Sexual Problems in Men and the Emotional Consequences

This is a topic that many people do not want to talk about, especially men. But the reality is that many individuals are experiencing sexual dysfunctions that often lead to psychological and emotional distress.

There are several forms of sexual dysfunction. Many men experience a loss of libido (sexual desire) or premature ejaculation. The latter occurs when men ejaculate before or at the onset of sexual intercourse. Another problem is retrograde ejaculation, where the semen is rerouted to the bladder instead of through the urethra. The sphincter of the bladder contracts, and the semen goes into the urethra at the lower pressure.

Another common affliction in men with sexual problems is erectile dysfunction, which means they have difficulty achieving or maintaining an erection. This is prevalent in men of advanced age or who have diseases like diabetes, prostate problems, heart disease, or any other medical condition. Stress and anxiety can also be key factors. Men with erectile dysfunction may believe they cannot have a satisfying sex life.

The inability or difficulty to have sex with their partner may become a nightmare for men, and some may experience acute episodes of depression. This affects not only their interpersonal relationships but also their self-esteem and dignity. Men often avoid talking about their problem, refuse to accept the situation, and try to focus on other things.

Studies indicate that many men with a sexual dysfunction experience anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, and a decreased quality of life. In general, these men keep their feelings hidden and rarely seek professional guidance to help process them. As a result, the men are emotionally distant and often avoid physical contact with a partner. They fear that any such contact would precipitate the desire for sexual intercourse. The fact that they recognize their inability to achieve an erection, for example, further increases their level of anxiety. Some focus only on the inability to perform sexually, and they therefore feel unsuccessful and frustrated. Their dysfunction uses much of their mental energy, which leads to uncontrollable stress.

For diagnosing an individual with a sexual disorder, it is necessary to carefully review the history of the symptoms. Identifying whether the problem causing the sexual dysfunction is physical, psychological, or emotional is extremely important. The evaluations of a urologist (a doctor specializing in the urinary tract and male reproductive system), an endocrinologist (a doctor specializing in diseases that affect the glands and hormones), a neurologist (a doctor specializing in disorders of the nervous system), and a mental health professional are vital to determine the cause of the problem.

If the individual has relevant physical examinations, and if it determined that the cause of the sexual disorder is not somatic, he may need to seek help from a mental health professional to determine if the cause of his illness is psychological. But even if the cause is mainly physical and the individual is experiencing psychological and emotional distress, he still should receive professional counseling to process his feelings.

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