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Alcohol and Erectile Dysfunction

Alcohol and the modern society go hand in hand. Since ages people have been consuming alcohol. Some in moderate quantity while, some a little more than that. The things that changed over the era are the perception and position of alcohol. Going a little back in time, during the prohibition’s era, alcohol was not considered a healthy thing to take. It was known as the “devil in liquid state”. Time changed and the perception too, changed. The modern studies say that taking alcohol in moderate amount can be good for overall health.

As far as alcohol and sexual health is concerned, there is a mystery surrounding the effect that alcohol has on the sexual health. There are several questions that revolve the effect of alcohol on libido as well as climax scenarios. Several studies were carried out to rule out the connection between alcohol and erectile dysfunction.

Alcohol and Erectile Dysfunction

Erectile dysfunction is the commonest form of sexual dysfunction prevailing among the men in United States of America. If numbers are to be believed, around 300,000 cases of erectile dysfunction are diagnosed each year. There are many other cases that stay unregistered and unreported.

To rule out the connection between erectile dysfunction and alcohol, it is important to understand the process involved in attaining an erection. Here is the physiology of penile erection:

When a man feels a physical (touch) as well as sensory perception, the brain gets stimulated. The brain signals the muscles of penis to achieve a relaxed state. When the penis relaxes, the blood flow in the penis enhances. The blood exerts a pressure on the walls of penis from inside and hence, the penis starts to expand. This causes an erection gradually. The erection sustain only when the muscles of penis are strong enough to hold blood for a significant period of time.

This derives a conclusion that, the erection is largely dependent on the flow of blood in the penis. This is a big reason behind the occurrence of erectile dysfunctions in certain health conditions like diabetes and arteriosclerosis. In the conditions like diabetes and arteriosclerosis, the blood vessels get hardened causing the pressure of blood flow drop down leading to erectile dysfunction.

Alcohol increases the volume of blood which leads to a hype in blood pressure. This state remains till all the excessive liquid stays in the blood. When the liquid is removed from the blood via urine, the pressure too, drops. Thus, this leads to a conclusion that alcohol consumption helps in sustaining erection and does not lead to erectile dysfunction. Another noted fact about alcohol is that it acts as a sedative. So, it helps in relieving the performance anxiety which is also a cause of erectile dysfunction especially in younger men. Studies say that a man who is drunk has a better sex. But, having alcohol is not the solution to erectile dysfunction. Other forms of intoxication like smoking and drug abuse, on the other hand, make up the reason for one- fourth of all the erectile dysfunction cases.