However, given the amount of men worldwide who suffer from erectile problems, the 10 or 20% who cannot obtain an erection because of psychological problems equates to hundreds of thousands of cases.
Due to the emphasis on physical problems, the psychological issues are given far less prominence.
As I have said psychological factors are responsible for about 10%-20% of all cases of erectile dysfunction, or ED. It can also be a secondary reaction to an underlying physical cause.
In some cases, the psychological effects of erectile dysfunction may originate from childhood abuse or sexual trauma, particularly if a negative experience occurred at the start of sexual activity. However, the most common psychological causes of ED include:
PERFORMANCE ANXIETY: Once a man has a negative problem with erectile ability he may become obsessively worried that the problem will reoccur. This leads to “performance anxiety” or a fear of sexual failure. This can be very difficult to overcome. A sympathetic partner is essential as any criticism; however mild perpetuates & exacerbates the problem. In my Clinical Practice I have found that hypnotherapy can be very helpful to many men. With deeper issues specific psychological counseling may be required.
STRESS: Stress, is without doubt the cause of many serious illnesses & is known in extreme case as ‘the silent killer’. Given the times we live in, stress may be related to relationships issues, financial issues, body image issues, employment issues, etc. The list of stress inducers is almost endless.
GUILT: A man may feel guilty that he is not satisfying his partner as others may have done. In this instance he may distance himself from his partner as he may feel ‘not good enough’. This is also tied to low self-esteem issues.
LOW SELF-ESTEEM: This can be a result of many factors such as body image, penis envy, previous occurrences of erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation, criticism (not only sexual), etc. It is closely tied to performance anxiety & stress.
DEPRESSION: This is a very common cause of ED, depression affects a person physically and psychologically. Depression can cause ED even when a man is completely relaxed with sexual encounters. Certain prescriptive drugs to treat depression may also cause ED.
INDIFFERENCE / HOSTILITY: This may surface as a result of ageing and the resultant loss of interest in sex. It may also stem from problems in a couple’s relationship. Suppressed hostile feelings can create ED within a relationship. What better non-verbal way to tell your partner ‘I don’t want you’ by being unable to get an erection within a sexual encounter with them.
All of these conditions are treatable without too much drama in most cases.