Sexual arousal is a complicated process that encapsulates the sensitivities of the physical and mental being.  The process involves hormones, nerves, blood vessels, and muscles, which work together to a rigid erection. The absence of any one of these components can cause a disorder or dysfunction. In the case of men, it is a sexual disorder commonly known as erectile dysfunction (ED).

ED is referred to as the persistent inability to attain or maintain an erection that is rigid enough for satisfactory sexual intercourse. Experts dictate that many men aged between 40 and 70 are affected by the condition however, age is not a defining factor of the disorder. Mental and physical health also plays a vital role in sexual prowess.

Studies show that stress and other mental health conditions can contribute to the development/further deterioration of  ED. This leads to prolonged symptoms that increase in intensity. Minor health issues and injuries can also slow down sexual responses. The anxiety that comes with slower responses can completely shut down arousal tendencies as well.

How to Identify Erectile Dysfunction

The failure to achieve and/or sustain an erection is an issue that men rarely acknowledge. It is a highly sensitive topic that leaves even the best of us red-faced. The disorder significantly affects every facet of a man’s life. Thus identifying the condition and seeking help is an absolute necessity. Due to the silence surrounding the issue and symptom disclosure, making it hard for professionals to obtain an accurate diagnosis.

Below are a set of signs and symptoms which can help identify ED:

·         Reduced desire for sex

·         The failure to get an erection

·         The inability to maintain an erection

These symptoms are usually persistent and have mild to severe expression. Men are urged to note down the symptoms they are experiencing to develop a comparison chart that can track their progress when treatment is received.

The Best Erectile Dysfunction Treatment on the Market

In the past, ED was considered a complex condition that requires drastic treatments such as penile injections, suppositories, vacuum pumps and genital intravenous drips. In 1998 the treatment of erectile dysfunction took a drastic turn as invasive procedures were discontinued in favour of more conservative medicines like Viagra.

The active ingredient, sildenafil citrate in Viagra, was a critical component to the treatment’s successful results. In later years the patent for Viagra expired, which made way for generic ED treatments. One of the most popular being sildenafil, a tablet named after Viagra’s active ingredient.

According to experts, sildenafil is the ideal treatment for erectile dysfunction as it was explicitly designed to be a PDE-5 inhibitor. In addition, it has an exceptional tolerability and safety profile with a mechanism of action that works in conjunction with normal bodily processes. The balanced safety and tolerability profiles mean that the tablet can be used by middle age and elderly men, an age group where ED is most prevalent.

The tablet can also be used for hypertension and angina pectoris because it successfully expands blood vessels in this region. The tablet is bioequivalent to the famous Viagra brand and is typically used as a first-line treatment. The pill also has a plethora of positive reviews and successful outcomes behind it.

Below are key facts to remember about the treatment:

·         The tablet takes thirty to sixty minutes to work/to show visible results. These results or effects last for up to 4 hours.

·         The effects of sildenafil do not automatically present themselves once it is consumed. Users need to be sexually stimulated for the effects to be activated.

·         The most common side effects of the tablet are headaches, hot flushes, nausea, and dizziness. These effects are usually short-lived and disappear on their own. They often occur at the beginning of every treatment as the body gets used to the treatment.

·         The pill should not be taken with contraindicating medicines as it can cause serious side effects.

How does an Erectile Dysfunction Treatment Work?

To identify how ED treatments work, patients must understand how erections are induced. An erection is fueled by stimulation. Following stimulation, a natural chemical called cyclic guanosine monophosphate is released into the body. The cGMP chemical relaxes smooth muscle tissue located in the arteries of the penis.

CGMP facilitates blood flow to the penile area and traps it there, resulting in an erection. Post sexual intercourse, the enzyme PDE-5 (phosphodiesterase type 5) ‘turns off’ the erection by discarding the cGMP chemical from the penile region. The blood that was trapped within the penis is then released, causing the erection to subside.

ED medications are known as PDE5 inhibitors as they block the function of PDE5 enzymes. This means that cGMP is not discarded or broken down, which allows the tissues in the penis to remain relaxed distended and filled with blood.

ED pills are highly effective in treating the condition, but they do not work without assistance. These medicines only work in conjunction with stimulation, meaning that users do not have a permanent erection after consuming them.  

Tips to Maximise Your ED Treatment

The treatment of erectile dysfunction is a simple and easy process that involves consuming a tablet, such as sildenafil. ED treatments like these must always be swallowed whole. It should not be chewed, broken, split or crushed. In addition to these basic usage guidelines, patients can use the following tips to maximise the effects of the treatment:

·         Balance your diet:

-Introduce more fruit, vegetable and whole grains into your diet

-Reduce your intake of saturated fat and stay away from high carb/fat take outs

-Minimise your salt intake – the salt dosage should be kept at 6g per day

-Avoid grapefruit and grapefruit products when taking ED meds such as sildenafil as it can reduce the efficacy of the tablet.

·         Reduce your alcohol intake:

-Alcohol should be avoided entirely when taking this tablet as it can affect your response to treatment.

-If alcohol consumption is necessary, keep your consumption below 2 units

·         Eliminate nicotine/tobacco use

-By discontinuing nicotine/tobacco use or smoking, patients will find that their breathing becomes more regulated.

-By stopping nicotine or tobacco use (smoking), blood flow to the penis is improved, and stress levels are

reduced, which allows the ED pill to carry out its function more efficiently.

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