it’s important to make the right lifestyle choices to help keep your sex life as normal and healthy as possible.

What Can I Do To Reduce The Risk of Erectile Dysfunction?

  • Give Up Smoking – Even if you’ve been a smoker for years, don’t just accept that the damage is done; you can still dramatically reduce your risk of ED by giving up the fags. Plus, there added benefits to quitting, such as reducing the risk of heart attack, stroke, cancer and emphysema.
  • Lose Weight - Eat a healthy, calorie controlled diet to reach a healthy BMI. This will take the strain off your heart, reduce high blood pressure and give you loads more energy to have fun in the bedroom.
  • Exercise Regularly – Cardiovascular exercise gets your heart pumping and your blood flowing, and we know that healthy blood flow is essential for healthy erections.
  • Relax - Stress and anxiety can affect your ability to become erect, so if you’re worrying about failing to perform, you’ll only make it even more difficult. Try to relax, and if you’re still having trouble try one of the options below.

I Already Have Erectile Dysfunction: What Are My Options?

  • Injections, Medication and Hormone Patches – Your doctor may prescribe you one of these solutions if you suffer from ED as a result of a medical condition, but there are often side effects of drugs like this. For example there is evidence to suggest that hormone patches can increase the risk of prostate cancer, and that’s not a risk many men are willing to take.
  • Vacuum Pumps – This is an incredibly safe and natural option that allows you to achieve an erection almost immediately and maintain it for up to 30 minutes. By creating negative pressure around the penis, vacuum pumps draw blood into the tissues to make the penis erect. With regular use of a vacuum pump the blood vessels will become less narrow and allow the tissues to be filled with blood much easier, making it possible to achieve an erection naturally in the long term. 
  • Pelvic Floor Exercises for Men - Kegel exercises aren't just for women, they're also proven to be really beneficial for men too. In fact, a recent clinical study has shown Kegels for men to be as effective as prescribed erection enhancing drugs when done regularly over a 6-month period! Kegel8 V For Men is a unique pelvic floor exerciser designed especially for men which will help you with pelvic floor exercises easily, quickly and effectively, and has programmes clinically designed to treat erectile dysfunction with no drugs and no surgery.
  • Surgery – This a complex and invasive process which involves creating a reservoir in the abdomen to hold fluid which can be pumped into cylinders on each side of the penis. Surgery is a very last resort only considered by doctors in very special circumstances.
  • Herbal Remedies – If you feel uncomfortable taking a cocktail of chemicals to achieve an erection, try a 100% natural option. 
  • Penile Rings - This is an inexpensive but effective option that is particularly useful for men who struggle to maintain an erection. By placing a ring on the base of the penis you will stop blood from leaving the tissues, allowing you to maintain an erection for longer. Penile rings also a great option for premature ejaculation as it means the erection can be maintained even after climax.