Male impotence or erectile dysfunction is one of the major problems that affect male sexual life. This is a health problem that leads to sexual dysfunction characterized by lack of the ability to maintain or achieve penis erection during sexual intercourse. Penile erection is the hydraulic effect of entered blood retained in the penis as a result of sexual arousal. Male impotence occurs when there is a problem in transmission of signals from the brain nerves and those in the penis when there is sexual arousal. Below are some of the causes of male impotence.
1. Physiological and psychological problems
The major cause of erectile dysfunction is physiological dysfunction of the body especially when no erection is attained at all. However, if there are some instance when erection is attained the cause might be caused as a result of psychological problems or combination of both psychological and physiological problems.
Older men are more likely to experience erectile dysfunction compared to younger men. This is because older men are more prone to diseases such as high blood pressure, diabetes, stroke that are associated with impotence. Age also comes with decreased functioning of body system that might also affect sexual performance through reduced erection.
3. Diabetes mellitus
Impotence tends to develop earlier by about ten to fifteen years among men suffering from diabetes mellitus. This is mainly caused by greater severity and earlier onset of atherosclerosis that reduce blood delivery to the penis as a result of narrowed arteries. The insufficient blood in the penis leads to the impotence. The problem is enhanced if a patient suffering from diabetes smokes cigarettes or is obese.
4. High blood pressure
Men with essential hypertension are more prone to suffer from impotence because of low production of nitric oxide by the arteries that lead to problems in erection.
5. Cardiovascular diseases
The major cause of cardiovascular diseases is atherosclerosis that leads to hardened and narrowed arteries, thus reducing the rate of blood flow in the body. When arteries found in the penis are and other pelvic organs are narrowed, insufficient blood is delivered leading to erectile dysfunction.
There are some medications that lead to impotence as one of their side effects. Those medicines that cause erectile dysfunction are mostly the ones used in treatment of high blood pressure, antidepressants, appetite suppressants and tranquilizers.
7. Anxiety and depression
Some of the psychological problems that might lead to impotence include guilt, depression, stress, low self esteem, fear of sexual failure or performance anxiety and stress. The problem affects the functioning of the brain that coordinates the penis nerves leading to the dysfunctioning. Medications used in treating depression may lead to ejaculatory problems and erectile dysfunction.
8. Substance abuse
Abusing of different substance such as cocaine, crystal meth, alcohol, heroin and marijuana can contribute to impotence. Alcoholism leads to damage of the nerves that lead to shrinking of testicles and low levels of testosterone thus increasing vulnerability of impotence.
9. Smoking cigarettes
Smoking cigarettes enhances atherosclerosis, thus making one more prone to impotence.
10. Spinal or nerve damage
Nerve damage as a result of accident, trauma or surgical procedures can lead to erectile dysfunction. Injury to pelvic nerves as a result of radiation of the prostate, long term diabetes or prostatectomy can also lead to impotence.