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Are you embarrassed to talk about sex?

Sexual problems are common among men and women. Erectile dysfunction (ED) with men – the inability to get an erection or to sustain an erection for satisfying sex – happens regularly.

In a study with men between the ages of 35 to 75 years, that regularly visit clinics in the Western Cape, found that 7 out of 10 already experienced erectile dysfunction to a certain degree! It can however be a huge over estimation of men who need treatment; it does however indicate that most men will in some part of their lives experience some degree of erectile dysfunction.

ED that needs treatment is more common in older men. There are studies that indicate that 1 out of every 20 men over the age of 40, and 1 out of every 7 over the age of 70 won’t be able to get an erection at all, or won’t be able to maintain it.

There are several reasons for ED, and even though it’s a physical problem with most men, it can with some be anxiety for sexual success, depression, a low self esteem and other psychological conditions, also the inability to satisfy himself or his partner. It’s common that the partner also feels responsible for the ED and struggles with the following questions: Am I no longer attractive to him? Is it my fault that he does not want to have sex with me anymore?

The frustration and lack of communication between the two parties can have a negative effect on the relationship.

Communication’s the key to solving the problems in all aspects of life and relationships. When you talk to your partner about your feelings and your problems with sex, it helps him/her to understand how you feel, what you are experiencing, and it opens the door for you to get help together.

You can also feel anxious to talk to your doctor about this, but it’s not necessary to feel like this. Remember sexual problems are very common – you’ll not be the first or last person to talk to your doctor about the topic. Because your doctor is trained and professional, he/she will be comfortable to talk to you about this, take the lead in the discussion, and make a diagnosis and to suggest treatment.

Many of us feel uncomfortable to talk about these personal details. Your relationship’s more important to you and your partner cares for you. Open communication means that you don’t have to live with the discomfort and anxiety that goes hand in hand with sexual problems and that erectile dysfunction’s not a forbidden topic.