If you’ve experienced erectile dysfunction (ED), you’re not alone. ED affects 4.3 million men in the UK*, and if it happens only occasionally, it’s unlikely that it’s anything serious.
If you’re worried, you can ask your pharmacist for advice; treatment is available over the counter to help alleviate the symptoms.
“When a man experiences ED symptoms, it can knock his confidence in the bedroom,” says sexual health counsellor Sarah-Jane Swanley. With help available for this medical problem, here are six ways for you and your partner to relax about ED, reconnect sexually and gain confidence in bed once again.
*Men reporting occasional and frequent difficulty getting or maintaining an erection [ref. Kantar TNS Omnibus Survey Dec 2010 – in a survey of 1,033 men]
Reconnect with your partner
Some men can feel alone and isolated when they’ve experienced ED, so it’s important you and your partner spend time together doing the things you’ve always loved – socialising, going for walks, cinema, music. This time will give you plenty to talk about and help you reconnect as a couple.
Get yourself checked out medically
Talking about ED in a calm, non-judgmental way, away from the bedroom, will also help you both come to terms with it and make an action plan to tackle it.
Help is available. Because ED is a medical problem, you can visit your pharmacist for a discreet consultation. After talking to you, and if the pharmacist believes it’s suitable, they can supply VIAGRA Connect® over the counter to treat your ED symptoms. VIAGRA Connect® works by relaxing blood vessels in the penis, to let more blood flow into it giving you an erection when you’re sexually aroused.
After sex, your erection should subside as it would normally.
The pharmacist will recommend that you make a follow-up appointment with your GP within the first six months of taking VIAGRA Connect®.
Relax before bed
“It’s important to put a relaxing buffer between the stresses and strains of work and family life and bedtime,” says Sarah-Jane. “Date nights are a great idea as they can recapture something of those heady days when you first met and the relationship was new and exciting”. Something even as simple as snuggling up on the sofa with a couple of episodes of a favourite programme on catch-up can be relaxing before bed.
Create a seductive environment
Nothing breaks the spell of going upstairs after a romantic evening like baskets of laundry dumped on the bed, damp towels on the floor and sheets that really could do with a wash.
Make your bedroom an uncluttered, clean, stress-free sanctuary, with freshly-laundered bedlinen, low lighting or candles and some soft music - somewhere you’d like to spend time making love with your partner.
Focus on arousal
You’ve created a relaxing bedtime environment, now it’s time to focus on what arouses you both. You may enjoy watching erotic videos, reading out passages from erotic fiction to each other, wearing sexy underwear or playing with sex toys, in which case, go right ahead.
“If you don’t feel 100% comfortable doing any of these things, don’t, as they can make intimacy feel artificial and defeat the whole object,” advises Sarah-Jane.
Take focus off the penis
The penis, clitoris and nipples are the most obvious erogenous zones for men and women. But when it comes to regaining confidence in bed if you’ve experienced ED, it helps to take the focus off your penis and onto other, more unexpected erogenous zones.
Your skin, with its multitude of nerve endings, is an all-over erogenous zone, depending on how it’s touched.
Kissing, cuddling and caressing increases the connection between you, and focusing on foreplay rather than jumping straight to penetrative sex builds arousal. You will both appreciate the extra time spent touching and caressing, and it may be that you don’t need to go as far as penetrative sex to achieve orgasm.
“When the focus is on foreplay, it takes pressure off the man to ‘perform the deed’ and couples can enjoy a different kind of sex. Confidence will build and penetrative sex can resume in its own good time,” says Sarah-Jane.
VIAGRA Connect® 50mg film coated tablets. Contains Sildenafil. For erectile dysfunction in adult men. Always read the leaflet.
For more information on ED and VIAGRA Connect®, visit viagraconnect.co.uk.