There’s nothing more tragic than a flaccid penis! Well maybe Titanic, maybe Romeo and Juliet. Definitely Mickey Rourke in The Wrestler. But as a guy, we think you understand where we’re coming from. When a man can’t keep it up it’s a big low blow, affecting the id, ego, superego and every fiber of his being. You could even say a man’s happiness is partly decided by his sex life, love life and ability to provide for a family. Having problems with your erection is a big deal. So let’s talk about how to develop an erection when your penis up and quits on you.
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Why Does It Happen?
Erectile dysfunction refers not only to impotence but also to difficulty in maintaining an erection for the sexual encounter. It’s important to understand why this happens in the first place. Your penis works only because your heart and blood circulation give it power. According to Healthline blood flow problems can result in weak erections. It’s usually not a “natural” effect of aging, though lower testosterone does happen after a certain age.
But the most common physical causes of weak erections are heart disease, hardened arteries, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes. Besides heart issues, other physical causes may include liver or kidney disease, long-term tobacco use, and multiple sclerosis There are also some interactions with certain medications that can weaken erectile function.
This is why sites like Metro report that improving your health may be step one in overcoming. Obesity is often cited as a direct cause of weak erections, and according to some medical studies, losing just 10% of your body weight can improve erection quality. Regular exercise, about thirty minutes a day, is also mentioned as a positive health activity that directly improves sexual function. Other recommendations included avoiding alcohol (which has both a sedative and stimulant effect) and minimizing stress.
Emotional stress can definitely contribute to the problem, especially if a man worries so much about being hard that he develops performance anxiety. Simply put, he worries so much about staying hard he goes soft. He freaks out and scares the blood rise out of his penis, so to speak.
Anxiety also comes in different forms. Emotional distress because of partner conflicts, work issues, money troubles or even politics! Depression and other personality disorders usually cause problems with sexual function.
AskMen shares a very good point: calmness, relaxation and “chilling out, man” is the best environment for a hard erection. The entire idea of the fast, rough and high-intensity sex we see at the movies is not actually conducive to erectile function. Studies show that high levels of stress lead to high blood pressure and cholesterol, creating heart disease. Even shallow breathing can have negative effects on erectile strength or staying power. Deep, relaxed breathing, also known as diaphragm breathing, helps relax your body and encourages blood flow.
AskMen also brings home the point about health. What you eat determines sexual response. Meals that are hard to digest or “heavy” are not very healthy and your blood flow (and penis) suffers. The Mediterranean diet, which has many vegetables, beans, whole grains and fruits, is often mentioned as a health booster for men who suffer from ED. Whatever diet you choose, eliminating processed foods and eating more food packed with vitamins and nutrients is sure to have a beneficial effect not only on blood flow but on prostate health.
The Journal of Sexual Medicine states that men as young as 20 and 30 may experience ED symptoms, including weak erections. We usually think of weak erections as an older man’s problem, from 40 and onward. But young men can experience symptoms too, and it’s no coincidence younger men drink more, smoke more, and are less regimented when it comes to staying healthy.
How to Develop an Erection with Cock Rings
Dieting and exercise should give your libido a jumpstart, but some of these techniques can be used instead of, or in addition to reshuffling your diet and exercise regimen.
AskMen also reviewed another popular ED cure—the cock ring! If “cock ring” sounds a bit too dungeon-like for your tastes, you can also refer to it as the C-ring. True, the visual of a tight piece of elastic wrapped around your penis may be intimidating, but of all the techniques we’ve mentioned, this one will have the most immediate effect.
The cock ring keeps your erection hard because it traps blood flow. The ring goes around the base of your penis and behind the testicles, which promptly makes the penis harder and more sensitive. In fact, it works so well that men are advised NOT to wear cock rings for over 15-30 minutes (depending on your own threshold). Why?
If a man wears a cock ring for too long, he is at risk of enduring a priapism—a permanent erection that doesn’t go away even after stimulation ceases. Ischemic priapism results from physical trauma; nonischemic priapism happens when blood cannot drain from the penis. Emergency room treatment is the only way to return your penis back to normal function. If you never go to get a priapism fixed, the worst case scenario is John-Bobbitt scary—your penis may experience gangrene and have to be amputated!
Now don’t freak out. Wearing cock rings responsibly won’t cause any abnormal reaction. As a rule don’t risk wearing them longer than 20-25 minutes. If you start to feel discomfort, if your penis goes numb, if it turns white or feels suddenly cold, take the ring off. It’s as simple as that. The problem comes when guys put on a ring and then fall asleep or get high on cocaine, or try to have sex for hours. It’s just not natural to stay erect for a long period of time and it’s dangerous to put your body to the test.
