What is erectile dysfunction? What are the causes of psychological erectile dysfunction?

1.What is erectile dysfunction?

Erectile dysfunction, in a broad sense, refers to a decrease in sexual desire, the inability of the penis to become erect, premature ejaculation, and other sexual dysfunctions collectively known as erectile dysfunction.

In a narrow sense, it specifically refers to the inability of the penis to become erect for sexual intercourse or, even if it does become erect, the inability to maintain sufficient hardness to complete sexual intercourse for a period of over a year. Erectile dysfunction is a complex sexual dysfunction with particularly noticeable overall effects. Normal sexual function also experiences physiological fluctuations. It is considered erectile dysfunction only when repeated failures to achieve sexual intercourse occur under normal sexual stimulation. The incidence of erectile dysfunction is approximately 10% in adult males, and its occurrence often increases with age.

What is erectile dysfunction
What is erectile dysfunction

2.What is erectile dysfunction?

Erectile dysfunction can be classified into two types: primary erectile dysfunction and secondary erectile dysfunction. Primary erectile dysfunction refers to the inability to engage in sexual intercourse, while secondary erectile dysfunction refers to individuals who previously had normal sexual function but later experience difficulties in achieving and maintaining an erection. Occasional and temporary inability to achieve an erection is considered a normal phenomenon. Poor mental state, fatigue, excessive alcohol consumption, intake of certain inhibitory medications, and erectile dysfunction during acute illness cannot be used as diagnostic criteria.

Erectile dysfunction can be classified into two main categories based on its causes: organic and psychological, with psychological factors accounting for over 70% of cases.

The causes of psychological erectile dysfunction are as follows:

  1. Developmental influences: This includes mental trauma related to sexual issues during childhood and improper parental education.
  2. Impact of interpersonal and family relationships: Disharmony in relationships is a significant factor contributing to sexual dysfunction. Many erectile dysfunction patients experience this either as a triggering factor or as the primary cause. Examples include harboring negative emotions or distrust towards a spouse and unresolved family conflicts.
  3. Emotional and cognitive factors: Prolonged emotional suppression, lack of sexual knowledge, and certain iatrogenic influences can all contribute to psychological erectile dysfunction. Iatrogenic influences may arise from doctors’ careless remarks or inadequate explanations, leading to misunderstandings. Additionally, adherence to feudal superstitions, religious constraints, and misconceptions about masturbation as sinful behavior can result in self-blame. Lack of understanding of reproductive physiology, reluctance to seek information due to embarrassment, and overwhelming anxiety can also play a role. These factors often lead to difficulties in sexual life. If met with criticism and neglect from family or society, symptoms of sexual dysfunction worsen, ultimately resulting in erectile dysfunction.

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