Understanding Performance Anxiety Erectile Dysfunction.
Performance anxiety is the commonest cause of erectile dysfunction in young men. This applies across all cultures, socio-economic groups and educational levels reached. It is a universal fact. And still it remains poorly understood. Most men, on being told that their problem is performance anxiety, want to reject such a suggestion and want you the doctor to come up with an alternative diagnosis. Sometime even the consultation can end in conflict.
In order to become sexually aroused a man’s subconscious brain needs to send a message to his penis. This signal is to ask the penis to fill with blood and get ready for action. If in the meantime the man’s mind is entertaining negative thoughts, however slight or niggling, about the state of his penis, then these subconscious messages are blocked and no erection results. For the system to work there must be no negative thoughts whatsoever. Only desire and relaxed pleasure work.
When a doctor tries to explain this to a man the patient’s immediate reaction often is to reject any such suggestion. He does this because he makes the following incorrect assumptions:
• Performance anxiety is the man’s own fault. That is not correct.
• Performance anxiety is difficult to treat. That is not correct.
• Performance anxiety is a sign of weakness and only affects wimps. That is not correct.
What young men often do not seem to understand is that all other causes of erectile dysfunction, in their age group, are relatively rare. These would include things like venous leek -- extremely rare in my experience. Indeed I have never seen a case in all my years of medical practise. Diabetes – very easy to rule in or to rule out. Medications or drug abuse – again easy to exclude. Neurological diseases or other chronic illness. Again this should be blindingly obvious as a cause of ED. In short, nine times out of ten, performance anxiety is the candidate of first choice but is often the one that is most difficult to sell.
Doctors or counsellors who would assume to treat sexual dysfunction in younger men need to be very aware of how the notion of performance anxiety can often be met with hostility. Often indeed it is necessary to come at this diagnosis via a circuitous rout. It is often wise to list all possible causes and to rule them out one by one such that the client is left with on reasonable alternative explanation for his problem other that to accept the cause as being our old friend, performance anxiety. Because until such time as this acceptance begins to dawn on him, there can not be any cure.
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