Health professionals who can help men with erectile dysfunction
As the saying goes, “Teamwork is the ability to work together toward a common goal” is very applicable in medicine. For men experiencing erectile dysfunction (ED), it may take more than one health care professional to solve the issue.
Every man deserves the best in terms of which medical professionals to seek out discovering the cause and ideal treatment for this condition. Since the causes of ED can be multifactorial depending on what is triggering it, will determine which healthcare workers are best suited for each individual man. Once a man is able to assemble a competent health care and support team for his ED, he will have a better chance in successfully correcting the situation.
Here are possible health professionals who can provide the necessary treatment a man needs for his ED:
· Primary Care Physician
The most logical place to start is with his primary care physician or family doctor. Usually they will be familiar with his health history and possible underlying health conditions contributing to ED. After performing a physical examination, reviewing medications taken, and ordering blood tests, he will likely ask questions such as when did the ED start, level of sexual desire, are there morning erections, and if the man is using illegal drugs, alcohol or smoking.
Depending on the findings, they may treat ED initially with oral medications, and if those don’t work, refer a man on to a specialist.
The second most logical health care professional to visit for ED is a urologist. Urologists specialize in treating problems with the urinary tract and reproductive systems. They are well-trained and experienced in evaluating ED along with prostate problems such as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), premature ejaculation, and prostate cancer.
If a man’s ED is found to be associated with underlying heart disease, it’s possible a doctor may recommend a man see a cardiologist for an evaluation. Since erections depend on the blood vessels that serve the penis, it is not surprising that vascular disease can be a leading cause of ED. A cardiologist can do a thorough check-up for signs of heart disease which includes testing for high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
Endocrinologists specialize in disorders of the hormonal system. If the suspected cause is found to be a diagnosis of diabetes, low testosterone, thyroid disease, or prolactin levels, a visit to an endocrinologist will be a smart move. Low hormonal levels or thyroid issues can usually be corrected with medication. It is important to rule out if a man has diabetes as men with the disease are twice as likely to experience ED as men without the disease. Diabetes harms the nerves that instruct the penile arteries to dilate and can restrict blood flow to the penis by damaging blood vessels. Once a man is able to better control his blood sugar levels, this can help improve and prevent complications of ED.
· Mental Health Counselor and/or Sex Therapist
Sometimes ED is due to a psychological issue such as depression, anxiety or a relationship issue. By talking with a trained mental health professional, a man can learn coping skills to help improve his mental outlook and relationships leading to less ED.
Working with a sex therapist is another approach a man can take for treating ED. These professionals can help men find new ways of enhancing their relationship with their partner advising them on how to better meet one another’s sexual needs.
Any medication prescribed to a man for ED gives him an opportunity to talk with a pharmacist on possible side effects and how to take it. Pharmacists can also keep track of all medications a man is taking and alerting him if any of the medications might have interactions.
· Registered Dietitian
One way to combat and correct ED is for a man to eat a well-balanced diet. To help him evaluate his current eating patterns, a meeting with a registered dietitian can be helpful in providing him with information on making healthy food choices.
· Exercise Coach
To really get blood flowing and to help reduce any excess pounds, participating in a supervised exercise program can help reduce symptoms of ED. Whether a man hires a personal trainer or decides to embark on his own, moving more can be good for achieving erections. Even simply walking just 30 minutes a day has been found to be linked to a 41% drop in risk for ED. Other research suggests that moderate exercise can help restore sexual performance in obese middle-aged men with ED. Another move to make for ED is to enhance the pelvic floor muscles by doing Kegel exercises. Strong pelvic floor muscles enhance rigidity during erections and helps keep blood from leaving the penis by pressing on a key vein.