People who have a difficult time lulling themselves to sleep are prone to developing health risks—erectile dysfunction being one of them.
For some people, the difficulty in falling asleep can be traced to preexisting sleep disorders, like obstructive sleep apnea.
For others, it’s a mixture of sleep deprivation caused by stress and bad sleeping habits that continue to ruin their quality of life.
The question then lies, is there anything you can do about it? Can you treat and manage the symptoms of chronic sexual dysfunction caused by sleeplessness?
To cut it short, yes, you can treat erectile dysfunction caused by lack of sleep. But first, let’s look at the relationship between sleep and a healthy sex life.
How Much Sleep Does an Adult Need?
The National Sleep Foundation recommends adults sleep anywhere between 7 to 9 hours a night.
Unfortunately, a hectic work environment can make it difficult to achieve a good night’s sleep. According to one study, more than one-fourth of all adults are sleep deprived.
This reality makes many at risk of developing physical and mental health ailments. This includes:
- Heart disease
All the aforementioned ailments also increase the risk of erectile dysfunction (ED).
How Common is Erectile Dysfunction?
According to a study, one in three men aged 40 and older have some form of erectile dysfunction.
In another study, it’s been estimated that 322 million men will suffer from erectile dysfunction in 2025.
There’s no question about it: erectile dysfunction is affecting a ton of people, and drastically altering their sex life for the worse.
Fortunately, there are a variety of treatment options you can undergo to reverse and manage it. Talk to an ED doctor in St. Louis to get a proper diagnosis and recommended course of action.
How Does Sleep Affect Sex?
Bad sleeping habits can impact all parts of your health—and your sexual health is no different.
From depression to anxiety, there are plenty of nasty side effects and conditions that may arise due to sleeplessness.
In addition, these mental health conditions all contribute to the main topic at hand—erectile dysfunction.
When the body has poor sleep, it suppresses the release of sex hormones like testosterone and estrogen. In its place, stress hormones like adrenaline and cortisol get released. This comes in the form of anxious thoughts at night, which make you feel more alert to the point that it keeps you awake.
In addition, when your body is constantly in its “fight-or-flight” mode due to lack of sleep, you’ll be more prone to experiencing a diminished interest in sexual activity.
However, the connection between sleep and sex isn’t purely biological. Sleep deprivation can also make you feel more tired, which is a valid reason for many couples to not want to have sex in the first place.
Furthermore, this can spiral down to relationship problems and different libido wavelengths, which is a problem on its own.
But when you combine that with a decrease in intimacy and an increase in stress levels, it’s not unreasonable to understand why sleep-deprived couples wouldn’t want to have sex in the first place.
Do Sex and Sleep Have a Positive Relationship?
Yes. Just like how sleep deprivation and a decreased libido go hand-in-hand, the opposite is also true. If you start to sleep longer, studies claim that you’ll be more interested in sex.
Engaging in sexual activity (and having an orgasm, in particular) signals the release of oxytocin, a chemical messenger in the brain that cues the body to feel relaxed and safe. It also inhibits the release of cortisol, allowing people to feel tired enough to fall asleep.
Achieving an orgasm through masturbation also provides similar benefits, as the chemical release is the same.
Can Sleep Disorders Affect Erectile Dysfunction?
Yes. Researchers have found that a large portion of men with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) also have erectile dysfunction.
Another study discovered that men with OSA have a higher likelihood of having ED (about 63%) compared to men who didn’t have OSA (about 47%).
One likely reason for this phenomenon is that testosterone and oxygen levels are restricted in men with OSA. However, research is still a bit sparse in this area.
How to Sleep Better
For some cases of erectile dysfunction, bettering your sleep habits is one of the best ways to improve your sex life.
Here are some tips on how to sleep better:
- Establish a regular sleep schedule. Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, even on weekends. This will help train your body to wind down and be ready for sleep at a certain time each night.
- Create a relaxing bedtime routine. About an hour before you plan to turn in, do something calming, such as reading or taking a bath. This will help signal to your body that it’s time to sleep.
- Keep your bedroom dark, quiet, and cool. These conditions are ideal for sleeping. If you can’t control the noise outside, try using a fan or earplugs to block out sound.
If you have a sleep disorder, get a proper diagnosis from a doctor first. They’ll likely require you to undergo a specific treatment plan for your condition.
How to Treat Erectile Dysfunction Problems
Erectile dysfunction may be caused by sleep, but it’s also a result of many other health disorders.
Aside from sleeping better, improving your lifestyle can make all the difference in your health. Here are some ways you can treat and remedy your ED problems at home.
- Restructure your diet plan
- Undergo a weight loss program
- Work out regularly
- Avoid vices like nicotine and alcohol
- Avoid medication that worsens libido
- Manage stress
Clinically-approved methods are also ways to treat erectile dysfunction, including:
Contact St. Louis’ Top Male Health Clinic for an Erectile Dysfunction Consultation and Treatment Plan
It’s difficult enough to find time to sleep throughout the day. However, given the prevalence of health problems such as erectile dysfunction, it’s more crucial than ever to prioritize a proper sleep routine.
Want to get treated? The medical professionals at Paramount Men’s Medical Center specialize in treating conditions that impact men’s health. Our concierge approach positions your unique case at the centerpoint of our focus. We help you keep an erection without pills by treating the underlying issues that led to conditions such as ED, PE, Low Testosterone, and more. Contact our office today to schedule an appointment.