Doctor and leading ED expert warns of danger of porn addiction

Doctor and leading ED expert warns of danger of porn addiction

Article in partnership with MOSH.

Aussies watch a lot of porn!

According to Porn Hub's rankers, Australians are the seventh most frequent visitors to the site, despite the fact we have a relatively small population.

Yes, it doesn't seem to matter if you're a big burly roustabout from Bourke or a sensitive inner city male feminist type, the one thing Aussie men have in common is they enjoy spending "quality time" with themselves.

However, this isn't without some level of risk, Dr Chris Love warns, saying that over indulgence in porn can lead to Erectile Dysfunction (ED).

Dr Love - yes, that's his real name - is one of nation's leading experts on the topic. As a urologist, he is the largest volume penial implant surgeon in Australia.

He is also an advisor for online men's health platform MOSH, which gives blokes easy and discreet access to qualified doctors who can help them with their issue.

While Dr Love says it is not yet known how over consumption of porn affects the ability to maintain an erection - at least not medically - it is definitely a trend that has been observed.

"We think it is probably due to two aspects: the first one is that men (who watch too much porn) develop unrealistic expectations about what their penis should look like and how long they should be able to last in bed and all of that type of stuff," Dr Love explained.

"They compare themselves unfairly to what they see in pornography and then get anxious about it. But, over and above that, we think the brain can actually get desensitized to sexual things," he continued.

Just like with drugs and alcohol, Dr Love says, it may well be the case that if someone over simulates the parts of their brain that seek sexual gratification, they may build up a tolerance to it. Thus becoming less stimulated over time by their own sexual activities.

ED is a serious issue amongst men. In fact, approximately 40pc of men are affected by the age of 40 and nearly 70pc of men are affected by the age of 70.

However, complaints of ED are becoming more and more common in younger men too, with one in four new ED patients now under 40.

It is estimated that up to 150 million men worldwide suffer from ED, with number expected to double by 2025!

So, what exactly is ED and what causes it?

Put simply, ED is a vascular issue caused by a restriction of blood flow to the penis, making it difficult to get or maintain an erection, Dr Love says.

It's causes vary from patient to patient but it tends to have two strong factors: psychology and physiology.

"With younger men it tends to be more psychological," Dr Love explained.

"Young guys can get a bit anxious about their erections... they can be worried about the size of it or if it's a new relationship and they want to impress their partner."

This can cause their brain to release anxiety chemicals or stress hormones, which can close down small blood vessels, making it difficult to get an erection.

"In older men, it is more likely to be a physical issue," Dr Love continued.

"As we get older we get vascular disease or what we used to call hardening of the arteries... but it also happens when you have underlying health conditions like diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, any of those types of things," he said.

Again, this can cause blockages or restriction of blood flow to the penis, thus making it difficult to get an erection.

Other major risk factors include smoking, obesity, excessive drug and alcohol consumption, lack of physical exercise, stress and cultural issues around sex.

Dr Love says anxieties are especially common in younger men who come from conservative cultural backgrounds where there is often a lot of shame associated with masturbation and early sexual development.

So what can be done about it?

Luckily, Dr Love says, there are a multitude of options available for sufferers of ED, ranging from oral drugs like viagra - which help to open the blood vessels in the penis - through to more serious medical procedures.

In men with anxiety, talk therapy can also be an important step to help address the underlying issues.

Regardless of the cause of your ED, Dr Love says, it is important to seek medical advice. There is no need for men to feel embarrassed about it or to feel emasculated. Most importantly, he says, they shouldn't try to hide it because ED can be an early indicator of more serious heart conditions.

That's why he is such a big supporter of the MOSH platform. This men's online health platform gives men easy access to qualified doctors and clinical treatments, and it allows them to do it discreetly (even over text) at a time that suits them.

Finally, Dr Love said it was important for all men to take preventative measures to help stave off ED, these include not smoking, avoiding unnecessary stress, and maintaining an active healthy lifestyle.

"The vascular system is the same all throughout the body," Dr Love said.

"The blood vessels that take blood to your heart and brain and penis are all the same and they all get affected by the same underlying conditions," he went on.

"So, all the stuff we recommend for a healthy heart is exactly the same for a healthy penis."

For more information visit: https://www.getmosh.com.au/

Article in partnership with MOSH.

This story Doctor and leading ED expert warns of danger of porn addiction first appeared on The Canberra Times.