Porn-Induced Erectile Dysfunction – Causes, Treatments, FAQs

  • Author: Sumit
  • Published: December 21, 2022
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Up until 20 years ago, erectile dysfunction (ED) was mainly an issue for older men.

Today, ED is becoming increasingly common for younger men. In fact, this graph shows an increase of 11% in men under 30 seeking treatment for their ED from 2010 to 2015 — and that number is only growing.

But what’s really hurting men’s ability to get hard?

Porn-induced erectile dysfunction (PIED) is most likely the culprit with 2.5 million people visiting the world’s most popular adult sites every minute. Yikes. And if that’s not enough, porn consumption and erectile dysfunction have both increased in tandem with each other.

If you’ve suffered from PIED, you know that it sucks. And if you haven’t, maybe you’re afraid you will. Either way, don’t stress. You’re in the right place. We’ll teach you what you need to do to heal yourself.

But first, let me welcome you to the ultimate guide to porn-induced erectile dysfunction.

Keep reading to learn the science behind PIED and how to know if you have it. ED (erectile dysfunction) is a complex issue, so it could be due to something other than porn. We’ll cover other possible causes of ED as well.

It’s also important to get a diagnosis from your doctor. Browsing the internet to diagnose yourself isn’t always the greatest idea. Sometimes it’s best to leave it to the professionals.

Finally, we’ll teach you how to treat PIED and even cope with ED if you have no way out.

Disclaimer: If you have any medical concerns, please talk to a healthcare professional. The information found in this article is simply for educational purposes and does not substitute for medical advice. Consult your doctor before self-diagnosis or applying any fixes.

What Is Porn-Induced Erectile Dysfunction?

Porn-induced erectile dysfunction happens when a man can’t get or maintain an erection during sexual activity because of excessive porn use.

A closely related condition called erectile dysfunction occurs when a man isn’t able to get or keep an erection due to factors other than porn.

When the inability to get an erection is because of frequent porn use, we say it’s “porn-induced” meaning porn is the reason behind the ED. In this article, we’ll look at both PIED and ED.

Porn use can also cause other sexual dysfunction such as reduced interest in sex and delayed ejaculation.

The Science Behind Porn-Induced Erectile Dysfunction

An erection requires many bodily functions to be coordinated. Such functions include the brain’s arousal chemistry, mood, blood circulation, and hormones. If any of these are off, your erection won’t be as intense, or worse — you won’t have one.

Desensitization plays a huge role in disrupting these processes. The limitless novelty found in internet porn changes your sexual appetite to the point that your partner can’t arouse you. Let’s take a look into the brain to see how this happens.

The reward center in your brain is responsible for releasing feel-good chemicals after a healthy activity. The “high” from these chemicals make you want to repeat the activity over and over.

The bad news: Your brain can be tricked. It can’t tell the difference between healthy activity and a drug. So when your brain releases those feel-good chemicals because of a drug, you’re more motivated to continue using the drug.

semen retention on brain

Your erection depends on this reward pathway described above. When you’re only getting off to hardcore porn, you’re training your brain to crave more porn. As a result, you’ll have trouble getting aroused with a partner.

The good news: Your brain is a champ! It can fight the negative effects of porn and even reverse them.

But before you begin the fight, you must know your enemy.

Is your ED a result of porn, or something else?

That’s a question we’ll help you answer in the next two sections.

How to Know if You Have Porn-Induced Erectile Dysfunction

Before you figure out whether you have PIED or not, you need to know what to look out for. For your convenience, we’ve curated a list of the common signs of PIED below. Keep in mind that even with these symptoms, your ED might not be porn-induced. We’ll talk more about this later.

How to Know If You Have Erectile Dysfunction

  • Inability to get an erection (duh)
  • Trouble keeping an erection — this can be normal. However, if you’re unable to get or keep an erection frequently, it’s time to see your doctor.
  • Reduced sex drive
  • Embarrassment or guilt
  • Low self-esteem

Symptoms of Related Sexual Disorders

Some sexual disorders are linked to ED and may cause similar symptoms. It’s important to look out for these additional symptoms to see if you need to treat another disorder.

  • Premature ejaculation
  • Inability to have an orgasm after prolonged stimulation
  • Delayed Ejaculation

How to Know if Porn Is the Cause of Your Erectile Dysfunction

Knowing if your ED is porn-related makes a difference in how it’ll be treated. If you’re facing any of the symptoms below, you most likely have PIED.