How to Develop an Erection
If cock rings isn’t your thing and dieting is too abstract, there are other methods that can help you stay hard. Many of these involve simply altering your sexual routine. The Metro / Medical Daily article went on to say that erection quality can be improved by simply changing sexual positions, better managing your time, and to give yourself the luxury of real privacy.
Men can actually develop weak erections solely because they’re bored of the same routine. Spending time talking to your partner about new fantasies or new games may help spark your penis’ “interest”. Spending more alone time with your partner, away from the kids is a good idea because frankly, children running around the house are anti-aphrodisiacs. Romance and eroticism is best enjoyed when mom and dad have private time. It’s also smart to time these erotic sessions on your day off, since sex at the end of the day (after shopping, cooking and working) is always going to be “weak” in comparison.
The Role of Nitric Oxide and Aphrodisiacs
If you want to develop an erection by more natural means, consider this. According to Men’s Health, erections and yawning processes are both controlled by nitric oxide. Nitric oxide is the explosion you need to fire up your mojo. There are two ways to go about improve nitric oxide production. Be healthy, be hydrated and get plenty of sleep.
Sadly, some men work so hard and barely sleep at all, meaning they may be experiencing weak erections purely out of tiredness and lack of REM sleep. Case in point? When you do get solid sleep time, you get multiple and long-lasting erections during those dreams. Try sleeping more and seeing if that affects your erection quality.
The other option would be to ingest food or drugs that promote nitric oxide production. One source states that there are completely natural sources that can help, such as:
There are also herbal products like grape seed extract, vitamin C and garlic, arginine and ginseng that have shown promise in certain trials. However, these studies are not as conclusive as pharmaceutical drugs such as Sildenafil or Viagra, which has a tested effect that works.
Viagra works by “inhibiting cGMP-specific phosphodiesterase type 5” which is an enzyme that reduces cGMP activity and THAT is what regulates blood flow and reaches the penis. (You probably only understood the last part of that sentence!)
Simply put, Viagra is so effective it’s not only prescribed by doctors to older, out of shape patients (who can handle the effect on the heart) but is also used recreationally by younger men who want to enhance their performance. ‘
The joke is on them, however…there is no proof that Viagra actually does ANYTHING for younger men who already have fast and easy erections. Studies showed that aside from a refractory time improvement, it didn’t even affect the strength of erections! The lesson is, don’t bother using Viagra if you don’t have medical issues.
Not only is it ineffective without ED, but it comes with unpredictable side effects like headaches, heartburn, and worst of all, prolonged erections or priapisms, which as we remember, is a very bad thing. And what’s worse? Penile gangrene or having to face the nurse with a huge stiffy that’s threatening your life?
Viagra is also abused with illegal drugs at parties, particularly with ecstasy, and this poses another major health risk.
How to Develop an Erection with Your Partner
While the ideal scenario is for a man to conquer ED alone, it’s simply not feasible. It’s too great of a risk not to get medically cleared by a doctor, especially if the blood flow problem is related to heart disease.
Furthermore, your partner is in the best position to help you, since she can better respond to your cues and direct the pace of your sexual encounter, so that it doesn’t have to be too awkward or too clinical.
In sex therapy, particularly in treating premature ejaculation and erectile dysfunction, both partners are taught to eliminate the goal of orgasm and ejaculation, and instead focus on sensual caressing. If you have weak erections on a regular basis, but medical clearance, then the solution may be as simple as letting your excitement grow at a slower but more natural pace.
Start with touching proceed to petty and kissing and then proceed to foreplay. Increase the foreplay for up to an hour. You can maintain your sexual arousal level at a moderate pace (like a 7 or 8 on the scale of pleasure with 10 being the highest) even without a full erection.
Eventually, your sexual excitement will peak even without the fast and rough stimulation of penetration. Your erections will feel firmer because you can savor a slightly lower level of excitement and extend it for minutes on end. Your erection will come and go (and good thing too because you don’t want forced pressure on the penis for more than 30 minutes) but your mental state will be consistently aroused, and thus erections are tighter, stronger and more naturally long-lasting.
Many doctors and sex educators are coming down on porn, particularly as relates to ED. Porn is simply too dramatic and robs a man of full body excitement. He struggles to “keep up” with the porn star and spends a lot of time resisting the urge to come. Masturbating without porn, and actually learning your body’s response time to stimulation, can give you more control over your erection quality and ejaculation.
Last but not least, remember to let your partner be part of the experience. Change up the routine and explore each other’s fantasies. Spend more time communicating and less time doing what you think works. When you practice giving and receiving you are better able to learn what works individually and how to implement that pleasure into a shared routine between both partners.
If you want to last longer, be harder for longer patches of time, and feel the “tingle” of a fully engorged erection, then make an effort to breathe deeply and focus on relaxing. Your partner can help you do this and can even practice breathing with you, to enhance her own orgasmic response.
How to develop your erections is a lesson in learning your body and teaching your partner how to respond.