Impotence is a condition that consistently affects a person’s ability to achieve or maintain an erection, or ability to achieve ejaculation. It’s a form of erectile dysfunction (ED).
There can be several contributing factors for impotence. These include both emotional and physical disorders. According to The Merck Manual, an estimated 50 percent of men ages 40 to 70 experience some ED at one time or another. The risk of impotence increases with age.
1. Endocrine Diseases
The body’s endocrine system produces hormones that regulate metabolism, sexual function, reproduction, mood, and much more.
2. Neurological and Nerve Disorders
Several neurologic conditions can increase the risk for impotence. Nerve conditions affect the brain’s ability to communicate with the reproductive system. This can prevent a person from achieving an erection.
3. Taking Medications
Taking certain medications can affect blood flow, which can lead to ED. A person should never stop taking a medicine without their doctor’s permission, even if it’s known to cause impotence.
4. Cardiac-Related Conditions
Conditions that affect the heart and its ability to pump blood well can cause impotence. Without enough blood flow to the penis, a person can’t achieve an erection.
5. Lifestyle Factors and Emotional Disorders
To achieve an erection, a person must first go through what’s known as an excitement phase. This phase can be an emotional response. If a person has an emotional disorder, this affects their ability to become sexually excited.
6. Tobacco use
7. Alcoholism and other forms of substance abuse
8. Sleep disorders
9. Treatments for prostate cancer or enlarged prostate
10. Surgeries or injuries that affect the pelvic area or spinal cord