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6 Reasons To Talk To Your Doctor About Erectile Dysfunction

Posted on April 12, 2024 by Henry Ford Health Staff

Most men will experience erectile dysfunction (ED) at some point during their lives. However, that’s not to say ED symptoms should be ignored. Recurring ED can be detrimental to your mental health and can put you at risk for other health issues.

Although it’s not the easiest thing to talk about, Ali Dabaja, M.D., a urologist and reproductive medicine and sexual health expert at Henry Ford Health, gives some key reasons for talking to your doctor about ED.

1. Improve Your Sex Life

As you grow older, your sexual health and relationship toward sex undergo a transformation. It’s not uncommon to have challenges along this journey. Facing them, however, doesn’t mean a permanent loss for enjoying sex with your partner. Recent studies have shown that a healthy sex life can improve mental and physical health. It’s worth addressing the problem with a doctor in order to get the root of the problem and find a solution.

2. Control Diabetes

Diabetes can cause damage to blood vessels that are crucial for your sexual health. This increases the risk for high blood pressure if ED goes untreated. Symptoms from ED can also make it harder to manage diabetes, so Dr. Dabaja says it is important to talk to your doctor about what you can do to successfully manage your diabetes, including lifestyle changes and changes to your medication.

3. Improve Mental Health

ED can be linked to stress, anxiety and depression, and the symptoms of those conditions may interfere with your sex life. In some cases, though, ED may be the cause of depression, as the condition can lead to the development of low self-esteem, sadness or frustration. Discussing how to approach ED with your doctor may alleviate negative thoughts and help boost self-esteem.

4. Manage Sleep Apnea

Obstructive Sleep Apnea is one of several types of sleep apnea, where you stop breathing during sleep. This can not only lead to a lack of restful sleep, but also can affect your oxygen levels and can be a direct cause for ED.

5. Reduce the Risk of Heart Disease

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“Erectile dysfunction can just as accurately predict future cardiovascular problems as smoking, family history of heart attack and high cholesterol, addressing your regular occurrence of ED with your doctor, you may be able to better monitor your risk for heart disease and seek preventative treatments for it,” says Dr. Dabaja.

6. Break The Stigma Surrounding ED

While ED may be more common among older men, it also affects younger men, who may be embarrassed to talk with their doctor. By going through the process, you can provide helpful advice for others who may be too uncomfortable to come forward to their doctors about their sexual health.

More Reasons To Talk To Your Doctor

If you need more reasons to talk with your doctor about ED, here are a few. The visit can also identify health risks or conditions, including low testosterone, chronic inflammation or medication side effects.

No matter the reason for talking to your doctor about ED, they can suggest different treatment methods to help with that and any other underlying health issues that can be more serious.

“Not all treatments will include taking pills. Treatment may focused more on lifestyle changes, such as weight loss, reducing the amount of alcohol you drink, and even counseling to improve your mental health,” says Dr. Dabaja.

Also, it is important to always schedule regular checkups with your doctor to build a rapport with them so that having these types of conversations are more comfortable for you to manage your overall health and your sexual health.

Reviewed by Dr. Ali Dabajaa urologist who sees patients at Henry Ford Medical Center in Dearborn and at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit.

Categories : FeelWell

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