CBD for Erectile Dysfunction: Can it help?
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CBD for Erectile Dysfunction: Can it help?

If you have spent any time on natural health websites, you may have seen recommendations for cannabidiol or CBD to treat erectile dysfunction.

While there is currently no research showing that CBD is an effective treatment for erectile dysfunction, it could help treat anxiety that can contribute to erectile dysfunction and other sexual health issues.

Below, we explain what erectile dysfunction is, as well as the key factors that can make it hard for you to get or keep an erection.

We have also investigated the science behind CBD to find out how it can treat some sexual performance issues.

Finally, we have listed the available science-based treatment options if you are affected by erectile dysfunction.

CBD for Erectile Dysfunction: The Basics

  • Erectile dysfunction can be caused by various factors, from physical health problems to factors such as stress, anxiety, or the use of certain medications.
  • Most people with erectile dysfunction use medications such as sildenafil (the active ingredient in Viagra ®) to increase blood flow to the penis and treat erectile dysfunction.
  • Cannabidiol, or CBD, is widely available as an oil and many other products. Many are promoted as natural treatments for various ailments and health conditions.
  • Currently, no scientific research shows that CBD is an effective treatment for erectile dysfunction or a suitable telemedicine hormone replacement for medications such as sildenafil.
  • However, some research suggests that CBD may be an effective treatment for anxiety, which is occasionally a causative factor in erectile dysfunction.
  • If you have erectile dysfunction, it’s best to talk to a licensed health care provider about your treatment options before relying on something like CBD.

What is erectile dysfunction (ED)?

Erectile dysfunction is a common medical condition where you may find it difficult to develop or maintain an erection. You may have erectile dysfunction if:

  • You can have an erection but find it difficult to do so consistently when you want to have sex.
  • They can get an erection, but they can’t keep it long enough to enjoy sex
  • I can’t get an erection at all
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Erectile dysfunction can be caused by a variety of factors, ranging from physical health issues to psychological conditions, medications, and even certain habits and lifestyle factors.

Common physical causes of erectile dysfunction include high blood pressure, atherosclerosis (clogged arteries), type 2 diabetes, heart disease, multiple sclerosis, and physical health conditions that affect your penis, such as Peyronie’s disease.

Psychological causes of erectile dysfunction include anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, and guilt or concerns about sexual behavior.

Medications that can cause erectile dysfunction include antidepressants, antiandrogens, tranquilizers, and some medicines to treat high blood pressure.

Habits and lifestyle factors that can cause erectile dysfunction include smoking, drinking excessive amounts of alcohol, use of illicit drugs, lack of physical activity, and being overweight or obese.

Although erectile dysfunction becomes more common with age, it can affect men of all ages. A study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine found that about one in four men seeking help for erectile dysfunction is under forty.

Does CBD treat erectile dysfunction?

Search online for terms like CBD sex products, and you’ll find hundreds of CBD products like lubricants, massage oils, capsules, and love potions that claim to stimulate your sex drive, strengthen your erections, and improve your sexual performance.

Despite the promises made about certain CBD products, at this time, there is no reliable scientific evidence showing that CBD treats erectile dysfunction or improves sexual performance.

There is also no scientific evidence that CBD improves blood flow to your penis or affects the muscles or nerves involved in erections.

Most research on cannabis and sexual health is mixed, with different studies finding positive and negative effects on sexual performance.

For example, a scientific review published in the Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics found that cannabis and cannabinoids had a negative effect on sperm function and mixed effects on reproductive hormones in men.

On the other hand, a recent study published in Sexual Medicine found an association between the frequency of cannabis use and increased sexual function in men. Interestingly, the men in this study showed improved erectile function with cannabis use.

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The study authors note that the clinical significance is likely to be low, and selection bias may limit the generalizability of these findings.

There is also some evidence that cannabis use may increase activation in areas of the brain responsible for arousal. For example, a 2017 study found that cannabis use increased the activation of certain parts of the basal forebrain in people exposed to erotic photographs.

It is important to note that this research looked at the effects of cannabis as a whole, not specific cannabinoids like CBD. As such, their findings may not apply to products containing CBD or other isolated cannabinoids.

In general, there is not enough scientific research available to say for sure that CBD can treat erectile dysfunction or other sexual health problems.

CBD and sexual performance anxiety

One area where CBD can be helpful is in treating and managing anxiety, including sexual performance anxiety.

Sexual performance anxiety is a feeling of nervousness and anxiety that can occur before and during sexual intercourse. As we’ve covered in our guide to sexual performance anxiety and erectile dysfunction, sex-related anxiety can contribute to sexual performance issues, including erectile dysfunction.

While there is no research on CBD and sexual performance anxiety specifically, some studies on CBD have found that it may benefit from treating anxiety.

For example, a 2020 review published by the Journal of the American Pharmacists Association found that CBD showed promise as an alternative treatment for anxiety disorders, such as generalized anxiety disorder and social anxiety disorder.

However, as the Anxiety and Depression Association of America has pointed out, there is currently not enough evidence to say that CBD effectively treats anxiety.

CBD Safety and Side Effects

CBD products appear to be safe for most adults. However, there are side effects associated with cannabidiol and other cannabis products that you should be aware of if you are thinking of using CBD, whether for its potential impact on sexual performance or other effects.

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When taken orally, reported side effects of CBD to include drowsiness, dry mouth, nausea, lightheadedness, and reduced blood pressure levels.

There is currently limited information on the potential side effects of topical CBD-containing products. There is also little research on the safety and possible side effects of CBD products for people under the age of twenty-one.

In addition to potential safety concerns with CBD itself, it’s important to note that most CBD products are not subject to the same regulations as FDA-approved medications or even many dietary supplements.

How to treat erectile dysfunction

Although CBD has not been proven to treat erectile dysfunction, several safe, science-based treatments can improve your erectile health and sexual performance.

Currently, the most effective treatments for erectile dysfunction are PDE5 inhibitors. These work by increasing blood flow to the erectile tissue of your penis, allowing you to get an erection when you are sexually aroused easily.

Popular PDE5 inhibitors used to treat erectile dysfunction include:

  • The active ingredient in Viagra, AKA Generic Viagra, sildenafil, is a popular erectile dysfunction medication designed to relieve erectile dysfunction for about four hours.
  • Tadalafil. The active ingredient in Cialis ®, tadalafil, is a long-acting erectile dysfunction medication that remains effective for up to 36 hours.
  • The active ingredient in Levitra®, vardenafil, provides erectile dysfunction relief for four to eight hours per dose.
  • Available as Stendra ®, avanafil is a newer erectile dysfunction drug that works quickly and is less likely to cause certain side effects than older PDE5 inhibitors.

All medications for erectile dysfunction require a prescription. We offer a variety of FDA-approved erectile dysfunction medications online after consultation with a physician who will determine if a prescription is appropriate.

CBD for Erectile Dysfunction: Can it help?



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