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Erectile dysfunction (ED) can be temporary or chronic, depending on the cause. Temporary (short-term) ED may be caused by emotional stress or anxiety or lifestyle habits such as excessive alcohol drinking or cigarette smoking. Coping with the stress or anxiety in a healthy manner and taking care of negative lifestyle habits may resolve ED. Sometimes medications used to treat hypertension or depression can result in temporary ED. Changing the medication may reverse ED.
Chronic (long-term) ED may be caused by more serious health conditions such as heart disease, high blood pressure, atherosclerosis, diabetes and multiple sclerosis. These chronic diseases damage the arteries, nerves, and tissues, which interrupt the necessary communication between the brain, spinal column and penis. Treating these diseases, along with treating the chronic ED with medication, is important to enjoying a satisfying sexual relationship again.
It can be temporary or chronic depending on the underlying reason for the dysfunction. Temporary causes include medications, mood, social factors, hormones, and bicycling. Chronic causes include chronic disease like diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, heart disease, and nerve injury.
Any guy can have an off day. Some afternoons your usually reliable golf swing might produce nothing but ugly slices that curl into the woods and plunk down in ponds. Likewise, it's perfectly normal to experience an occasional problem producing an erection. Maybe you were stressed out or tired. Or, hard as it may seem to believe, you just weren't in the mood.
On the other hand, some men develop temporary erectile dysfunction (ED) when they take certain medications. The list of potential culprits is long and includes drugs used to treat high blood pressure, heartburn, depression, pain, and other conditions. If you develop persistent erectile dysfunction while taking a medication your doctor may be able to switch you to a different drug.
Of course, erectile dysfunction can become chronic. The problem becomes more common as men age. But erectile dysfunction is not inevitable, and if it becomes an issue in your life, your doctor can recommend effective treatment.
Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.