The negative side effects of mixing excessive alcohol consumption and sexual activity has been well documented. Men who deal with erectile dysfunction should be aware of factors and habits that could be increasing their likelihood of experiencing erectile dysfunction. Even small lifestyle changes can result in significant improvements in sexual health.
The Short Term Side Effects
Moderate or low-level consumption of alcohol can be helpful in soothing anxieties and similar mental hang ups, but there is a threshold. When the average drinker consumes one drink too many a phenomenon colloquially known as “brewer’s droop” can occur.
Indulging in heavy drinking can impede sexual performance and enjoyment in the short term. Drinking alcohol can reduce the flow of blood to the penis, inhibiting the achievement and sustainment of an erection.
The Long Term Side Effects
Clinical research has indicated that chronic alcohol abuse can lead to alcohol-induced erectile dysfunction. Long term excessive drinking is associated with permanent impairment to the nervous system that hinders the responses between the pituitary gland and the sex organs.
When arousal occurs, the brain sends a message to the blood vessels in the penis to relax allowing more blood to flow in. The end result is an erection. Alcohol hinders this process in the short term, and in the long term is can result in permanent nerve damage.
Alcohol and Hormonal Changes
Alcohol has been linked to hormonal changes too. Testosterone levels are often lower in heavy drinkers and alcoholics. Lowered testosterone levels can lead to a lower sex drive and a diminished ability to carry out desired sexual activities.
Sober Erectile Dysfunction
What may come as surprise to many alcoholics and heavy drinkers is that long term excessive drinking can actually lead to a higher chance of experiencing erectile dysfunction even during sober sex.
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