Today, we have many ways to treat ED. For some men, making a few healthy lifestyle changes is all that is needed to solve the problem. Quitting smoking, losing excess weight, and increasing physical activity may help some men regain sexual function.
Cutting back on any drugs with harmful side effects is considered next. Psychotherapy and behavior modifications in selected patients has been helpful. In rare cases, surgery involving veins or arteries may be considered. However, most men can be treated with a simple medication that relaxes muscles and increases blood flow to the penis.
How Do Men Get an Erection?
To understand how to best treat ED, let’s look at how erections are achieved in the first place. An erection is the result of increased blood flow into the penis. Blood flow is usually stimulated by either sexual thoughts or intimate contact.
When a man becomes sexually excited, muscles in the penis relax. This relaxation allows for increased blood flow through the penile arteries. This blood fills two chambers inside the penis called the corpora cavernosa. As the chambers fill with blood, the penis grows rigid. Erection ends when the muscles contract and the accumulated blood can flow out through the penile veins.
ED can occur because of problems at any stage of the erection process.