Understanding Psychological ED: Definition and Top Reasons

Psychological ED

Anxiety that’s related to sexual performance and erectile dysfunction are the most commonly known male sexual problems.

Studies from all over the world have given clear evidence that 20% of issues related to ED are indeed psychological.

Although there are numerous reasons for the psychological origin of ED, the most common causes are a history of negative past sexual experience, depression, relationship issues and being in a stressful environment.

The article is a part of our comprehensive series on Erectile Dysfunction

How to determine whether Erectile Dysfunction is psychological or physical?

In most cases, men are unaware that ED can also be caused due to various psychological issues. This factor can also complement multiple other physiological causes of ED.

If you doubt that your ED is due to psychological factors, the best thing to do is consult with a medical professional that’s well versed in Men’s Healthologist.

Your sexologist will review your past medical history, conduct some blood tests and even make you undergo a physical examination to find out the real reason behind your ED.

A medical professional might ask you some questions on your ability to retain an erection, achieve an orgasm and your satisfaction level. They will conclude the reason for your ED based on the lab test results and your answer to their questions after.

Additionally, you could also do an easy self-analysis by trying to answer the following questions:

  1. Do you experience erection in the morning?
  2. How frequently do you have erections?
  3. Do you have anxiety before undergoing sexual intercourse?
  4. Are you in any form of stress due to work or personal issues?

If most of your answers to the above questions are YES, there is a  possibility of your ED being due to an underlying psychological issue.

Different psychological reasons for ED

Let us understand the various psychological reasons for ED.

1. Depression

This silent killer is one of the significant reasons for psychological erectile dysfunction. Various hormonal and chemical issues cause depression.

Many men dismiss symptoms of depression as some sort of sadness. However, depression can turn out to be a severe issue if left unattended.

Photo by Andrew Neel from Pexels

At times it can feel like a heavy anchor weighing down both the body and mind. Depression can affect both the physical and mental aspects of life as well.

If you are someone suffering from depression, then the chances are high that you might be experiencing ED regularly or occasionally.

Fortunately, there are proven treatment options to curb the issue, and you can successfully get out of the problem after undergoing treatment.

2. Anxiety

Sexual performance anxiety results from a person’s negative mindset of their ability to perform well during sex. 

Some of the factors that cause anxiety include: 

  • Size of the penis
  • Relationship issues
  • Body image
  • Understanding gender roles

Anxiety also directly influences various functions such as blood circulation, heartbeat, functioning of internal organs, etc. Impact on any of these could also negatively impact sexual performance.

This can also happen if you are worried excessively about pleasing your partner, achieving an erection or ejaculating too early.

3. Low self-esteem

Low self-esteem is another critical reason for causing erectile dysfunction. Men who are worried about not satisfying their partners get burdened with excessive guilt and might end up losing their self-esteem.

Low self-esteem can result in long term aversion to any sexual activity.

Advancements in medical technology in the last decade have brought forth various counselling and treatment options to boost men’s self-esteem. However, if the problem is much worse, they might take certain medications to positively impact their sexual function.

Click to check the list of ED medications available at Andsons Singapore. 

4. Stress

This is another prominent factor that affects sexual performance in men. Being excessively stressed could interrupt your brain from sending the right signals to your penis to allow extra blood flow to achieve an erection.

5. Addiciton to pornography

Men who spend too much time on pornographic literature might end up developing fancy ideas about relationships.

In most cases, the sufferer cannot identify the problem and requires medical assistance.

In scientific terms, this is known as PIED( pornography-induced erectile dysfunction).

6. Issues relating to relationships

Unknown to many, having relationship issues can result in erectile dysfunction. If you regularly have troubled relationships with your partner, frequent arguments, and poor communication, it can negatively impact your healthy sexual function.

Photo by Vera Arsic from Pexels

One of the significant steps in resolving this issue is to develop healthy communication with your partner. You can also seek the help of a relationship advisor if you feel that you cannot handle the problem.

Contact us at andSons Singapore to get evaluated for a suitable treatment plan.


F Hedon(15 April 2003)Anxiety and erectile dysfunction: a global approach to ED enhances results and quality of life, Available at https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12825100/[Accessed 19 Sep 2021]

Brian Y. Park,Gary Wilson,Jonathan Berger,Matthew Christman,Bryn Reina,Frank Bishop,Warren P. Klam,and Andrew P. Doan(6 Sep 2016)Is Internet Pornography Causing Sexual Dysfunctions? A Review with Clinical Reports, Available at https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12825100/[Accessed 19 Sep 2021]

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