Why More Young Men Are Having Erection Problems?

In the past erectile dysfunction was largely associated with ageing and considered a natural part thereof. The current stats, however, are showing a worrying trend as the prevalence of erectile disorders is shifting to a younger population.

Based on traditional figures, 50% of people in their 50s have erection difficulties. However, more recent studies have revealed a growing prevalence in young men in their thirties. It is necessary to look into this issue and establish what could be causing the problem.

It is obvious that the lives we lead now are different compared to those of the olden days. With all the technology, work demands, changes in diet and so much more, life in the modern world can definitely be called unnatural. And it’s no surprise that unnatural living brings about some serious health issues including erectile dysfunction.

The future projection of the situation is even scarier. According to forecasts, in about a decade more men will be suffering from infertility. This is a wakeup call. We need to pick out whatever it is we are doing wrong and make it right.


Diet plays a major role in the wellbeing of an individual. What you eat determines your health. It is obvious that we are now eating more processed foods made with all those flavorings and sweeteners that keep you coming back for more. At times you feel guilty for eating so much ice cream and junk food but you always find an excuse. Well, I’ll take a morning jog and rectify things or I’ll eat healthy tomorrow. The cycle goes on and on. Eventually, you come to the realization that things need to change but it is already too late.

How often do you eat greens and what how much space do they occupy on your plate? Vegetables are healthy but still it’s meat, meat, meat all over the place all the time. And eating too much meat has been associated with inflammation, which causes endothelial damage. This directly leads to erectile dysfunction alongside other chronic conditions.

An unhealthy diet also results in declining testosterone levels. Testosterone is responsible for men’s sex health and also gives you the energy and drive to take care of your daily chores. Not to mention that the hormone is also responsible for pretty much all of your muscle. When the levels of testosterone go down, even the cardiovascular system gets affected.

When we talk about what we consume, it is essential to mention alcohol and drug abuse. The party life is very addictive, so young people are drinking more alcohol. Then there is the urge to get experimental and try to conform, so many find themselves trying all kinds of drugs, which can potentially lead to mental illness and consequently affect one’s sex life too. Even cigarettes have detrimental effects on erection health. With time, your blood vessels will start narrowing, which, in addition to more generalized health problems, results in compromised circulation in the pelvic area. Systemic conditions like hypertension also predispose you to erectile dysfunction.

Psychological Causes

One of the major causes of erectile problems is stress. Many studies have pointed at this rather than physical causes, especially in the younger populations. People in their 30s and 40s are mainly attributing their stress to problems at work or the pressure of various societal expectations. As the result, we are getting a bunch of young men who are burdened and troubled by all sorts of things.

When you are in a stressful state, the body reacts by releasing hormones to help you cope. You have definitely heard about the fight and flight hormones (some writers also add fright to the list). These are adrenaline and cortisol which are meant to get you through trouble by raising glucose levels in the body and redirecting blood flow. Your blood vessels are constricted in the process and this gets very unhealthy in the long run when it becomes the constant state that you are in. It means you are always preparing for combat. We bet you realize that erections don’t happen in such environments – you can only have sex when you are relaxed. Erection results from dilation of blood vessels, followed by increased flow of blood into the penile tissue. This simply would not happen if the blood vessels were constricted. Sex has a significant psychological component and it won’t go down well unless a conductive environment is cultivated.

Another study found that most of the young people who were suffering from ED were also anxious or depressed. Anxiety and depression are key ingredients in the recipe for trouble. Someone who is depressed loses interest in most things. They find it hard to get pleasure. They are in a state referred to as anhedonia. When this happens, the individual will find it hard to have sexual intercourse. Another factor that might further worsen the problem is the use of medications. Antidepressants can cause low sex drive and hence create more problems in the bedroom.

A stressed and depressed person doesn’t get enough sleep and this makes the whole thing even worse. You need to sleep well in order to relax and reestablish the balance between testosterone and cortisol.

The Technology

Technology has been impactful in many ways. We have embraced it because it has made our lives easier. Unfortunately, it also has a number of negative effects. We can attribute erectile dysfunction to technology in many cases.

First of all, think about the current obsession with smartphones. We are all addicted to our phones. It’s the one thing you want to walk around with, sleep next to and even have in the bathroom. And it is not just the adults’ problem – the kids are consumed by their gadgets as well. You walk into the living room and everyone there is on the phone. No conversation going on. It is a sad state of affairs.

The phone manufacturers aren’t helping with the situation. They’ve made the device the all-in-one gadget that can be used for office work, gaming, watching videos and everything else you can think of. They’ve totally succeeded in making us addicted. We spend too much time on these devices and the day ends when we haven’t engaged in other meaningful activities. Perhaps it would be healthier to keep away the phone and sacrifice those memes for some wonderful time by the fireplace. Just relax and try to bring back the natural aspects of life.

Technology has turned people into really lazy creatures. Instead of walking to the post, all you have to do is press the button and send that email. You don’t have to walk to your neighbor’s house. You can simply make a call and inform them about your upcoming birthday party. Young people are leading sedentary lifestyles where they don’t exercise at all. It’s from the couch to the bed, to the car and back to the couch. And then COVID-19 hit and stopped us from leaving our houses, even for a short trip to the office. People aren’t engaging in even the tiniest amount of physical activity. Exercising helps you to lose fat, facilitate metabolic processes, and maintain good muscle bulk. In the end, you are rewarded with balanced hormone levels and an overall sense of wellbeing. With the good body shape, you have boosted self-esteem and you will have more sex drive. When you couple exercise with an excellent diet, the results are outstanding.

Pornography is also one of the things that has been fanned by technology and it is affecting many young people. People start watching porn in the teenage years and it becomes worse with time. There are many people addicted to porn. Their bodies are conditioned and they cannot get enough arousal from a real human partner. To them, the natural act of sex doesn’t make a lot of sense because they are used to the stuff taking place on the screen. Psychosexual experts take different approaches to tackle this problem and they are the best people to see if you think you are having erection problems because of porn.

Chronic Conditions

It is not uncommon to find young people suffering from chronic conditions such as hypertension and diabetes mellitus. These conditions and many more can affect an individual’s sex life. Hypertension and atherosclerosis cause damage to the blood vessels and impair blood circulation. The predisposing factors to the early development of such conditions could be genetic or environmental. Sometimes, it is a combination of the two.

It is important to point out that young men must not be in too much hurry to start using the drugs that enhance sexual performance. Make sure you get the doctor’s permission before you use Viagra, Cialis and the like and only do so when it is necessary. These meds can cause dependence. You may also develop tolerance to them causing the need to increase the dosage over time. In the end, the drugs might stop working at all.

More young men are having erection problems but the good news is that most of the causes of this condition can be prevented or treated. It all starts with valuing our bodies and doing everything possible to keep them healthy.

author: Dr. Marian Davis

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