How Medication Can Help Men With Erectile Dysfunction
Sildenafil is a medication that stimulates blood flow to specific areas of the body and relaxes smooth muscles. Pharmacies sell this prescription medication under the brand name Viagra as a treatment for men suffering with erectile dysfunction. Users take it orally, as needed, usually 15 minutes to one hour before anticipated sexual activity.
This drug is a PDE5, or phosphodiesterase type 5, inhibitor. When the penis is stimulated, blood vessels dilate and blood flows to the organ causing an erection. Sildenafil inhibits the enzyme that counteracts this dilation. This allows men who take it to achieve and maintain an erection during sexual activity.
Erectile dysfunction occurs most frequently when the arteries supplying blood to the penis become too narrow. Sildenafil tablets are available in 25 mg, 50 mg and 100 mg strengths. A physician will often start a patient out with 50 mg tablets. Depending on the patient’s reaction, the doctor may adjust the strength accordingly.
Headaches are very common side effects associated with sildenafil use. Flushing, an upset stomach, indigestion, a stuffed up nose, and dizziness are other common negative effects reported by users. In some cases, the patient may experience blurred vision or a distortion of color. A physician can suggest medication to relieve headache pain. Other side effects typically do not last long and will resolve themselves. Men taking this type of medication should avoid drinking grapefruit juice because it contains a chemical that increases the amount of drug absorbed by the bloodstream and makes side effects more likely to occur.
Contrary to what some people believe, taking this medication alone will not cause the penis to become erect. The user must be sexually aroused to achieve an erection. Reaction time varies according to the individual, but many users report feeling an effect within 15 minutes of taking it. Individuals interested in trying this medication must get a prescription from a properly licensed physician.