10 Reasons Your Erection Might Not Cooperate

There are many factors that can produce a temporary inability to have strong erections, and the good news is you can do a lot about those factors through your lifestyle habits. Erectile dysfunction (ED) is a more chronic inability to have erections. It too can be related to lifestyle factors like excess weight and smoking. Most men can successfully treat ED with prescription medications like Viagra. 


The occasional inability to get a reliable erection isn’t the end of the world.

It really does happen to just about every man eventually, and the reasons are almost as variable as the male population. And just as sometimes the stock market or your pet cat behaves in a way for which there’s no discernible reason, erections occasionally won’t cooperate, and you don’t know why.

However, if you notice a change in your ability to achieve or maintain an erection, or if it’s more than just the odd occurrence, perhaps there is a reason behind it. All kinds of factors affect erection quality, and you’re bound to face one or more of them eventually. Here are 10 reasons why erections sometimes don’t cooperate.

1. Medication Side Effects

A number of medications, both over-the-counter and prescription, can take the wind out of your sails. Beta-blockers and other blood pressure medications have been known to affect erections, as have several types of antidepressants. Antihistamines and narcotics can also interfere with your ability to achieve or sustain an erection, so if you’ve suddenly started having trouble with erections, take a look in your medicine cabinet. The culprit could be hiding there.

2. You’re Over 60

Age alone doesn’t cause problems with erections, but erection problems are more common with age. With the years, poor health habits and chronic conditions catch up with people, so something that wouldn’t have slowed you down at 30 may be more of a problem at 60. Whereas around 4% of men in their 50s have persistent erection problems, that figure rises to 17% for men in their 60s, and up to 47% for men over age 75.

3. You’re a Heavy Smoker

Smoking constricts blood vessels, which is why it’s bad for your heart and lungs. But your circulatory system goes everywhere, including to your genitals, and constricted blood flow is the cause of many erection problems. In fact, medications that treat erectile dysfunction work by allowing the blood vessels to the penis to relax and open up enough for sufficient blood to flow in. If you need one more reason to kick the smoking habit, smoking’s effect on erection quality is as good a reason as any.

4. Too Much Alcohol

Alcohol is a double-edged sword. It can relax you and help you have the confidence to meet someone new, yet too much of it can make it difficult to have an erection. In fact, chronic alcohol overuse leads to chronic erection problems. For the occasional overindulgent evening, time is the cure. When alcohol use is chronic enough to cause persistent erection problems, it’s time for a serious talk with a medical professional, however.

5. You’re Sedentary or Overweight

Erection difficulties are often caused by insufficient circulation, and having a sedentary lifestyle that leads to excess weight gain can affect blood flow throughout the body. An Italian study from 2014 states that erectile dysfunction is a common complication of obesity, and furthermore, that obesity leads to lower testosterone levels, which can also affect erection quality. Losing excess weight isn’t just good for your confidence and overall health, it can improve erection health too.

Shedding excess weight and managing alcohol intake can improve erection quality.


6. You Have a Chronic Medical Condition

Chronic conditions like diabetes and heart disease are associated with increased risk of erection problems. Up to 60% of men with diabetes have problems with erections. While many men with chronic conditions can safely take medications like Viagra to treat erection problems, treating the underlying condition can also have a beneficial effect on erection quality. Take your doctor seriously when it comes to treating chronic diseases like diabetes and heart disease and your quality of life in the bedroom could improve as well.

7. You Have Clinical Depression

Clinical depression itself is notorious for sapping energy and sex drive. Adding insult to injury is that many antidepressant medications can make getting an erection more challenging. However, there’s good news: for some men, the medication side effect of erection difficulties goes away with time. Also, there are some antidepressants that are known to have little to no effect on sex drive, and you may be able to switch to one of these if you’re having problems.

8. Recreational Drug Use

Overuse of marijuana can lead to erection problems. The THC in marijuana interacts with the body’s endo-cannabinoid system, which has receptors throughout the body, including in the penis. When THC builds up in the body, it can interfere with proper functioning of these receptors and make erections more elusive. Opiates, amphetamines, and benzodiazepines can also interfere with good erection quality, so be aware of these risks as well as other risks of using drugs recreationally.

9. You’re Simply Too Tired

It is possible to be physically exhausted to where the flesh simply won’t cooperate. If you have a brutal schedule, lose sleep due to the demands of new parenthood, or have chronic insomnia, then you could discover that you have difficulty getting aroused and maintaining an erection. Rest is the solution, which is easier said than done in many cases. If possible, changing to a more regular work schedule, or giving up activities that are simply too much can bring relief.

10. You Have Erectile Dysfunction

Erectile dysfunction is a persistent inability to have or maintain erections sufficient for sexual activity. It affects millions of men, so you’re definitely not alone if you have this problem. Doctors have learned an incredible amount about the causes and treatments of erectile dysfunction over the past decade or so, and it’s no longer the taboo subject it once was. If you’re having persistent erection problems, talk to a doctor, because there are plenty of great options for treating erectile dysfunction today.


Problems with erections may or may not be due to erectile dysfunction. Men with erectile dysfunction have some great options today for treating the condition. Drugs like Viagra and Cialis have helped tens of millions of men worldwide address erection problems reliably and easily. At eDrugstore.com, we work with US-licensed pharmacists to dispense these medications at competitive prices, with attention to great customer service and quick, convenient delivery. eDrugstore.com is also dedicated to customer privacy and the highest standards for online security.

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