Sex – It’s supposed to be fun, intense and give you pleasure. But there are times sexual intimacy becomes a trial and a cause for unhappiness in relationships. One such physical problem that makes life in the bedroom miserable and stressful is erectile dysfunction (ED).
Unfortunately, many men don’t want to admit to having a problem and blame their long work hours, office stress or tiredness for their lack of libido. Some unfairly blame their partners or pick unnecessary fights as an excuse to avoid having sex completely.
It is sad to think of all the negative emotions, failed relationships and broken homes that are the consequence of a medical condition that can be treated so easily. But treatment depends on what has caused the ED, which is something only a doctor can diagnose.
ED is not always the woman’s fault! Many factors can lead to ED. Psychological factors such as stress and anxiety can trigger the condition. Non-communicable diseases such as high blood pressure, hyperlipidemia and diabetes can also contribute. Dr B. Shashidhar, Consultant Microsurgical Andrology and Men's health, Manipal Fertility, Bangalore shares what should you do if your partner has ED:
Work it out, together
Because sex is not just a physical act but also an emotional interaction, it is imperative for women to support and work with their partners to help them manage ED. No matter how embarrassing it may seem, couples should discuss this openly, with sensitivity and consideration for the feelings of both partners.
I encourage women not to ignore or neglect this issue because it can become a long-term problem that can ultimately destroy your relationship. Here is one way to do it: ‘ACT’ as a team, which stands for three crucial elements: Activity, Communication and Treatment.
Be active together
I recommend that couples start exercising together, perhaps by going out for a morning or evening walk or playing a sport together. This has many benefits as exercise helps to reduce blood pressure and sugar levels, which can help improve ED, especially if it is linked to hypertension or diabetes. Exercising outdoors helps to reduce stress, which further improves ED. Moreover, this gives couples an opportunity to build their own relationship, which of course is directly linked to sexual intimacy.
Communicate with each other
During the early stages of a relationship, many couples typically spend long hours on the phone or in person, simply talking to each other. But that time changes over time with couples sitting together in a restaurant though each is busy on their phones.
Communication is vital for a healthy relationship. And a healthy emotional relationship translates to a better physical relationship or better understanding in case of an issue such as ED. For this reason, couples should set aside time to talk. I advise couples to have date nights often, even after marriage. Try going away for a short vacation to reconnect and bring back the ‘magic’ into the relationship.
Seek out the right treatment
Even couples with the healthiest relationships could still face challenges in the bedroom because ED is often caused by an underlying medical condition which must be diagnosed and treated. So, couples should not delay going to the right type of doctor in order to receive the right treatment plan.
If a middle-aged man develops ED, it could be a red flag for heart disease a few years down the line. For a couple trying to conceive, ED may make it difficult for the relationship to be consummated thereby delaying the process. Above all couples should not give in to the ‘stigma’ that some associate with the condition. Your resolve and the doctor’s diagnosis can together fix this problem very quickly....