how to get harder erections

Is it not happy with how hard your erections get? You are not alone.

The key is to figure out if you are dealing with a one-off issue or if you are getting less than ideal erections. It could be caused by a health problem, a relationship issue, or something else.

A combination of talking with your partner, making lifestyle changes, and forming new habits may help.

Erectile dysfunction (ED) is a condition where a person with a penis is regularly unable to have or maintain an erection for the duration of a sexual encounter.

It is possible to lose an erection early in sex. It is not considered ED if it happens several times a week for 4 weeks or more.

If you are experiencing these symptoms frequently and over an extended period of time, ED may be the reason.

The most common cause of ED is a decrease in blood flow to the penis. Blood can flow into the penis during arousal, which causes it to become erection-inducing.

“If blood isn’t able to flow to the penis, it can cause an erection to be lost early, or reduce its overall hardness.”

Phosphodiesterase type 5 (PDE5) is an enzyme that can restrict blood flow. It’s often to blame when someone experiences ED.

This is why medications like Viagra and Cialis are so effective: They are both PDE5 inhibitors. By blocking or inhibiting PDE5, blood flow to the penis is improved.

The cause of ED is not always physical. Many factors can contribute to ED.

  • sudden changes to your routine
  • Increased stress in daily life.
  • Changes to diet or nutrition are significant.
  • Depression and mental health conditions.

If you think you are experiencing ED symptoms, it is a good idea to talk with a doctor. A doctor can rule out any other factors in your diagnosis.

Talking with your partner is the only way to communicate how you’re feeling and what you’re experiencing.

Use this time to discuss any issues you may have with your sex life.

Here are some tips to help have a good conversation.

  • Dissatisfaction with your sex life doesn’t necessarily mean dissatisfaction with your partner or relationship. Try to keep your mind from wandering toward extremes. Do your best to reassure your partner. A convo about your sex life likely doesn’t mean the end of this pairing; you may just need something new to spice things up.
  • Sexual behaviors are often learned from the media we consume. This includes both positive and negative depictions of sexual activity. Be aware that what you think sex is supposed to be may not be what you or your partner want.
  • Timing is important. This isn’t the time to multitask. You don’t want to risk making your partner feel unheard during a vulnerable conversation.

Try something new in the bedroom

Before you change anything, try to keep things fresh.

  • New positions. Raise your partner’s legs on your shoulders when you enter, do it from behind while lying on your side or with your partner on their hands and knees, or have your partner keep their legs closer together to tighten the vaginal canal or anal area.
  • Sex toys. Handheld vibrators, penis rings, butt plugs, and anal beads can be a fun way to stimulate the penis, clitoris, or anus. Make sure to use these items safely and clean them between usage.
  • Other forms of sexual contact. Use your mouths to build excitement, either on each other’s genitals or other erogenous areas.
  • Different entry points. In a heterosexual relationship and only tried vaginal sex? Ask your partner if they’re interested in trying anal or if they’re willing to peg you with a toy. Pro tip: Bring plenty of lube!
  • Role-playing. Set up a situation or act as characters to help build an arousing story around your sexual encounter.
  • Focus less on sexual performance. Instead, focus more on identifying what type of touch feels the most pleasurable to you.

Eat more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes

Blood flow throughout your body is improved by the vitamins and minerals in fruits, vegetables, and grains.

And blood flow to the penis is one of the keys to healthy, consistent erections.

Some foods may help.

  • Fruits high in antioxidants and anthocyanins, such as blueberries, can help protect body tissues and lower your risk of The The heart disease is very serious. is very serious., according to a 1993 study.
  • Foods dense with vitamin B12, such as fermented soy-based tempeh, can help support other bodily functions that contribute to erectile health, according to a 2019 study.
  • Foods with L-arginine, such as oatmeal, can help relax your muscles and Improve blood flow., according to a 2003 study.

Eat less fatty, fried, and processed foods

Eating a diet that’s high in fatty, fried, or processed foods may increase your risk of conditions that can affect your sexual health and overall well-being, according to a 1994 study.

These conditions are included.

You may find it useful.

