All three of these male fertility health issues were once thought to be primarily a psycho-emotional dysfunction, but they are now also understood to be potential signs of physical dysfunction, an underlying health condition, or less common, a hormone imbalance (low levels of testosterone).
Exact causes of each are unknown and vary from man to man, but possible causes and contributors to male sexual dysfunction may be:
- relationship problems with a partner
- low levels of testosterone
- certain medications such as antidepressants and blood pressure medication
- certain health conditions like diabetes and stroke (and nerve damage from either or past surgeries), atherosclerosis, high blood pressure (hypertension), obesity and kidney problems
- smoking and alcoholism
Male Fertility Challenges – What Can Be Done to Help!
1. Low Libido
Libido is the word used for one’s desire for sexual satisfaction, one’s sex drive – without taking into account one’s desire for sexual activity. When libido is low, there is often lack of sexual desire and diminished sex drive.
2. Erectile Dysfunction (impotence)
According to Taber’s Cyclopedic Medical Dictionary (1997), impotence is defined as “a weakness, especially pertaining to the inability of a man to achieve or sustain an erection. An adult’s age has no specific etiological influence on sexual potency.” If an erection cannot occur or is not sustained, ejaculation cannot occur.
3. Premature Ejaculation
Premature ejaculation is when an orgasm or male climax occurs sooner than the male desires or too quickly during intercourse to satisfy a partner, leaving both parties unsatisfied.
What’s a Man To Do?
It is first and foremost going to be helpful to speak with a healthcare provider about any underlying health conditions leading to the issue and to pinpoint why this is happening. There may be a variety of herbs, nutritional supplements and mind/body therapies that can be used alone, or alongside other treatment options.*
The article Bringing Back Sensuality and Passion to Your Conception Efforts is definitely worth the read if sexual intercourse is no longer about the personal connection with your partner, but rather just about making a baby.
There are also a variety of medicinal herbs with reported male fertility health benefits such as:
- increased libido
- support for a healthy erection
- overall male fertility reproductive health
- hormone balance
- increased strength and stamina
- support for depression and anxiety contributing to, or due to sexual dysfunction
- support for a healthy stress response in the body
Some of our favorite herbs for these issues include:
- Maca root (Lepidium meyenii)
- Tribulus berry (Tribulus terrestris)
- American Ginseng root (Panax quinquefolius)
- Saw Palmetto berry (Serenoa repens)
- Yohimbe root (Pausinystalia yohimbe)
Don’t forget about the Brazilian herb Muira Puama too. After all it’s also referred to as “erection root” and “potency wood”. Oh my!
Before deciding to try out any herbs or nutritional supplements for these issues, it is extremely important to consider all aspects of health that may be involved as a potential or collective cause. Be sure to address any or all of the following:
- hormone levels
- daily stress management
- psycho-emotional wellbeing through counseling (individual or as a couple) or sexual therapy
- weight loss counseling should BMI levels be determined to be a contributing factor
- medical treatment to address any underlying health issue(s)
We Need to Change What We Expect of Men for Real Healing to Occur
Our society expects men to be virile and because of that we have an image in our mind that virility lasts forever, but this is a lot of pressure to put on men. We can’t expect what society tells us about male virility to be realistic, because it is not. There is a double standard out there. Just as women are told through societal pressure via media that we should look and act a certain way, so are men. Erectile dysfunction medication commercials come to my mind.
In order for a man to heal his fertility issues, he needs to feel supported, respected and allowed time to work through his health issues, just as any human being does. Men’s fertility issues are commonly a combination of both physical and psycho-emotional dysfunction. True healing can only occur when both are addressed and respected as real.
*Be sure to speak to your healthcare provider if you are interested in taking an herb or nutritional supplement and are also taking any prescription medication.
1. Anawalt, B., & Matsumoto, A. (Eds.). (2013, May 1). Decreased Libido. Retrieved February 6, 2015, from http://www.hormone.org/diseases-and-conditions/mens-health/decreased-libido
2. Barton, D. (n.d.). Muira Puama Shown to Increase Sexual Function in Men. Retrieved February 6, 2015, from http://natural-fertility-info.com/muira-puama-shown-to-increase-sexual-function-in-men.html
3. Erectile dysfunction. (n.d.). Retrieved February 6, 2015, from http://www.thefreedictionary.com/erectile dysfunction
4. Premature Ejaculation | Treatment. (n.d.). Retrieved February 6, 2015, from http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/diseases-conditions/premature-ejaculation/treatment.html
5. Rodriguez, H. (n.d.). Bringing Back Sensuality and Passion to Your Conception Efforts. Retrieved February 6, 2015, from http://natural-fertility-info.com/fertility-libido.html