Aging is not kind to the penis. As we get older, male sexual performance can diminish quickly along with our overall sexual health. Our equipment slowly stops working and systems begin to shut-down. We stop being sexually active with ourselves and others, which only makes many of the problems worse.
So, here's the obvious question. Why don't we do anything? Why do we simply allow our sexual health and performance to degrade? There is no clear answer here. In fact, it's a much larger discussion for another time. Much of the problem is rooted in our lack of education and understanding of our own male sexuality. You can learn more about this topic here.
The fact is, however, that most of us are either oblivious to the changes or willfully blind. We simply accept them as a matter of course or ignore them, hoping that they will miraculously disappear by themselves. We rarely take action to address sexual dysfunction problems that come with age, even though there are so many ways to combat and reverse them. Let us explore the conditions, when they begin to present themselves, and what you do to address them.
You may be surprised that it is not erectile dysfunction or "ED." With all the money spent on pharmaceuticals, all the commercials, and pills claiming to cure ED, you would think this was the most common male sexual disorder. But, it's not.
Premature ejaculation, most universally defined as the inability to have penetrative sex for more than three minutes, affects more men, regardless of age, than any other condition. Some studies put it as high as 75%, while others say it is closer to 30%.
Either way, it's a huge number, and the condition can wreak havoc on a man's sexual performance and physiological well being.
Coming in at number two is ED, which is generally defined as the inability to attain or maintain an erection adequate for the sexual satisfaction of both partners. By age 40 nearly 50% of men begin to experience ED. This number increases by 10% with each passing decade. More than 12 million males in the United States alone suffer from some form of ED. There are many reasons for this condition, so of which we'll explore below.
In third place, shrinking penis. You read it correctly. The penis shrinks as you get older. We'd consider this a pretty significant sexual disorder. So what causes it? There are many factors, including prostate surgery, weight gain, lack of use (also known as disuse atrophy), prostate cancer surgery, and Peyronie's Disease. You can learn more about the causes and how to prevent them here.
There are so many reasons why male sexual health and performance degrades over time. The following is a list of some of the most significant causes and along with links to resources where you can learn more about them:
Aging is not kind to the penis and sexual performance. Bodies begin to change and testosterone levels drop. Here's what really happens to your penis as you age! With each passing decade, our bodies begin to change. Genetic conditions manifest themselves. lifestyle choices catch up with us. Simply put, life happens, and it impacts our sexual health and performance.
Here’s a breakdown by the decade of what may happen to your sexual health and what you can do to maintain it:
Your sexual appetite is massive. Sex often occupies the front burners of your mind. It often requires very little stimulation to achieve arousal, even. You wake up in the middle of the night and morning with a rock hard penis. When you climax, the orgasm is intense. Many times you forcefully ejaculate an impressive volume of semen with an arc-like trajectory. Testosterone levels are at their height.
But even with such sexual power, there is an Achilles heel. It's called premature ejaculation caused by many things, including overly sensitive penis skin, and it the number one male sexual disorder that plagues millions of young men. How do you combat this pernicious condition? One of the best ways is to train for the bedroom. That's right. Exercise the muscles that support strong ejaculatory control.
Things start to change for men ever so slowly. Perhaps even so gradually that you barely even notice them. While your sex drive remains vigorous, it is not as "all-consuming" as it once was. Blood flow is robust. Testosterone levels are high. The penis is working for you. Your manhood is strong and powerful, but it may not get hard as spontaneously as before. Some touch and stimulation may be required to develop full rigidity. Using good lubrication can help.
The time it takes to achieve wood after ejaculating increases. While you may never be aware of it, your pelvic muscle strength diminishes significantly. This is a great time to start exercising your pelvic muscles to prevent the onset of ED and keep everything in good working order and keep your penis in shape.
