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Restoring Interest in Sex After a Diagnosis of ED

Restoring Interest in Sex After a Diagnosis of ED

Sex After ED

Impotence has a troubling, even devastating, effect on both a man and his relationship. For the man faced with the difficulty of an erectile dysfunction diagnosis, hopelessness, frustration, and confusion might be just a few of the emotions that he must grapple with. It may be slightly comforting to know that as a man, it is common to have problems with your erections. The key to overcoming these problems and restoring your interest and pleasure in sex is through effective treatment. Not just for the physical conditions resulting from or impacting your erections, but treating the fallout that may have happened in your relationship from your inability to perform well during sex.

The Prevalence of ED

It should be noted that erectile dysfunction is common in at least 50% of the men in the United States. It may not occur for long periods of time, but most males will experience a form of sexual dysfunction at some point in their sex life. Numerically speaking, it affects near 30 million men within the country and over 140 million men around the world. Even though it is common, is often not treated or addressed as soon as it is first noticed. All too often men will deny that they are experiencing erection difficulties, blaming things like stress, fatigue, or even their partner as the problem within the relationship. The longer ED is left unaddressed, the more harm it can cause to the relationship and the more difficult it will be to have a fulfilling and pleasurable sex life.  Getting the initial diagnosis doesn’t signal the end to your sex life but should give you hope that a new beginning lies ahead for it. There are several medications and treatments available, though things like lifestyle changes can also have an impact on your success with moving past a challenging and uneventful sex life.

The Ability to Move Past ED

Being diagnosed with erectile dysfunction will take a physical toll on your body, but it can have an emotional impact as well. Dealing with emotions of anger, sadness, low self-esteem, and a lack of confidence may leaving you feeling that sex and intimacy need to be avoided. This is common and natural. However, your emotional state will have an equally frustrating impact on your sex life, which will also impact your relationship. It is easy for couples that are trying to cope with an ED diagnosis to grow apart and feel sexually frustrated. With the right attention and a commitment to working together, you can move past ED and restore what you`ve lost. Keep in mind that treatment takes time, and you will each need to be patient as you make progress. Treatment plans will vary by individual, and what may have worked for someone else may not be what is right for you. However, you can use these tips to bring back your interest in sex and fill the void of pleasure and satisfaction that has been missing since your ED first started.

  1. Start With Communication. The most important thing you can do for your sex life is to communicate with your partner. Talk about your fears and your desires, even if you know you can`t fulfill what you may be wanting sexually. You need to convey your commitment and interest with your partner since it is understandable that your partner may feel undesirable or unattractive when you are suffering from low libido or erection difficulties. Getting your sex life back to a place that is pleasurable will mean remaining open and honest with your partner, even when things are difficult. Your spouse needs to know that everything is okay between you. You can also communicate you need for help, and perhaps seeking out the assistance of a sex therapist can help work out any other issues that are clouding your sex life.
  2. Remember to Relax. While it one of the biggest contributors to conditions of ED, anxiety can also impact your recovery and your relationship, Anxiety can be a psychological condition that impacts physical functions. Performance anxiety is a condition where a man worries over his performance in the bedroom, but it can also interfere with feeling pleasure and satisfaction. The more you are worried about the experience, the less likely you will be to enjoy the experience. It can be hard to block out thoughts of ED when you are getting intimate with your spouse or partner, but the more you think about it, the more likely it will negatively impact your erection. There are medications that can be taken to help create a hard erection and increase your libido, but in addition to using Mt. Everest, you will also want to relax your body and mind. While the medical compound can be used to increase sexual desire, it won’t do any good if you can’t get past the moments needed to get you into bed. Deep breathing exercises and massage techniques are just a few of the ways you can relax your mind and body, allowing you to be more receptive and open to the pleasure of touch.
  3. Rekindle Your Relationship. In the early days of your relationship, there was probably passion and excitement that never seemed like it would end. Each touch you shared was electric and each joke or look would incite anticipation for fulfillment. It wasn’t always about the likes and dislikes of your sex life, though this period of discovery led to a lot of excitement and newness in the bedroom. You don’t have to use sex to get to know your partner better. You can find ways to laugh with each other, spend time kissing and cuddling, or experimenting in new ways. You may need the extra foreplay and time together to induce a state of arousal, but you may also find that you really enjoy this new approach to intimacy. Having more excitement and passion to look forward to can generate new interest in sex and exploring new positions or approaches with your partner or spouse.
  4. Change Your Unhealthy Habits. There are certain lifestyle habits that can make it harder to overcome erectile dysfunction. Smoking and alcohol use are two things that can damage your erection and arousal abilities. Illicit drug use can also impact your sex life negatively, as well as your overall health. Your physician may also speak to you about any influence your diet and weight may have on your condition, recommending that you follow a protocol like the HCG diet that will bring your weight back under control. A large majority of men who suffer from obesity also find themselves facing a diagnosis of ED.

The Importance of Getting Your Interest Back

Restoring an attitude of playfulness can help you move past a reluctance to be intimate or sexual with your partner. Getting creative with your sex life, such as sexy texts, a risqué board game, or playful toys can create renewed interest in having fun with your sex partner even while you undergo treatment for ED. It is possible to still feel sexually fulfilled even when your erection is struggling. Keeping physical and emotional intimacy in your relationship can create pleasure and satisfaction that can weather the challenges of life, including a diagnosis of erectile dysfunction.


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About the author

Dr. Constance Odom, MD

7 min read