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AFAF Erectile Dysfunction

Asking 4 A Friend: ‘Why won’t my dick stay hard?’


TextDouglas GreenwoodIllustrationCallum Abbott

Around 52 per cent of men are allegedly suffering (mostly in silence), here’s what to do if you’re one of them

Asking 4 A Friend is a column investigating all of those embarrassing situations you (sorry, your ‘friend’) is too scared to ask about. Do you sweat excessively? Have terrible bad breath? Whatever your problem is, we’ve got you covered. 

In a man’s imagination, he is a Trojan horse pushing forth in the bedroom; all-conquering, stiff and stoic. Nothing can stop him. He’s desirable, perfect and rock hard. That is, unless, he’s part of the rumoured 52 per cent of men who suffer from some form of Erectile Dysfunction. 

The mere mention of it makes you wince, reminding you of those high school days when the only thing worse than being labelled a virgin by your mates was the swirling rumours that your chance encounter with so-and-so, your “big moment” so to speak, was hampered by the fact your willy couldn’t quite get – or stay – erect. 

Perhaps the reason it’s something young men don’t speak about so often is because it’s seen as an old dude’s thing. That is, in part, true. A 2018 study conducted by the Cleveland Clinic (of which just over half of those surveyed suffered from ED) showed that 70 per cent of men aged 70 had experienced erectile dysfunction. It tends to increase in 10 per cent increments depending on age (20 per cent of 20 year olds, 30 per cent of 30 year olds, etc...) but is still, regardless, a far more common issue than those who deal with it might realise. 

Why? Mostly because it’s a debilitating condition that has a dozen different sources, some medical, many psychological. The most common ones correlate with old age; those who suffer from atherosclerosis (that’s a build-up of fat in the blood cells) or diabetes are often ED sufferers too. Any disease that affects blood flow, obviously, is directly linked to the one thing that helps get your dick hard. For most people who are aware of their medical history, it can be easy to put two and two together, but if you’re struggling to make sense of it, it’s worth heading down to your local GP and asking them the cold, hard questions about what could be causing the problem.

The vast majority of causes of ED are psychological. If you’re stressing about work, experience high levels of anxiety, feel guilty that you’re not satisfying your partner, have low self-esteem, or suffer from depression, these all act as curveballs when it comes to getting and staying erect, either during masturbation or sex. The saying ‘think with your dick’ harbours a whole new meaning when you realise the two are inherently interlinked.

The answers to the issue vary, from psychotherapy to medical techniques like an injection of platelet-rich plasma, known as PRP. Injected into the shaft, it’s meant to stimulate the cells, collagen and blood vessels around the penis to make blood flow faster, and more efficiently, through it. Dr Sherif Wakal was the first clinician to bring the procedure to the UK and Europe in 2014. Since then, he’s created a sort of glam, floppy cock-tail of treatments that he’s called the O Concept. On top of the PRP shot, it involves Vigore (which sounds on paper like a penis massage, which sounds a lot like a wank), a specialised diet plan and a customised coterie of supplements which vary from person to person, designed to keep you a man on the stiff – I mean, straight and narrow.

“The vast majority of causes of ED are psychological. If you’re stressing about work, experience high levels of anxiety, feel guilty that you’re not satisfying your partner, have low self-esteem or suffer from depression, these all act as curveballs when it comes to getting and staying erect, either during masturbation or sex”

“(The) majority of men are still shy to come forward and seek help,” Dr Sherif tells Dazed Beauty. “I always explain to the patient the motto of the O Concept™: maintain the penis’s health and ability just like maintaining any other organ in their bodies, as what I always see is the fact that men live their entire lives not looking after their penis once.” It raises an interesting point. We go to the gym and work on our hearts and lungs and other muscles, but just let our dicks hang there without considering the possibility of TLC beyond some hanky panky every so often. “This is precisely what the O Concept™ protocol presents,” he adds. “An MOT for the penis to stay as healthy as possible.”

It’s worth mentioning that, should you not have the cash to fork out money for treatments like Dr Sherif’s, there are a few things you should take a stab at. Exercising regularly and cutting out bad, fatty foods in your diet help your heart stay healthy which, in turn, can help increase blood flow to the penis. Take a trip to Holland & Barrett (other health food stores are available) and seek out the appropriately named horny goat weed. It contains icariin, a substance that helps inhibit the chemical PDE5; a common source of impotence. Getting sunshine and eating avocados helps too; Vitamin D and B3 are great in moderation for vascular conditions.

Alternatively, the good old blue pill Viagra no longer requires a prescription, so if that feels like your most reliable option, you can now buy it, legally and safely, online

So there you have it. If you’re still struggling to keep it up – don’t be so hard on yourself. There are plenty of ways to turn your floppy member into a fully fledged fuck toy. 

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