This is when most of the problems begin. By age 40 nearly 50% of men begin to experience some form of ED. This number increases by 10% with each passing decade. While you are still desire and need sex, it typically isn't with the same driven and passion, you had two decades earlier. You can usually get a pretty good quality hard-on, the penis now requires significantly more stimulation. The gravity-defying ones of the past decades don’t have quite the angle they used to. At times you may lose it before the sexual act is completed. You notice that orgasms have lost some of their kick and climax has become a bit feebler than previous decades. Getting a second erection after orgasm is often difficult. What are the main culprits during this decade? Weight gain, being out-of-shape, medications that reduce blood flow, and interrupt erectile function, the onset of Peyronie's Disease from scar tissue and penile trauma, and dramatically weakening pelvic muscles. Here are some great tips to maintain healthy and strong sexual performance during your 40's.
This is the decade where the most significant changes happen. Sexual function and performance is noticeably diminished. Nighttime and morning erections become few and far between. You prematurely lose your erection before you or your partner climax. Sex is no longer a sport, but a recreational activity. It's sometimes just reserved for weekends. Your orgasms are different, with significantly less intensity. The volume of semen and the force of ejaculation diminishes. The loss of penis size begins. Less blood is flowing to the penis. Testosterone levels are decreasing. Scar tissue has developed. Frankly speaking, this decade really sucks. What are the many reasons for the changes? First and foremost is diminishing prostate health, prostate surgery, and prostate cancer treatment, which are responsible for creating ED in millions of men. Here's what you can do to best prepare for and recover from prostate surgery.
This is not a good decade for male sexual function. Testosterone levels have plummeted, causing diminished desire. While a firm penis is obtainable, it often requires a good amount of coaxing and coercion. Your penis can go soft at any time during sex. Spontaneous nighttime and early morning wood are a thing of the past. Decreased penis size may be noticeable. Orgasms are no longer so climactic, and explosive ejaculations are a matter of history. Viagra and Cialis may not work for you at all. Amazingly, these medications only work in 50% of men and millions of others can't take them because of underlying medical conditions. If you are really struggling to achieve an erection you may want to explore a combined treatment of nerve stimulation therapy and pelvic muscle exercise.
You may still have some remaining sexual desire left in you, but it’s a far cry from the fire in your groin you had when you were a younger man and blood flow has noticeably dropped. Penile size is decreasing further and may appear smaller. At moments, the best that you can do is to obtain a partially inflated erection that cannot penetrate, despite pushing, shoving, and manipulating every which way. Is sex a lost cause? Not necessarily. Explore all options with your physician. You may also want to look at combination therapies, including the aggressive Erection Recovery Program.
Although you as an octogenarian may still be able to have sex, most of your brethren cannot; however, they remain appreciative that at least they still have their penises to use as spigots, allowing them to stand to urinate. If you can have sex on your birthday and anniversary, you are doing much better than most. You may be more concerned about incontinence than sex that this point. There are many ways to help stop the dribble and improve urinary tract health, including pelvic floor training.
To quote the comedian George Burns, “sex at age 90 is like trying to shoot pool with a rope.” You're more grateful to be alive, sex is simply low on the list of priorities. You can live vicariously through pleasant memories of your days of glory that are lodged deep in the recesses of your mind, as long as your memory holds out. So, if and when you get an erection, you never want to waste it!
What can we take away from all of this? Getting older is not fun, especially when it comes to sexual health and performance. More importantly, however, don't let the changes simply happen. Take control. With each decade, make sure you are doing everything possible to maintain a healthy lifestyle and a happy sex life. Read. Educate yourself. And, explore all of your options. Sex is important on so many levels throughout your life. Don't let it go without a fight!
To learn more, check out Andrew Siegel, M.D., Urologist, author of the highly acclaimed book, Male Pelvic Fitness, Optimizing Your Sexual and Urinary Health.
Did you know there are more Google searches about penises than any other body part? For every 100 questions about the nether regions, there are 67 for the heart, 57 for the eyes and 40 for the head. Find out what exactly men are searching for!