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Psychological factors of erectile dysfunction

Mar 29, 2018
Paula Montgomery
Core Spirit member since Dec 24, 2020
Reading time 3 min.

Erectile dysfunction can be caused by many factors and among them the psychological factor is a very important one. This factor can cause erectile dysfunction problems in many people. In many cases, it is a secondary reaction to something physical. Doctors have also found that childhood abuse or sexual trauma can also cause psychological factors that result in erectile dysfunction.

Most commonly, the following psychological causes result in erectile dysfunction:


If you have too much stress in your life, it can cause erectile dysfunction. Stress may develop from different things. It may be related to your job, money, your family life, or anything else. Whatever is the reason for your stress, if you are stressed, you will not be able to perform at the desired level. It will make it difficult to get the necessary erection at the right point of time.


Anxiety is another psychological factor that causes erectile dysfunction. If you have anxiety, you may find it difficult to get an erection when you need it. It may also appear after you experience erectile dysfunction. When you experience erectile dysfunction, your anxiety will increase as you will be worried that the problem will reappear and you will not be able to perform. Such anxiety can cause “performance anxiety,” which is nothing but a fear of sexual failure. It will result in more and future occurrences of erectile dysfunction.


This is a very common cause of erectile dysfunction. Depression not only affects you psychologically but also physically. When you are depressed, your mind will not be in a condition to support you to have an erection. Even if you are comfortable in a situation, due to depression, you may not be able to perform. Some medicines, which are used for treatment of depression, are also linked with erectile dysfunction.


Guilt is a very strong psychological factor and it also causes problems with your sex life. Whether you are feeling guilty that you are not able to satisfy your partner or due to some other reasons, you will not be able to get erection with this feeling. The feeling of guilt will further degrade your performance.

Low self-esteem

Besides causing several other psychological and behavioral problems, low self-esteem can also cause erectile dysfunction. If you have previously experienced erectile dysfunction, you may have a feeling of inadequacy, and in that case, you will not be able to perform in future as well. Low self-esteem means low confidence and therefore, you will be unable to perform confidently and that may make the situation more complex. Low self-esteem caused by other issues unrelated to your performance in bed can also result in erectile dysfunction.


This is generally seen in the case of older people and only in few cases of younger people. Due to age and other factors, you may lose interest in sex. This loss of interest may occur due to some medicines or some relationship problems; however, when it happens, there will be issues of erectile dysfunction.

People experience erectile dysfunction at one time or another in their life; you need not worry about that as it is normal. However, if it occurs more than half of the time or is persistent, only then will you need to worry about erectile dysfunction. If it is causing psychological issues, such as distress for you and your partner, you should immediately consult a doctor and get the problem rectified.

What can be done to overcome psychological erectile dysfunction?

For psychological factors of erectile dysfunction, you may need to undergo therapy with a sex therapist which may include cognitive behavioral therapy and other types of psychological therapy.

Another form of treatment that has been known to be effective and can be performed alone at home is guided imagery.

by Doctoripster

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