Erectile Dysfunction | Depression
Are you aware that
– The lifetime prevalence of certain psychological disorders such as major depression disorder is 12.7% (1)
– The prevalence of mild depression disorders is even higher (approximately 50 to 70%); however, most cases remain concealed (1)
Erectile Dysfunction and Depression – Relation
Major depression is a recognized risk factor in the setting of decreased interest in sexual activities and/ or sexual dysfunction. According to the data published in peer reviewed Journal of Affective Disorders (2)
– 40% males report a substantial decrease in interest to engage in sexual practices
– 20 – 35% males report difficulty in achieving orgasm (Male Orgasm Learn More)
– 75 to 85% experience erectile dysfunction (ED Screening Learn More) (an inability to achieve full erection upon adequate sexual stimulation).
Unfortunately, like most mental health issues, depression is a two-edged sword. According to a study, 43.3% males who consume anti-depressants for the management of clinical depression also develop some degree of erectile dysfunction (ED Treatment Learn More).
Other complications of antidepressants are, painful orgasm, inability to reach a climax (Bigger Orgasm Learn More) and low libido (Libido Control Learn More). About 18% males who consume anti-depressants experience at least one episode of painful orgasm; however, the risk of developing painful orgasm is also dependent on other factors; such as choice of anti-depressant, concurrent medical conditions and use of other pharmacological preparations.
Management of Erectile Dysfunction With Major Depression
Various treatment and management modalities are in practice to manage ED in the setting of clinical depression; such as
– If you are experiencing erectile dysfunction (ED Causes Learn More) after initiating an anti-depressant, speak to your healthcare professional for a revised prescription (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors or SSRI are frequently associated with erectile dysfunction).
– According to the results of a clinical trial published in Journal of Clinical Psychiatry (3), intake of bupropion improved sexual dysfunction (ED Dysfunction Learn More) (erectile disorders, issues in achieving orgasm and loss of libido) in 66% patients who were receiving SSRI therapy.
– Over the counter Phosphodiesterase type 5 are generally safe in patients with depression; however, it is recommended to discuss with your healthcare professional before initiating any additional therapy (4)
Most individuals with erectile dysfunction have stress (ED & Stress Learn More) related issues that manifest as erectile dysfunction. To help reduce the stress and anxiety (ED & Anxiety Learn More) associated with erectile dysfunction, certain relaxing exercises are suggested; these do not need assistance from a second person and are also effective with positive results. These exercises are as follows.
– Music therapy: listening to music is advised as a helpful strategy to minimize the disturbing effects of depression.
– Muscle relaxation Exercises
Seeking Professional Help
It is always desirable to discuss other options with your healthcare professional in order to minimize the risk of complications. A psychotherapist is someone who focuses on psychological issues regarding a disorder and use both psychology and therapeutics to treat the problem. Erectile dysfunction is one such problem which has its roots set in mental stress and depression and therefore a psychotherapist may also prove helpful in the management protocol in addition to drugs (ED & Drugs Learn More).
Kennedy, S. H., Dickens, S. E., Eisfeld, B. S., & Bagby, R. M. (1999). Sexual dysfunction before antidepressant therapy in major depression. Journal of Affective Disorders, 56(2), 201-208.
Balon, R., Yeragani, V. K., Pohl, R., & Ramesh, C. (1993). Sexual dysfunction during antidepressant treatment. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry.
Ashton, A. K., & Rosen, R. C. (1998). Bupropion as an antidote for serotonin reuptake inhibitor-induced sexual dysfunction. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry.
Kennedy, S. H., Dugré, H., & Defoy, I. (2011). A multicenter, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of sildenafil citrate in Canadian men with erectile dysfunction and untreated symptoms of depression, in the absence of major depressive disorder. International clinical psychopharmacology
When to Seek Medical Advice for ED?
IF ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION LASTS LONGER THAN 2 MONTHS OR IS A RECURRING PROBLEM, SEE YOUR DOCTOR FOR A PHYSICAL EXAM OR FOR A REFERRAL TO A DOCTOR WHO SPECIALIZES IN ERECTILE PROBLEMS. YOUR OWN DOCTOR OR A SPECIALIST CAN HELP TO DETERMINE THE UNDERLYING CAUSE OR CAUSES OF ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION AND GUIDE YOU TOWARDS FINDING THE RIGHT TYPE OF TREATMENT.
Although you might view erectile dysfunction as a personal or embarrassing problem, it’s important to seek treatment, especially if a physical cause might be developing. In many cases, erectile dysfunction can be successfully treated. Also, see your doctor if the therapy or medication prescribed to treat erectile dysfunction isn’t working for you. Don’t try to combine medications or therapies on your own or deviate from prescribed doses and do not your symptoms as they could be one of Erectile Dysfunction Causes.