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Stress and Anxiety

Mental Health and ED: How Stress and Anxiety Can Impact Sexual Wellness

October 5, 2021 |

If you suffer from erectile dysfunction (ED), it can feel like you’re the only person dealing with it. But ED is much more common than you might think. It affects around 30 million men in the United States alone.

While many men have ED in common, the causes of erectile dysfunction may differ. For some men, ED is caused by natural changes to their hormones as they age. For others, it’s down to an underlying medical condition or a medication they are taking.

But the reasons behind ED aren’t necessarily physiological. Mental health conditionslike anxiety and stresscan also cause ED.

When ED has a psychological cause, you can quickly end up in a vicious cycle. Men with ED tend to have lower self-esteem and get less enjoyment from sex. Lower self-esteem leaves men prone to ongoing anxiety and other mental health problems.

Stress and anxiety lead to ED. ED then leads to increased levels of stress and anxiety. This connection can make it difficult to see a way forward.

Anxiety and stress in men

While the conversation around mental health is thankfully changing, mental health disorders like stress, depression, and anxiety still go underreported in men.

This comes down to two key issues:

Men don’t always seek help

Men are more reluctant than women to seek help for mental health problems. They tend to struggle alone and in silence. The stigma around male mental health problems can prevent some men from speaking up and getting the support they need.

Men experience anxiety and depression differently than women

Adding to the problem is the fact that anxiety and depression present differently in men. Different symptoms mean that some men–and some clinicians–may fail to recognize these mental health problems when they arise.

The importance of getting help for stress and anxiety

While opening up to a clinician or the people around you may feel challenging, it’s important to get help if you feel stressed or anxious a lot of the time. Without support or treatment, it’s likely that your mental health problems will get worse–and may even lead to physiological problems, like ED.

How are stress and erectile dysfunction linked?

So what’s the link between stress and erectile dysfunction?

Mental and physical health are closely connected, and stress can cause a host of physical symptoms. Stress can cause headaches, muscle tension, chest pain, and–as we already know–the ability to get and maintain an erection.

When you feel stressed, your body releases a stress hormone called cortisol. Cortisol reduces testosterone, which is responsible for (among other things) your libido and erectile function.

Ultimately, stress makes it harder for your brain and body to send the signals needed to trigger an erection.

Couple having relationship struggles.

How are anxiety and ED linked?

Stress is caused by an external stressor like an illness, a big life event, or a difficult period at work. In contrast, anxiety is usually driven by negative internal thoughts.

There are lots of different reasons why a person might develop anxiety. Prolonged stress and erectile dysfunction are among them.

Erectile dysfunction can cause:

  • Low self-esteem
  • Relationship problems
  • Worries about your sexual performance.

Anxiety and ED often go hand in hand. Anxiety can exacerbate your ED, making it even more difficult to get and maintain an erection.

How to treat stress, anxiety, and ED

If stress or anxiety is causing your erectile dysfunction, you need to break the cycle. Treating both mental and physical conditions is the best approach.

Stress and anxiety treatment options:


Taking better care of your physical health

Making simple changes to your everyday routine can help to reduce feelings of stress and anxiety. You should try to:

  • Get enough sleep
  • Exercise regularly
  • Eat a balanced and healthy diet
  • Limit the amount of caffeine and alcohol you consume
Talk therapy

Self-care won’t always be enough to improve your mental health. In these cases, talking with a professional is a good option. A therapist will help you explore your stress and anxiety and help you discover ways to feel better.

Alternative therapies

Alternative therapies offer another way to combat stress and anxiety. Regular meditation and acupuncture are some of the more popular options.

Doctor discussing treatment

ED treatment options


TRT (Testosterone Replacement Therapy)

Low levels of testosterone could be causing your ED or making it worse. If a blood test reveals that you have low testosterone, you could be suitable for TRT.

TRT is delivered in several different ways — via injection, oral medication, patches, and creams. This treatment can help you lose weight, feel more energetic and improve your libido and erectile function.  

Oral ED Medication

You can’t switch on the TV these days without seeing a commercial advertising oral medication for erectile dysfunction.

While these pills are available over-the-counter, it’s worth talking with a specialist about the pros and cons of each medication type. It could be that other ED treatments such as PT-141 or Trimix and Quadmix provide a more powerful and effective solution for you than pills like Viagra.

Shockwave therapy

Shockwave therapy might sound extreme. But it’s a much less complicated and painful treatment than the name suggests.

This completely painless and non-invasive procedure involves sending shockwaves into the penile tissue. These shockwaves prompt the body to repair damaged blood vessels in the penis. As a result, blood flow to the penis improves, as does your ability to maintain an erection.

LimitlessPulse™ Focused Wave Therapy is an innovative therapy exclusively at Limitless Male. LimitlessPulse™ is designed to target more and deeper blood vessels than traditional ESWT for improved, longer-lasting results.

Platelet-rich plasma therapy

Your blood contains platelets that promote healing and recovery from injury. In the treatment of ED, platelet-rich blood is injected into the penis. The platelet-rich blood makes the tissue and blood vessels of the penis healthier, which can help improve the quality of your erections.

LimitlessResurrect™ (Platelet-Rich-Plasma) is a safe, non-pharmaceutical way to treat and potentially reverse the root cause of erectile dysfunction.

Get comprehensive treatment for ED with Limitless Male

There’s no one-size-fits-all treatment when it comes to ED. Here at Limitless Male, we provide tailored treatments to help men overcome ED and improve their quality of life.  

With over 15 therapy options available, we can develop a successful treatment plan — whatever the root cause of your erectile dysfunction.

Schedule a free consultation to talk about your problems and find out what we can do to help.