Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD, is a condition that partially narrows the airways, restricting breath. It’s a broad term that applies to a variety of lung disorders like bronchitis and emphysema. Symptoms of COPD affect a person’s ability to breathe normally and often cause shortness of breath, wheezing, and pressure in the chest. Complications can extend to different parts of the body and cause fatigue, leg swelling, bulging veins, along with internal inflammation.
COPD is the 4th-leading cause of deaths around the world, making it just as deadly as lung cancer. While women are diagnosed at higher rates than men, it’s a disorder that can cause undesirable side effects in males including low testosterone and erectile dysfunction. While COPD has no cure, there are solutions to lessen side effects. We’ll be covering ways to reduce COPD symptoms and its potential complications, including ED.
What are COPD causes?
There are many risk factors for COPD but by far, the most prevalent is smoking. Male smokers are 12 times more likely to die from COPD than nonsmokers. Even though smoking accounts for 80 percent of all COPD deaths, other risk factors like secondhand smoke, respiratory infection history, air pollution and family history are contributors as well.
How does COPD affect sexual health?
Those with COPD can have difficulty maintaining a happy sex life. COPD has a serious effect on breathing. When it comes to a physical activity like sex, coughing or weezing can extinguish passionate moments quickly. Another sex complication can come from COPD medications. Many of the pills prescribed by doctors are steroid-based; steroids are particularly problematic for men because they can lead to lowered testosterone levels, and lowered libido.
When it comes to ED specifically, it’s estimated that more than 75% of men with COPD will experience sexual dysfunction. If left untreated, COPD symptoms worsen over time. Higher rates of ED were found in men with advanced COPD cases.
What are possible COPD treatments?
As mentioned above, COPD has no cure. However, diagnosing it in its early stages can prevent the progression of unwanted symptoms. If a man is a smoker, it’s highly recommended that he quit immediately. Quitting smoking is the most effective way to improve lung health. Fitness is also a crucial part; it’s never too late to incorporate a physical fitness routine, as studies show middle-aged men with higher rates of heart-lung fitness have reduced chances of developing or dying from COPD.
When it comes to enjoying a better sex life, it’s recommended to schedule sex whenever the partner diagnosed with COPD feels more energetic. Are they a night owl or an early bird? This distinction can help avoid fatigue during sex. Experimenting with different positions can also be helpful. Avoid sex positions that place pressure on the chest, like missionary. Try seated positions or utilizing pillows to prop up the body in more comfortable positions. Giddy’s wearable device is also a new ED treatment option. It’s an FDA Registered Class II medical device that doesn’t need a prescription, and was engineered specifically to help men achieve and maintain an erection. More information about this ED treatment is here.
When dealing with COPD or the suspicion of COPD, it’s important to receive a proper diagnosis, and understand your treatment options. There are effective steps that a person with COPD can take to maintain their quality of life. Giddy strongly encourages anyone experiencing difficulty breathing to speak with their doctors about their symptoms.
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