Premature Ejaculation (PE) is a common male sexual dysfunction which is found in 20%-30% of the general male population. DSM-5 defines it as “time of ejaculation within approximately 1 minute following vaginal penetration.” This pattern of ejaculation must be experienced on almost all or all (approximately 75%-100%) occasions of sexual activity. The symptoms should be present for at least 6 months.
The causes of Premature Ejaculation are unclear. However, keeping in mind all the information available to us up until now, the causes of PE can be attributed to the following things:
Quick Masturbation: Some theories propose that premature ejaculation could be the consequence of masturbating too quickly in one’s teenage years due to the fear of getting caught. Due to this practice, the basic instinct of the mind and the body is to ejaculate quickly, thus making way for problems like premature ejaculation.
Abnormal hormone levels: Testosterone is the primary male sex hormone and plays a key role in the development of primary and secondary sexual characteristics. Low testosterone levels can affect a man’s sex life leading to premature ejaculation.
Hyperthyroidism: A study titled ‘The relationship between premature ejaculation and hyperthyroidism’ by the Department of Urology, Dokuz Eylul University School of Medicine, Inciralti, Izmir, Turkey established that 31 out of 43 participants who suffered from hyperthyroidism also suffered from premature ejaculation. This provides substantial evidence to prove that hyperthyroidism and premature ejaculation are linked.
Prostate Inflammation (Prostatitis): Prostate inflammation, if left untreated for an extended period of time, can spread across the pelvic muscle nerves and the ejaculatory nerves making them extremely sensitive. This, in turn, leads to premature ejaculation.
Abnormal reflex activity of the ejaculatory system: The process of ejaculation can be broken down into two phases: emission and expulsion. When men are sexually aroused, the central nervous system and the spinal cord sends signals to the peripheral nerves i.e the reproductive organs resulting in an orgasm. The disturbance or autonomous reflex of this chain can lead to premature ejaculation.
Sexual inexperience: Good sex and experience go hand in hand. Having little or no sexual experience can come in the way of good sex as it can cause premature ejaculation. This is primarily because of being extremely overwhelmed by the touch of a woman and not knowing what to do in bed.
Strict upbringing: Sex, especially in India, is considered as an act that should be done only for religious purposes or in defined situations such as marriage. Therefore, men who have grown up with such strict sex related notions tend to worry more in bed or feel guilty during the act which eventually causes them to ejaculate quickly.
Performance anxiety: Sexual inexperience or traumatic sexual experiences in the past can cause performance anxiety. Performance anxiety can lead to intense nervousness and fear in bed which in turn causes premature ejaculation.
Stress: Stress, inevitably, interferes with all the aspects of a person’s life and sex is no exception. A stressed man tends to only think about the things that are stressing him out thus making him unable to focus on the intimacy and stimulation of sex.
Traumatic experience: Traumatic sex-related experiences like being caught while masturbating, sexual abuse, being an object of ridicule or rape can completely distort the notion of sex for a man. This distorted notion, if unresolved, leads to problems like erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation.
Smoking: Smoking is usually the underlying reason behind many health problems and premature ejaculation also makes the list. Nicotine in cigarettes constrict or narrow the blood vessels which impedes the flow of oxygen rich blood to the various parts of the body, including the penis. In addition to that, smoking negatively impacts a man’s sexual stamina in bed leading to problems like erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation.
Binge Drinking: Many men turn to alcohol as a temporary fix for premature ejaculation as it slows down the blood circulation in the body and reduces the sensitivity of the nerve endings of the skin of the penis. However, depending on alcohol to perform in bed every night drains the body of all its stamina, vital nutrients and essential fluids which negatively impacts one’s performance in the bedroom. Binge drinking is also known to cause erectile dysfunction which brings along premature ejaculation and other sex-related concerns.
Drugs/Prescription Medicines: While drugs/prescription medicines are known to enhance the experience of sex, they are also known to have detrimental and damaging effects on one’s sexual performance in the long run. Ejaculation is essentially the function of the brain and because drugs/prescription medicines alter the balance of various chemicals in the brain, it can cause problems like premature ejaculation.
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