Talking to partner about performance-enhancing medication

Talking to partners about erectile dysfunction and performance-enhancing medication

There are a number of reasons why someone would choose to use these medications for purposes other than erectile dysfunction. They may be curious about the extent to which their performance will be enhanced. They may be experiencing peer pressure. Or if they’ve had too much to drink, they may take the medication to combat the negative impacts of alcohol on performance. Whatever the reason, the number of people choosing to take erectile dysfunction medications for recreational purposes is increasing.

If you are concerned about your partners use of erectile dysfunction medication getting to the root of why is key. Relationships thrive on communication and that includes speaking to our partners openly about our sex lives.

What is erectile dysfunction?

Erectile dysfunction is the inability to develop and/or maintain a penile erection during sexual performance. Causes of erectile dysfunction can be psychological or physiological/medical. 

Psychological impotence (complication with erection due to stress or performance anxiety, rather than physical impossibility) is the most common contributor to erectile difficulties. The issue often gets resolved when their anxiety dissipates. Most people will experience this at some point in their lives, especially when they are highly stressed or are in the early stages of a relationship. But the difficulties are often short-lived and do not create continuing problems in a relationship. In these circumstances, pharmaceutical intervention is not necessarily successful.

Erectile dysfunction caused by physiological or medical reasons – such as a health condition or side effects from other medications – is less common. In this scenario, age is a primary contributor. The National Institutes of Health estimate that about 5 per cent of individuals around 40-years-old will experience erectile dysfunction on an ongoing basis, whereas the number rises to 15 to 25 per cent among 65-year-olds.

If your partner does not experience erectile dysfunction, they are currently using or considering using, these medications recreationally. There are two main concerns with recreational usage:

One, erectile medications have side effects. They place stress on the major organs – in particular, the heart, liver, and kidneys – and the long-term effects are unknown.

And two, there is some emerging evidence that people may experience adverse impacts on their sexual function and become psychologically reliant on the medications.

Have a conversation

Having an open conversation about your perceptions and feelings surrounding your sex life may serve to ease their mind. So, here are some ways to talk about your concerns with your partner:

Explain the side effects and potential long term impacts on your partner – especially the latter as it may serve to be the strongest deterrent.

Try and understand where your partner is coming from. Perhaps they have some insecurities about their performance that they have been reticent to share.

Tell them how great you feel about your sex life and suggest ways to add spontaneity and excitement to your intimate relationship without the use of medications.

Pollock Clinics offers treatment for erectile dysfunction as well as penile frenuloplasty and frenulectomy and circumcision revision. For more information, visit their website to learn more or call today to book your appointment 604-717-6200.

MagazineEmory Oakley