What are the causes of male sexual impotence?

March 8, 2018

Male sexual impotence has become a matter of great concern for many men. The inability to get or maintain an erection, which enables a satisfactory sexual relationship as a couple, causes the man great suffering and frustration. It can also make them feel worthless and useless.

This importance and excessive concern is what is often responsible for the fact that the impotence continues over a prolonged period of time. It immerses the person more and more in a one way street with no way out.

Although it always used to be a problem that affected older men, erectile dysfunction now affects many younger men. A quarter of the men who suffer from it are under 40. This is confirmed in a study carried out by researcher Paolo Capogrosso, MD affiliated with the Vita-Salute University of San Rafael, in Milan (Italy) and published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine.

So, why do young men also suffer from impotence when they should be supposedly at the peak of their manhood? Current lifestyle has much to say about this, but it isn’t the only aspect. It also seems that having placing sex on a pedestal has much to do with it. The idea that men have to perform like a “hero”, or not wanting to disappoint their partner could be the trigger that causes sexual impotence.

Sexual impotence and destructive demands

The stress we live with today is the cause of a multitude of psychological pathologies, and amongst them is our sexual capacity. There are other risk factors  such as obesity, smoking and alcohol abuse, but stress seems to be the main culprit. So, in most cases, sexual impotence has a psychological rather than physical origin.

The real cause has been the deification of sex, the fact we have put it on a pedestal. Although it is true that sex brings a multitude of benefits, both physically and for the growth of the relationship, it should not be the most important factor on a man’s scale of values.

Man with anxiety

This idealization of sex, of which the pornographic industry is in some way responsible, places more and more demands on men. And if those demands are not fulfilled as they should be, then a man will consider himself worthless. Unable to make any woman happy, a failure. If a man has in his mind that he cannot allow himself to fail that fear of failure is precisely what leads to impotence.

Poor sexual education

These demands are the result of the poor sexual education we receive. These preconceived and unrealistic ideas have circulated throughout society like a wildfire. One of these ideas is that a man is responsible for a woman’s pleasure.

And so what are the consequences of these demands? What happens when a man feels he is worthless if he can’t fulfill them? You guessed it – anxiety. The anxiety that prevents us from living our lives to the full. The anxiety that blocks us mentally, and transfers this blockage to our body. A vicious circle thus ensues.

The parasympathetic nervous system is responsible for producing an erection. It is the system that is responsible for relaxing and resting the body after great effort. In this way, although we relate an erection to excitement, the truth is that in order for this to occur, the person must be relaxed. This will permit the corpora cavernosa to fill with blood and produce an erection.

The problem is that when we are anxious, when we perceive danger of some sort, then we activate the sympathetic nervous system, the one in charge of activating and surviving, thus inhibiting the parasympathetic system. It is at this point that dysfunction occurs, since it seems survival from is  more important than the sexual act that was about to take place.

How can we get rid of sexual impotence?

The first thing we can do is to accept what is happening to us. Remember that the more you fight, the more anxious you become. And the more anxious you become, the more chance there is of impotence. Therefore, we have to stop this never-ending circle, and acceptance is very good for this.

Once we accept what is happening to us, we can accept it as something normal. We should then talk about it with our partner or even with a friend. The next step will be to carry out some exercises aimed at solving the problem. Of course, there should be no demands placed on the man, or we will be back to square one.

One of the exercises, at a cognitive level, will be to modify our beliefs and misconceptions about dysfunction, as well as about sex.

Anxiety because of sexual impotence

To do this we can either do some research ourselves or consult with an expert who’ll be able to dismantle all our unrealistic beliefs on the subject. We can also do it ourselves by changing our “shoulds” and “have tos” to “preferences” or “desires”. At the behavioral level, we should practice paradoxical intention with our partner. This technique involves forcing ourselves not have an erection nor a complete sexual relationship.

Massages and games

The objective is to exchange massages, games, and other pleasurable activities, and enjoy them together. There shouldn’t be any demands to go any further and take part in the full sexual act. If the exercise is done correctly, the most likely result is that the erection will appear.  This is because we have let ourselves go, and anxiety hasn’t been allowed to block us.

As a complement, it is worthwhile to practice some relaxation techniques, such as yoga or mindfulness. These will allow us to be more conscious and be able to activate our parasympathetic nervous system. If you feel all of this refers to your current situation, don’t try and hide it. Don’t feel embarrassed. Embarrassment will prevent you from finding the solution. Consult with a specialist and practice these exercises. You will notice how the problem of impotence will disappear. You’ll become more confident, and you’ll be able to enjoy your sex life again, as before.