  • High fat dairy products like yogurt and milk are better off being swapped for low fat versions.
  • You can use oats or whole grain cereals instead of processed ones.

If you are pressed for time, you may find it helpful to keep salad greens and other easy-to-prep vegetables and grains on hand.

Use simple whole foods like these to throw a quick, nutritious meal together, or even prep a meal or two in advance.

Consider the Mediterranean diet

Some 2017 research suggests the Mediterranean diet can help with several underlying factors that may contribute to erectile dysfunction (ED).

This diet may help.

  • lower cholesterol.
  • Increase the amount of anti-oxidants.
  • L-arginine levels should be increased.
  • Improve blood flow.

“If you don’t want to make the switch or want to gradually ease into it, start eating more of the following.”

  • vegetables like kale, spinach, and carrots
  • fruits like apples, bananas, and grapes
  • nuts and seeds like almonds, walnuts, and sunflower seeds
  • legumes like beans, lentils, and peanuts
  • tubers like potatoes and yams
  • poultry like chicken and turkey
  • Eggs.
  • dairy like cheese and Greek yogurt
  • healthy fats like extra-virgin olive oil and avocados

Cut back on your alcohol intake

Heavy alcohol consumption was associated with a higher risk of sexual dysfunction in a 2007 study.

One or two drinks typically won’t hurt. A 2018 review suggests it may even help lower your risk of erectile issues.

There is a direct correlation between how many drinks you have and how often you have issues with sexual performance.

Feel free to drink more caffeine

Love coffee or tea? Great! A 2005 review showed that caffeine may Improve blood flow. and relax the muscles that help you get and keep an erection.

Try to keep it to black coffee, unsweetened tea, and caffeinated drinks without sweeteners.

Get at least 20 minutes of moderate exercise every day

Some 2013 research suggests that physical inactivity can have a negative effect on erectile function.

Just 20 minutes of exercise per day can help improve your circulation and aid in weight management — two key factors in overall erectile health.

Take a short walk or jog, or do the following moves at home.

Watch how much time you spend cycling, though

Some 2015 research suggests the pressure put on the blood vessels and nerves in your pelvic area when biking can lead to ED.

There is more research that needs to be done to know if there is a connection.

If you bike a lot to work or just for fun, you should consider investing in a seat that takes some of the pressure off your perineum, where it can do the most damage.

Maintain a moderate weight

According to Harvard Medical School, having excess weight or obesity can affect your sex drive and increase your risk of conditions that affect your sexual health, including:

Eating a balanced diet and getting regular exercise are key.

Make sure you’re getting enough sleep

Not getting enough sleep, especially as a result of sleep apnea and other sleep disorders, has been linked in a 2005 study to an increased risk of ED.

A 2019 study suggests losing sleep can also make you more likely to develop plaque in your arteries, or atherosclerosis.

This can affect your circulation and make it more difficult to get and maintain an erection.

Here are some tips to make sure you get your 6 to 8 hours per night:

  • All screens should be turned off at least an hour before bed.
  • Coffee drinks should be avoided after 6 p.m.
  • Limit daytime naps to an hour or so.
  • Try to wake up at the same time each day.
  • Consider taking a melatonin supplement about 1 hour before bed.
  • Keep your bedroom at around 70°F (21°C).

Do what you can to minimize or better manage your stress

Research suggests that psychological factors like stress and anxiety are often the culprit behind ED.

Stress and anxiety can make you more likely to develop other conditions that have been linked to ED.

Try these tips to reduce stress:

  • Listen to music.
  • Light an aromatherapy candle or diffuse essential oils.
  • Keep a journal to write down your thoughts.
  • You can laugh with a funny movie.

Try to cut back your nicotine use

Nicotine and other chemicals in vaporizers, cigarettes, cigars, and other products can damage blood vessels and reduce the effectiveness of nitric oxide.

When you are erect, the blood vessels in your body open up, allowing it to flow more easily. It is more difficult to get and stay erect if it is not being aired out.

The earlier you quit, the lower your overall risk for developing ED.

Q: Why do I have a firm erection when I masturbate and not when I’m with a partner?

Masturbation is a solo activity. If you’re horny, you can probably get yourself to an orgasm without much help because you can focus entirely on the good feelings that come with pleasuring yourself.

