How erectile dysfunction could be an early warning sign of 5 silent killers | The Sun

IF YOU sometimes struggle to get it up, it can feel embarrassing to admit or talk about.

But the reality is you're not alone. Around one in four men under 40 experience erectile dysfunction and the number doubles in older age groups.

And doctors warn it is important men start talking about the condition more, as it can hint at more than just a disheartening experience between the sheets.

According to GP and TV medic, Dr Hilary Jones, erectile dysfunction can be a telltale sign more serious health issues.

Also an adviser for erectile dysfunction gel Eroxon, the GP said the condition "is a growing concern".

"Both age and obesity are factors in the number of ED cases, and with an ageing population that’s also becoming more overweight, it’s clear that this is a problem which won’t be going away fast.”

Read more on men’s health

A closer look at new erectile dysfunction drug Eroxon

‘Viagra-like’ drug that lasts up to 36 hours goes on sale WITHOUT prescription

“Although many of us would like to roll back the years, getting older is a fact of life. So, it’s wise to deal with the factors that can be controlled," he added.

Without further ado, here are five deeper health problems your erectile dysfunction could be alerting you to.

1. Poor cardiovascular health

Dr Hilary said that for older men the most common reason for erectile problems is lack of blood flow to the penis, which can be a sign of heart disease.

“This is why it’s always important to investigate the cause of ED," he said.

Most read in Health


Urgent warning as UK faces 'very real risk' of new outbreak of killer disease


It's official – sweetener in Diet Coke IS a cancer risk, say health chiefs


Viagra use in over-80s soars – and drug 'has surprising health benefit' too


My sister flew to Turkey for weight loss surgery – within 48 hours she was dead

"The penis is often a barometer of men’s cardiovascular health and ED can be an early sign of more serious problems such as hardening of the arteries."

Previous studies have also indicated that men with high blood pressure – also referred to as hypertension – are twice as likely to have erectile dysfunction as men with normal blood pressure.

High blood pressure can narrow the blood vessels and make it harder to get an erection.

2. Diabetes

Not being able to get or sustain an erection could also be a side effect of diabetes, according to Dr Hilary.

Research conducted by Eroxon found that men who experienced erectile dysfunction tended to report at least one other health issue.

Some 22 per cent of sufferers who participated in the study said they also had diabetes.

Meanwhile, 30 per cent reported having high blood pressure.

3. Mental health struggles

Dr Jones said: “In younger men, erectile dysfunction is often rooted in psychological issues such as anxiety, depression, and sexual inhibitions."

The specialist also suggested that easy access to pornography is an increasingly common factor causing erectile problems.

Specialist in sexual medicine and psychosexual therapist, Dr Catherine Hood, said research shows that more than a third of men (36 per cent) watch pornography at least once a week, and 13 per cent view sexually explicit material most days.

4. Obesity

According to Dr Hilary, four out of five men who experience erectile issues are overweight or obese.

"Having a body mass index of 30 or more triples the risk of erectile dysfunction," he said.

The GP went on: "When you consider that two-thirds of men are now overweight or obese it is easy to see why the number of men having difficulty achieving and maintaining an erection continues to rise so relentlessly.

"It’s important to try and take steps to lose weight to reduce the likelihood of erectile dysfunction.”

5. Testosterone deficiency

Dr Hilary said that an estimated 8 per cent aged 50 to 79 started exhibiting lower levels of testosterone, which could affect their erectile function.

According to The Sun on Sunday's resident doctor, Dr Jeff Foster: “Testosterone deficiency is largely under-investigated and is often untreated because symptoms such as tiredness, poor concentration and depression are too easily dismissed as signs of ageing.

"Plus, hormonal changes are often only associated with women.”

When should I see a doctor?

Dr Hilary advised anyone finding that erectile dysfunction is a recurring problem to visit their GP "to unearth what may be causing it".

"Other physical condition linked to erectile dysfunction include Parkinson’s, obesity and alcoholism,” he added.

Read More on The Sun

Little-known rules for your own garden that can land you with £12k in fines

I wanted cute hair extensions but they left me bald, I had to shave my whole head

According to the NHS, things like swearing off smoking, eating a healthy diet and exercising daily could also help matters.

Meanwhile, a leading urologist reveals four ways to get a better erection, by making simple lifestyle tweaks.

Source: Read Full Article