Premature Ejaculation (PE) is a condition that can affect men emotionally and physically and take a toll on their relationships. The most common way to describe this condition is an ejaculation that occurs before both partners would like it to. Intercourse plays a huge role in the success and happiness of a relationship and marriage. Over time, unresolved sexual problems can slowly chip away at this bond for both partners.
Effective communication is crucial to a healthy and long lasting relationship; however it can often be difficult for a man to discuss his premature ejaculation concerns. There is a lot of unnecessary shame that is associated with the condition and many men think that admitting they have problem makes them less of a man. More so than not, not talking about the problem is what actually makes it worse. Misunderstandings, hurt feelings, and anger can quickly escalate.
On an evolutionary level, intercourse promotes what scientists like to call “pair bonding.” During sex, and particularly during an orgasm, chemicals like oxytocin and dopamine are released; these chemicals help strengthen the bond between both partners. During this time, there is also an increased feeling of trust and security as well as an emotional attachment. These bonding emotions are crucial to the overall health and longevity of a relationship therefore when both partners miss out on these healthy bonding chemicals they are instead left with negative feelings of inadequacy and disappointment.
Premature ejaculation is a common condition and it is usually caused by a combination of an over sensitive glans penis (head of the penis) and nervousness and performance anxiety during sex. It affects 25- 40% of men in the United States. PE is more common in younger men and often resolves itself with increasing experience. During sex, anxiety plays a key role in PE. If he’s inexperienced and doesn’t know how to control his urges, he can also experience something called “short intravaginal ejaculatory latency time (IELT).” This means he ejaculates after a few thrusts and therefore might be dubbed a “two minute man” by his partner. This behavior can also trigger feelings of remorse in his partner and leave them to think that he is behaving selfishly and that she is merely a vehicle of his sexual pleasure.
Despite the high prevalence of PE, a study presented at the 2004 American Urological Association meeting revealed that only 50% of those affected by PE were distressed by their condition and out of the other 50%, only 12% sought out treatment for their condition. Due to the stressful nature of PE, men are not apt to discuss their issues and view PE as a sign of their masculinity. This may also prevent them from pursuing relationship.
But don’t give up. Some of the methods used to help erectile dysfunction, (like Viagra and injection therapy), can help. Medications used to treat depression like Zoloft and Paxil, (SSRI’s), can reduce the normal ejaculatory response and a new medication called Ristenza combines elements of SSRI’s and the active ingredient in Viagra and works for many men.