But sex with another person brings in more complexity: both your and your partner’s moods, emotions, level of trust with each other, and levels of confidence. To reduce performance anxiety, focus more on discovering what’s most pleasurable to you versus on how well you’re sexually performing.

This is where communication is crucial. Openly discussing any anger, resentment, embarrassment, or unresolved conflicts can help maintain the trust and intimacy needed for a healthy sexual relationship.

If you frequently go to the doctor, make an appointment.

  • Concerns about the overall firmness of your erection.
  • unable to have an erection
  • “It’s stressed or concerned about your sexual performance.”

These could be symptoms of ED.

Low testosterone levels can also affect your sexual performance. See a doctor if you notice any of the following:

  • semen volume has been reduced.
  • Hair loss is abnormal.
  • There is persistent fatigue.
  • Difficultly concentrating.
  • Your memory is in trouble.
  • Losing strength.
  • abnormal fat buildup, especially in the chest (gynecomastia)

Your doctor can order some blood tests and recommend treatment, if needed. If you don’t already have a provider, our Healthline FindCare tool can help you connect to physicians in your area.

What causes a weak erection?

Weak erections can be caused by a number of factors. It is important to pay attention to what is happening in your world and think about how it might affect your sex life.

Why is my erection not as strong as it used to be?

It is very common to see a dip in sexual health as we get older. ED is more common in older males.

If you are concerned about the strength of your erections, it is worth talking to a doctor to rule out any physical health issues that may be contributing to a softer erection.

Your erection may be affected by overall arousal. It is worth considering any recent lifestyle changes that may affect your arousal.

  • Being under a lot of stress is a daily occurrence.
  • Being distracted by things outside of sex.
  • It feels less like you are attracted to your partner.
  • You are holding on to negative feelings for your partner.

How long can the average male stay erect?

It can be difficult to say exactly how long the average erection lasts. Many factors can contribute to the overall length of time.

The penis stops being erect after ejaculation, so the period of time for orgasm is shortened.

An erection can last much longer for people who have sex for a long time.

But, on average, an erection lasts for the length of a sexual encounter — around 7 to 13 minutes.

Viagra and Cialis allow blood to flow to the penis more easily, if someone has an erection. They can cause an erection.

However, if your erection lasts longer than 4 hours, get immediate medical attention. You may be experiencing priapism. This is a serious medical condition where blood is unable to flow out of the penis. It can cause severe or permanent damage if left untreated.

Can I get ED medications without seeing a doctor?

“You don’t need to talk with a doctor to get a prescription for Cialis or the generic, called tadalafil.”

Viagra and Levitra are two other prescriptions that are used for ED. These medications are not available for purchase.

If you meet with your doctor to discuss your symptoms, they will prescribe the right ED medication for you. You can also consider other options.

Hims: You’ll complete an online questionnaire and consult with a licensed medical professional in your state. They will evaluate you to determine which ED medication is right for you. The prescription will be shipped from a licensed pharmacy in discreet packaging to your home. Costs are not listed upfront on Hims’ website.

Lemonaid Health: You’ll complete an online questionnaire and consult with a licensed medical professional (a nurse practitioner or doctor) in your state. They will evaluate you to determine which ED medication is right for you. The prescription will be shipped from a licensed pharmacy in discreet packaging to your home. Lemonaid Health’s website has pricing for each type of ED medication, ranging from $50-$60 for the first order.

Roman: You’ll complete an online questionnaire and consult with a licensed medical professional in your state. They will evaluate you to determine which ED medication is right for you. The prescription will be shipped from a licensed pharmacy in discreet packaging to your home. Costs are not listed upfront on Roman’s website.

If you’ve already met with your doctor and would like to compare pharmacy options, GoodRx is available to help you search online to find cheaper pharmacy prices and also has coupons for many prescriptions.

What options do I have other than taking ED medication?

There are several options to treat erectile dysfunction aside from oral medications like Cialis, including:

If you still have erection issues after reviewing the suggestions we made, you should see your doctor. There are many options that can help manage your health.

Communication with your partner is important. There are a lot of ED solutions out there.