Erectile dysfunction (ED) is a common health condition that affects nearly 1 in every 5 men globally. Both psychological and physical factors cause ED. However, due to environmental and emotional causes, ED is short-lived and can be cured with proper care and support.Learn to manage your stress and overcome your anxiety at health2delivery. It is an authentic online platform with multiple mental health experts at your service 24/7. You can book an appointment, get the necessary care and support, and learn more about your condition from the comfort of your home. Easy access to professional treatment will ensure your fast recovery and progress.
Can environmental factors contribute to erectile dysfunction?
Yes, they can. Your environment determines your circumstances, which in turn determines your mental and physical health. One of the leading causes of ED in men of all ages is stress and anxiety. Stress caused by peer pressure, health issues, financial problems, loneliness, and relationship struggles can induce erectile dysfunction. Moreover, physical factors like pollution, climate change, sedentary lifestyle, and a poor diet cause health disorders, including erectile dysfunction.
Following are the 5 most common environmental factors known to cause ED:
1. Environmental stress and anxiety
Stress and anxiety caused by various life experiences can trigger erectile dysfunction. Studies show that men of all ages may encounter stress-induced erectile dysfunction in some shape or form. Men under 30 years experience ED primarily due to anxiety and nervousness. This form of ED is temporary and usually gets cured after some time. Men ranging from 30 to 50 years typically have ED due to professional and personal stress. This form of stress and anxiety originates from a stressful working environment and distressing life incidents, respectively. Older males in their 50s or above struggle with ED due to aging. But factors like loneliness, retirement, or losing a loved one can be driving factors in causing stress-induced ED.
When you’re anxious or stressed, it affects your brain chemistry and causes a hormonal imbalance. Your body starts producing more cortisol (primary stress hormone) while lowering testosterone levels simultaneously. Testosterone is the male hormone responsible for your sex drive.
Your circumstances determine your stress and anxiety levels. Conditions like having an exam, project deadlines, presentations, becoming a father, or other relationship struggles can temporarily increase your anxiety and stress. However, long-term stress and anxiety can be caused by health problems, financial issues, social pressures, and PTSD.
Environmental pollution and climate change cause health problems, including ED. Numerous scientific pieces of evidence now support the idea that breathing toxic air and consuming processed food may be one of the reasons for ED. Clinical and biomedical researches show that many environmental toxicants, including lead, cadmium, mercury, pesticides, insecticides, and organic solvents, are potential hazards to a human physical, nervous, and sexual health. When ingested, these toxic agents can cause serious damage to your brain and body over time. They alter your brain’s chemistry, resulting in low dopamine and testosterone levels and an increase in cortisol. This imbalance also leads to mental illnesses, including depression and anxiety disorders.
3. Lack of exercise
A sedentary lifestyle with little to no physical activity has adverse effects on your body. Exercise improves your blood circulation and energy regulation, which you need for healthy sex life.
Working out does not only keeps your body fit, but it also improves your brain function and focus. Without an active lifestyle, you are likely to become depressed and lonely, which may result in adopting unhealthy habits, including excessive smoking, alcohol addiction, drug abuse, watching pornography, and social isolation. Depression and poor mental health caused by inactivity can also lead to eating disorders such as overeating, binge eating, and anorexia. All these factors are closely linked to each other, and one imbalance in your lifestyle can trigger a chain of negative effects and poor choices.
On the other hand, some physical exercises may cause more damage than being helpful. Riding a bike is one example. Bike riding puts a lot of pressure and body weight on your pelvic region, damaging the blood vessels and nerves in that area. Therefore, reduce your kilometers and add a suitable workout regime to improve your ED symptoms. You can consult your doctor in this case.
4. Unhealthy diet
You are what you eat. Your diet determines your health status. If you are fond of junk food and consume it daily, whether it’s fast food, highly processed food products, and pre-packaged meals and snacks, you should rethink your food choices because they may be the reason for your ED. Such food contains high amounts of sodium, sugars, trans-fats, and artificial preservatives. Consuming unhealthy foods daily can cause chronic health problems like obesity, high blood pressure, hyperlipidemia (high cholesterol), and diabetes. All these health issues are known to be a contributing cause of ED.
5. Substance abuse
Specific life incidents often lead people to develop substance dependence. However, this is also a choice that only results in more damage and deterioration. Consuming too much alcohol, drug addiction, pornography addiction, and excessive smoking are habits that have disastrous health effects on your mind and body. Out of the several health issues linked to substance abuse, erectile dysfunction is one too.
Therefore, the best way to tackle your ED symptoms is getting help from a licensed therapist or, if needed, going to a rehabilitation center.