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Headaches, Biking, Snoring, and Other Surprising Causes of ED


Some of the causes seem unrelated, until you give them a closer look.

Even though it’s common, many men avoid seeking out solutions for erectile dysfunction (ED) because men are less likely to discuss health conditions. In other words, men might handle ED better if they were women. Let that sink in a minute.

While ED is most commonly caused by the aging process, there are other causes. And if you have ED and you do decide to discuss it with a medical professional, he or she will likely ask you about your exercise regimen and even your alcohol intake. Relax – they’re not casting aspersions on your lifestyle. They’re ruling out causes that are non-age-related. And here are a few things you might not think about that can contribute to ED:

It could be your snoring

You’re asleep so you don’t notice it (unless it’s so loud it wakes you up), but your snoring is doing more than causing a poor night’s sleep for your spouse or partner. Constant snoring is often a sign of sleep apnea. It’s a disorder that causes you to stop breathing for up to 30 seconds.

Sleep apnea lowers the oxygen level in your blood, impairing your body’s overall functionality. A common side-effect is ED. The Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine reports that 69% of Americans suffering from sleep apnea also experience reduced sexual desire and 46% reported reduced arousal.

It could be your bicycle seat

Or your spin class, or even your horseback riding. These activities have been linked to ED. The hard and narrow seat of a bicycle can desensitize and even damage the blood vessels and nerves in your pelvic floor, if you ride on a regular basis. This damage can contribute to ED.

It could be your, um, viewing habits

Too much porn is bad for you—but maybe not in the way you might think. Excessive viewing of pornography could cause psychological issues. Growing research suggests that you can reach the point where you can’t get aroused unless you find yourself in a situation like the porn you watch—and we all know that most porn is not based in reality.

It could be your migraine headaches

major study in Asia found that men who experienced migraine headaches were far more likely to also experience ED. It worked in the other direction too. The study revealed that men aged 30 to 39 with ED were twice as likely to suffer from migraines.

It’s not difficult to draw a connection between these two. Stress causes migraines, as well as ED. And circulatory problems cause both ED and certain migraine headaches.

It could be your brushing and flossing habits

Poor dental hygiene doesn’t just impact your teeth and gums, it can also be an obstacle to healthy erections. Researchers in Israel found that more than 15% of the men in an ED study also had periodontitis, an advanced form of gum disease. They found that only 2% of those in the study without periodontitis experienced ED.

Oral inflammation caused by issues such as periodontitis is known to decrease an enzyme called eNOS. This enzyme produces the nitric acid your body uses to regulate blood flow. Inadequate blood flow is the main reason for ED. Poor oral hygiene also has been linked to cardiac disease.

These things seem unrelated until you start giving them a closer look. Then you discover that basically anything impacting blood flow—even in other parts of the body—can influence ED. Solve the blood flow issues and you go a long way toward getting rid of ED.

The common approach to erectile dysfunction has been medication, but there are other alternatives. One is a non-medication treatment using sound therapy to regenerate new blood vessels and increase blood flow. It’s known as Low-intensity Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy (Li-ESWT).

The procedure is performed during an office visit in about a dozen sessions of less than 30 minutes, using an FDA-cleared device. The approach has been made popular in the US by the GAINSWave® therapy protocol. More than 40 clinical studies have shown that the therapy is effective at addressing ED, and it is also beneficial for men who aren’t yet experiencing ED.

For more information on GAINSWave®, connect with us online today.