OTC ED

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Over the Counter Treatments for Erectile Dysfunction

After many years of tightly-regulated use and research, doctors and pharmacists have agreed that certain treatments for erectile dysfunction can be solf over the counter without a prescription.

Viagra Connect is a 50mg dose of Viagra. Taken one hour before sex, Viagra Connect will help you achieve and maintain an erection by allowing more blood to flow into the penis.

Cialis Together is a 10mg of Cialis. Like Viagra, Cialis helps you get an erection by increasing bloodflow; unlike VIagra, Cialis stays in your system for up to 36 hours. This gives it the nickname "The Weekender", as one pill can give you multiple uses!

OTC ED

OTC ED treatment options

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Overview

What is Erectile Dysfunction (ED)?

Erectile dysfunction (ED) is the inability for a man to gain or maintain an erection hard or long enough to achieve satisfactory sex. 

Failure to gain and maintain an erection for men with ED is incredibly distressing. For men who suffer from this condition, maintaining a healthy sexual relationship can be incredibly challenging and stressful.

Studies suggest that over 50% of men will experience erection problems in their lifetime. While it’s true this usually occurs later in life, ED is said to affect 1 in 4 men under 40 in some way.

Identifying the cause of your ED and addressing the problem is incredibly important. Addressing underlying causes to naturally resolve your ED is ideal. However, in situations where the underlying cause can not be addressed, there are a number of treatment options available for men to overcome this distressing condition.

Causes of Erectile Dysfunction

To gain and maintain an erection blow must flow into the penis through a relaxed blood vessel, then stay there by the closing of the blood vessel. When sexual arousal goes away, the vessel opens allowing blood to leave, softening the penis.

There can be a number of causes of erectile dysfunction. These can be split into two major categories: Physical and Psychological.

Physical Causes of ED

  • Narrowing Blood Vessels
  • Health conditions such as high blood pressure, cholesterol, heart disease and diabetes can all lead to narrowed blood vessels. ED may be the first indication of one of these underlying conditions, this is why we encourage you to talk to your doctor for a full checkup-up with blood tests for all men, especially if you are over 40.

Lifestyle Factors

  • A poor diet, lack of fitness, excessive alcohol consumption, and smoking are all risk factors for acquiring ED. If these apply to you, addressing them may improve your ED, possibly even cure it.

Age

Unfortunately, it is true that age can contribute to ED. As men get older risk factors for conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, low testosterone and others can all begin to play a role in erectile function.

Medicines

Taking medicines that cause changes to blood flow around the body or have side effects which change blood flow or libido can result in ED. Treatments for depression, blood pressure, and hair loss are examples of drugs that may be causing your ED. Do not stop prescribed treatments without consulting your doctor about your treatment options.

Psychological Causes of ED

Depression and Anxiety

ED is more prevalent in men who are suffering from depression. If you feel like you might be depressed you should speak to your doctor about your symptoms. Mental health can greatly affect your ability to get an erection and the underlying depression may need to be treated to improve ED. 

Stress and anxiety, even in the short term, can result in ED. With the rising number of men developing anxiety for various working and social reasons, anxiety-related ED has become common. Erectile dysfunction relating to anxiety should resolve once the anxiety has. If you suffer from long term anxiety conditions, counselling and treatment may be needed to overcome ED.

Erectile Dysfunction Treatments

A common question among men with newly presenting ED is, is there a cure for erectile dysfunction? Well, yes and no - many men can “cure” their ED by addressing the main causes behind it. But, for those men who can’t manage the underlying cause or for those who need help while they work on it, there are four ways to treat ED.

Erectile Dysfunction Tablets

The first-line treatments for erectile problems are tablets from the drug class PDE-5 inhibitors. These include:

These ED treatments work by increasing the blood flow to the penis. While this significantly improves the ability to gain and maintain an erection, you still require arousal to gain an erection.

Side effects for these treatments of ED tend to be related to their effect on blood vessels. For this reason, they may not be suitable for patients with low blood pressure and heart conditions. Side effects can include dizziness and headaches. 

Injectable and Inserted Drugs for ED

Caverject (Alprostadil) is a drug made by the same company that came up with the original ED treatment, Viagra. Caverject is an injection into the penis. For obvious reasons, this is not the most popular option due to peoples general discomfort around injections, however, it is proven to work significantly faster than the tablet options, only taking around 5-15 minutes to work.

Penis Vacuum Pump Devices

Another alternative to using medication are penis pumps. These can be a little intimidating to use, however they do produce results. For men who are unable to get an erection, a penis pump can be an incredibly effective solution. 

They work by creating a vacuum around the penis. This vacuum effect then encourages blood flow into the penis and results in an erection. 

Once erect, a ring can be used at the base of the penis to help maintain the erection. Satisfaction with the results vary. Studies show between 50-80% of men are happy with the outcome of using this type of device.

Penile Implants

A penile implant is a device that is surgically placed into the genitals that can be semi-rigid or adjustable for hardening. These devices are quite invasive and are only used in patients who cannot use other treatments, leaving them as the only option for treating erectile dysfunction.

Lifestyle Changes to Improve Erectile Dysfunction

The best treatments for erectile dysfunction are not always drugs, lifestyle changes can sometimes yield the best results. While some may be hard to implement, making them can sometimes have a profound effect on your sex life. Factors that can affect erectile dysfunction include alcohol, smoking, weight and stress. Addressing these factors can not only positively affect your ED issues but also help address other health conditions, such as obesity.

Reducing alcohol and illicit drug intake may positively affect your ability to achieve an erection. Both can interrupt arousal signals from the brain to the body resulting in ED. Talk to your doctor for more ways to decrease consumption of these substances if you believe they may be affecting your sexual health.

Smoking can result in damage to your blood vessels. The resulting poor blood supply to the penis can cause erectile dysfunction. Stopping smoking improves vascular health which often results in improved sexual performance.

Addressing eating habits can also impact your impotence issues. Obese men are approximately 2.5 times more likely to suffer from ED than men who have a normal BMI. Not only will losing weight potentially help your ED, but also reduce your risks of cardiovascular disease.

Pelvic floor exercises, also known as Kegels, result in the strengthening of the muscles around the penis. Strengthening muscles around the penis can improve blood flow which improves erectile function. 

Finally, stress has been shown to also impact a man’s ability to achieve an erection. This can be both general stress levels, and anxiety specifically associated with sexual performance. Addressing your stress levels directly, or with the help of a psychologist, can be massively impactful for both ED and your overall health.

 

Further Reading

Viagra Vs Viagra Connect - What's The Difference?

What is Cialis Together? Over the Counter ED Treatment

The Future of ED Treatments

WSHD 2023 - Non-Medical ED Treatments - Ring, Pump or Natural Remedies?

Can You Take Viagra With Alcohol?

How Does Viagra Work?

Viagra Connect (Sildenafil) 50mg

Medication Simple Online Pharmacy MedExpress
Lloyds
50mg x4 £18.48
£17.99 £19.99
50mg x8 £23.58
£33.99 £34.99
50mg x12 £49.98
£50.99 £51.99
50mg x16 £63.50
£67.99 N/A
50mg x32 £109.95
£139.99 N/A
50mg x2 £8.60

Cialis Together

Medication Simple Online Pharmacy
10mg x4 £20.99
10mg x8 £36.99

Aronix

Medication Simple Online Pharmacy
50mg x4 £12.99
50mg x8 £22.00

OTC ED Treatment Comparison