  • You can get erect and have orgasms with porn, but you can’t do the same with a partner.
  • You can get erect and have orgasms with a partner, but orgasm takes a long time and you feel disinterested in the middle of sex.
  • You can get erect during sex, but you can only orgasm by imagining porn.
  • You constantly prefer porn over sex. To you, it feels much better than sex.

Other Causes of Erectile Dysfunction

An article about PIED wouldn’t be complete without talking about ED on its own. ED is an issue that can have many different causes.

Even though you’re showing all the signs of PIED, your ED might not be because of porn. Let’s explore a few other causes of ED.

Physical Causes

There are many physical causes of ED. We’ve listed some common ones below. The good news about physical causes is that they’re within your control. A healthy diet, exercise, and high-quality sleep in addition to kicking bad habits can usually fix the physical causes of ED.

  • Poor diet and sleep (insomnia, sleep apnea, circadian rhythm dysfunction, lack of REM sleep)
  • Tobacco/alcohol/other drugs/smoking
  • Imbalanced hormones (get your doctor to do a blood test)
  • High blood pressure
  • Obesity

Medication

There are many medications that interfere with a man’s ability to get an erection. It’s more common for older men to use these meds. Here is a list of meds that inhibit your ability to get an erection.

  • Diuretics (pills that increase urine flow)
  • High blood pressure meds
  • Antihistamines
  • Antidepressants
  • Parkinson’s disease drugs
  • Antiarrhythmics (drugs for irregular heartbeat)
  • Tranquilizers and sedatives
  • Muscle relaxants
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Histamine H2-receptor antagonists
  • Hormones
  • Chemotherapy medications
  • Prostate cancer drugs
  • Anti-seizure medications

Psychological Causes

ED can also have psychological causes. Before you jump the gun and diagnose yourself with PIED, take a moment with a professional and find out if your ED is due to a psychological cause.

sad man sitting on edge of bed

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Stress
  • Mental health disorders
  • Feeling self-conscious
  • Relationship issues

Stats for Nerds

  • According to a study from 2020, 90% of men skip ahead to the most arousing scenes.
  • 23% of men under 35 reported ED when having sex with a partner.
  • 20% of male porn users need to find more extreme material to get aroused.
  • Research suggests over 50% of people with ED don’t have trouble getting aroused with porn.
  • Studies show that 45% of young men with a porn addiction also have ED.
  • A survey from the University of Antwerp with 3,267 men indicated that more porn watched was linked to higher rates of ED.

How Doctors Diagnose ED

We strongly recommend visiting your doctor as the next step to solving your ED problem. Here’s what to expect when visiting your doctor:

  • Blood test – A blood test can reveal low testosterone, diabetes, heart disease, and other possible causes of ED.
  • Urine test – A urine test is used to look for signs of diabetes.
  • Ultrasound/doppler exam – This exam measures the flow of blood into your penis.
  • Psychological exam – Your health professional will check for the psychological disorders listed above.

How to Treat Porn-Induced Erectile Dysfunction

Now that you know your ED is porn-induced, you need to know how to treat it. The rest of this guide will focus on curing the porn-induced variation of ED.

Treating PIED is much simpler than curing a non-porn-related case of ED. You can skip all the medication, needles (big yikes), and surgery (penile implants). The solution? You simply have to stop watching porn. We didn’t say it’d be easy!

How to Stop Watching Porn

For most, quitting porn is a process that takes years. Many have cemented the porn-watching habit into their lives, so freeing themselves will take double the effort. It’ll take a long time to refine techniques that make it easier to abstain.

Let’s take a look at what you can do to fast-track your progress and be free of porn.

A Strong “Why”

The emotional foundation of why you want to quit porn is where you should start. If you don’t have a strong reason, your intention will be weak. If your intention is weak, all the actions that follow your pursuit will be half-hearted.

You can make excellent use of apps that let you write a motivational tidbit or add images as a reminder of why you’re trying to quit. Get creative and use loved ones, special memories, past failures, and your future hopes and dreams to motivate you.

Online Communities

We thought now would be a good time to revisit a question posed earlier.

Should you reduce your porn usage or go cold turkey?

Going cold turkey is a much more difficult approach. But it honestly depends on what your goal is. If you’re a casual porn user that wants to have a more satisfying sex life, you might aim to masturbate once a week.

