Sexual Challenges for Middle-Aged Men

Experiencing challenges in your sex life is never a good thing, as failing to develop and sustain physical intimacy in your relationship can interfere with the emotional connection you are able to maintain with your partner or spouse. Relationships have ups and downs, both of which can impact your desire and interest in sex, but physical health concerns can also get in the way of a fulfilling and pleasurable sex life. As seen in research studies, it is common for any man to eventually have an encounter with importance, whether is a temporary condition brought on by momentary factors or a more long-term struggle impacted by chronic conditions.

The Research Tells All

Men are notorious for avoiding a doctor’s office, and though there is a common professional opinion that the numbers are grossly underestimated, research shows that between 20-30 million men are affected by erectile dysfunction within the United States. Around the world, that number leaps up to about 150 million men. Erection difficulty isn’t usually a stranger to most men with an active sex life, but when a man lacks the ability to get and sustain an erection that can provide sexual satisfaction for both partners at least 40% of the time, it’s more than just a case of the first night jitters or a long day at work. Early theories among the medical profession were that psychological problems were the root cause of men suffering from ED, but as more studies have investigated these sexual challenges, the problem is much more complex. For starters, age has been seen as a significant influential factor in the condition.

The Age Dilemma

The current research on the subject shows that 40% of all men over the age of 40 struggle with erectile dysfunction. In about 90% of all cases of persistent ED, the individuals are over the age of 50. One study conducted with more than 31,000 healthcare professionals between the ages of 53-90 was particularly revealing. Factors such as physical activity, smoking, alcohol use, and were included in the assessment, and the results showed that ability and performance levels declined as an individual aged. About a third of the respondents over the age of 50 reported a severe degree of dysfunction in their sex life and erection abilities.  About 2% of the respondents had their first experience with ED before they turned 40, and 4% of the men reported their first experiences as occurring between the ages of 40-49.  Healthy lifestyles and the absence of chronic disease significantly reduced the risk for developing ED, with exercise being a key impacting factor. Excessive TV habits, smoking, and being overweight were associated with some of the most risk-increasing factors for experiencing sexual dysfunction.

The Risk Factors

Though this study only looked at some of the most prevalent impacting factors for risk, there are several more than you should be aware of. As the statistics show the age for developing the first symptoms starts around middle-age, it is interesting to note the correlation between the onset of conditions and the change in lifestyles and health conditions that also tend to become more prevalent or habitual around the same time period. Since age has already been covered, let’s move on to discuss the others.

  1. Obesity: Not only is being overweight terrible for your heart health and overall BMI, but your body will also respond negatively to the excess fat by turning your testosterone into estrogen. A sedentary lifestyle with little to no exercise, combined with poor dietary choices, doesn’t just lead to more weight. It can also lead to problems with your sex life. However, this is a condition that is generally reversible. The right weight loss program and activity levels can help strengthen your erections.
  2. Diabetes: Anyone who has received a diagnosis of diabetes realizes the overwhelming seriousness of the situation. In addition to the other areas of concern, diabetes seriously increases the risk of ED, especially in aging men. In fact, 50% of men around the age of 40 with diabetes also struggle with erectile dysfunction. Medications and lifestyle changes can help you manage a diabetic condition, but it isn’t always reversible. Fortunately, there are medications and products like Mt. Everest that can help increase sexual performance when the mood is right.
  3. Heart Disease: In addition to the scary statistic that heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women around the world, trouble with your heart and cardiovascular system can also lead to increased risk of ED. High blood pressure and high cholesterol impact erections and sexual performance as well. It is important to pay attention to your erections and arousal, especially as you age. For men who have been healthy that develop erectile dysfunction, there are many who have received a diagnosis of heart disease less than five years after their penile difficulties. Early warning signs of the dangerous condition can come from your erection abilities, and by catching them early, you could prevent further development of heart disease.
  4. Smoking: Tobacco use is connected to more than just an increased risk of lung cancers. Tobacco decreases the rate of blood flow into the penis, which makes it harder to get and keep an erection. Fortunately, this is also a condition that can be reversed if you stop smoking or using tobacco.
  5. Medication: There are several medications that are associated with bringing on temporary conditions of ED, whether they are prescription or over-the-counter. Those who take blood pressure medications or antidepressants may notice reduced sexual abilities, as well as those on opioid medications, acid reflux pills, or some antihistamines. If you do experience some challenges, you can talk to your doctor about changing your prescription or altering your dose. This could clear up your troubles, but often your erections will return to normal once the medication is no longer taken. Alcohol and recreational drugs have a similar effect on your sexual performance.
  6. Psychological Influence: Your brain has an important role in triggering the right physical sexual responses to stimulation. If you are struggling with stress or another area of mental health, your brain may have difficulty processing the nerve connections and hormones needed to trigger an erection. Relationship struggles, grief, depression, anxiety, and performance anxiety can all lead to impotence. These conditions are often managed through treatment and support, leading to a potential reversed condition of ED.
  7. Cancer or Disease: Serious medical conditions like prostate cancer or STDs can lead to reduced sexual abilities. However, ED could also be a sign that this underlying condition may be present in the body. For this reason, it is crucial that you speak to a doctor as soon as you realize you are having consistent problems with your erections. Look for signs of painful ejaculation, diminished semen production, or rashes or bumps around the groin and on the penis. Blood in the urine is also a warning sign of something serious going on. Treatment for conditions may not reverse the ED, but the treatment could save your life. 

Facing the later years of life shouldn’t be plagued with sexual difficulties. ED can wreak havoc on your mind, your relationships, and your quality of life. Treatment is available, so there is no need to suffer. Talk to your doctor and discuss your options for dealing with erectile dysfunction.

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