If you’re an addict suffering from PIED and want to reclaim your sex life, you’ll want to build yourself up to quit porn for good.

nofap niche

Either way, online communities are an excellent way to connect with like-minded people. There are even specific communities that promote masturbation without porn, and semen retention if you’re more spiritually inclined. Having support will make it much easier to reach your goal.

Porn Blockers

There are many software options on the internet that can block pornographic content. Some users are clever enough to change the password to something they can’t remember. They jot this password down and leave it with a trusted family member.

Keep in mind that porn blockers are simply a tool that will assist you. They shouldn’t be seen as a method to quit porn.

Find New Hobbies

There are many healthy hobbies that lend themselves to quitting PMO (porn, masturbation, orgasm). Activities that engage your body and mind in new ways are extremely favored. This is because they allow the brain to form new neural pathways, and the old ones linked to porn will slowly fade away and lie dormant.

In other words, you’re physically changing your brain to combat porn.

Think of yourself as a 5-star general that’s been given the task to arm your foot soldiers to take out the enemy. Of course, your new habits are your weapons, the enemy is porn, and your mind, body, and soul are the battlefield.

Common hobbies that users enjoy are martial arts, learning a new instrument or language, or hitting the gym. These hobbies work great when used in tandem with semen retention. The extra energy has a healthy channel to flow through your newfound hobbies.

Professional Help

Professional help is especially recommended to those with a psychological issue that leads them to compulsively watch porn. Help can come in the form of 1 on 1 therapy, group therapy, or rehab centers.

These methods will uncover the reason you’re using porn. After the reason for your porn use is found, professionals will help you implement methods to control your usage.

Living With Erectile Dysfunction

There will come a point where you have to live with ED. This will most likely be due to age, a time when your ED is irreversible. Or perhaps your doctor has told you your case is incurable.

But not all hope is lost! There are a few things you can do to maintain the quality of your sex life.

  • Erectile drugs are the most common solution for men who have reached an age where they can’t get it up anymore. Be warned, there is a risk of vision loss. Always consult your doctor before using any medication. Common erectile drugs include viagra, (sildenafil) / injectable meds, and suppositories.
  • Your insurance may cover these drugs, but sometimes you’re limited to a certain number of pills. If you have to pay out of pocket the cost is about $15-$20 per pill.
  • Testosterone therapy may be recommended by your doctor if your testosterone levels are low. Find out more about testosterone therapy and its risks by clicking here.
  • Communicate the expectations of sex with your partner. The frequency and intensity of sex are a few things that should be talked about during these conversations.

Frequently Asked Questions

There are a lot of questions surrounding erectile dysfunction. We’ve answered a few below to satisfy your curiosity.

Why am I suddenly getting erectile dysfunction?

As discussed above, there are a wide variety of reasons erectile dysfunction can happen. Physical issues, namely those to do with the heart, blood flow, and obesity can cause ED. If your ED has suddenly occurred, consider getting a blood test.

Mental health issues could also be the reason. Stress, relationship issues, depression, and other psychological issues could also be the cause.

What is the fastest way to cure ED?

Quick treatment options for ED include changes in lifestyle (eg. diet and exercise), therapy, medication, and surgery. We’re going to sound like a broken record here — but consult your doctor before applying a fix. The most important thing when curing ED is to identify what’s causing it. This will allow you to apply the most appropriate fix.

How long can the average man stay erect?

Erections usually last a few minutes up to half an hour (assuming no erectile drugs have been used). If you have an erection that lasts longer than this, talk to your doctor immediately or call your medical emergency line.

Conclusion

PIED is a tiny glimpse into the many harmful effects of porn. Luckily it’s treatable without any intrusive methods. You’ll have to steadily adopt positive habits that will heal your brain. Think of the healing process as a marathon, not a sprint.

Heavy porn use not only makes you dissatisfied with sex, but it causes disinterest in daily life.

Porn doesn’t need to take over your life.

A beautiful, wholesome life is so much better than being hunched over your computer screen looking for the next hit. Curing PIED takes work — but it’s so worth it. You and your partner can feel amazing in the bedroom again, and you can go on to live a fulfilling life.

And we’re not leaving our single guys in the dust either! Being free of PIED lets you reclaim the vitality and drive you desperately need to make impactful changes in your life.

Master yourself. Master your energy.

Mr. Mindblowing out.

We want to hear from YOU

Hey, you. That’s right. You reading this right now. Got questions? Want to add to the conversation? Leave a comment below.

Sumit is a chemical engineer and a motivational speaker. He is a regular contributor to MrMindBlowing.com.

Sumit


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