Erectile Dysfunction, or ED, is a general condition where a man is unable to attain or sustain an erection to involve in a pleasurable sexual encounter. Even though faced by approximately 30 million men in the US, it may exert stress on the relationship and add on the mental stress as well. You must have heard about Sildenafil (Viagra) as the most popular treatment for ED, however, with the world so obsessed with holistic and herbal living, there are so many non-prescription alternatives available claiming to be the solution for any sex-related issues. Out of all, CBD is the latest herbal treatment choice available with umpteen benefits.
ED – Causes & Traditional Treatment
Erectile Dysfunction is a condition affecting men where either no erection is attained, or when able to get an erection, are unable to sustain it for a prolonged duration to achieve pleasurable intimacy. Contrary to popular opinion, it is not a disorder that affects old people only. A study shows that nearly 1 in 4 men that complain of ED is younger than 40 years of age. It can occur due to many underlying causes which include physical as well as psychological conditions.
- Disorders affecting the cardiovascular system such as high blood pressure, atherosclerosis, or any heart disease may affect blood circulation to your penis, thus affecting the erection.
- People with diabetes (type 2) also complain of ED.
- Any physical condition directly associated with the groin region may cause ED as well.
- Depression & anxiety are also known to result in ED.
- Pressure to perform may cause guilt, concerns, or even low self-esteem, which in turn causes Erectile Dysfunction.
Other factors that may cause ED:
- Sedentary lifestyle with very low or no physical activity.
- Smoking or drinking alcohol in large amounts
- Substance abuse
- Medications such as antidepressants, tranquilizers, antiandrogens, drugs for the treatment of high blood pressure.
The usual treatment for ED is a prescription medication belonging to a class of PDE5 inhibitors such as the famous Viagra. The active ingredient in Viagra is Sildenafil Citrate and comes in different concentrations such as 50 mg, 100 mg, 120 mg, 150 mg, and 200 mg. The effects of Viagra 150 mg will last 4-5 hours. The duration of effects remains constant irrespective of the concentration being administered.
Cannabidiol or CBD is a herbal chemical compound that is extracted from industrial hemp plants also known as Cannabis sativa. This plant is different from other cannabis plants such as marijuana due to its less than 0.3% concentration of the psychoactive chemical THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), and bountiful CBD. CBD is extracted from the leaves, stems, and flowers of this plant, and doesn’t get you high.
It works by interacting with cannabinoid receptors of the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) of our body that is present throughout the central nervous system and various organs. It somehow directs ECS to make its endocannabinoids that take care of major bodily functions such as memory, immune response, sleep, mood, emotions, thinking, appetite, coordination of movements, perception of pain, inflammation, and so on. Research shows that the effect of CBD on the brain resembles the working mechanism of serotonin reuptake inhibitors, effectively used as antidepressants, thus managing the serotonin levels and helping with the management of depression & anxiety-related symptoms.[2,3]
It has been proven effective for the treatment of various ailments, with strong scientific data to support its use in the treatment of seizures in certain epilepsy disorders. Many studies have linked CBD use to improvement in pain & inflammation , diabetes, cardiovascular disorders [8,10,11], and obesity . A recent study shows CBD’s effectiveness in the alleviation of symptoms associated with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Yet another study hints at CBD not only decreasing behavioral effects of anxiety but also with physical symptoms as well.
Note: CBD is known to interact with other prescription medications, therefore, it is recommended to consult your doctor before using it.
CBD & Sex
The results of a study that found the presence of ECS receptors in the reproductive organs, led to many other kinds of research to understand the possible effects of cannabis on sexual health and performance.  Some studies suggest that heavy use of cannabis products may lower the libido, while others hint at the positive effects of CBD on libido. [13,2]
Can CBD make sex better? Well, kind of. CBD has a calming effect on your body, it soothes your nerves and jitters about the performance. CBD can work wonders for your sex life by increasing neurotransmitters and endorphins that result in a more pleasurable experience. So in a way, the effects of CBD on the underlying causes such as anxiety, vascular disorders, hormonal secretions, etc., may help you achieve a heightened sexual experience. The thing about CBD is, its effects are not the same for everyone. This is quite understandable as all of us have unique body chemistry – how it affects one person cannot be expected in another individual.
CBD for Erectile Dysfunction – The Truth
There is not enough scientific evidence to directly relate CBD with the treatment and/or improvement of erectile dysfunction. An article does relate the use of Cannabis sativa plants as an Ayurvedic treatment to improve conditions related to ejaculatory disorders and sexual performance-related issues. How it may help those suffering from ED, as per the experts is:
1. Easing Anxiety
There is substantial data available to allude that erectile dysfunction may be occurring because of anxiety disorder. CBD helps in the management of anxiety-related symptoms such as mood, stress, and nervousness, thus countering all the negative factors that may affect your libido.
2. Manage Obesity
CBD can help manage body weight, thus tackling obesity-induced ED effectively. Being overweight can impact the levels of testosterone, in turn affecting the ability to have firm erections. Obesity also affects the confidence level.
3. Improving Cardiovascular Health
CBD takes care of your cardiovascular system by strengthening it, which leads to improved blood circulation throughout the body. CBD has a vasodilation effect on arteries and veins leading to better blood flow, to attain a firm erection as well.
4, Balancing the Hormones
As CBD acts on the ECS, which in turn works to store homeostasis of the body, specifically the endocrine system, the hormone levels are restored.
Using Different CBD Products
Whenever you will search for CBD products, you will find new products being added to the CBD market every day. From edibles to topicals, you’ll find many options to choose from. But be sure to purchase from a reputable seller, and go through the ingredients to be sure what goes in them, if it can have any possible side effects for you.
- CBD edibles in the form of Gummies, Chocolates, Cakes, and whatnot!
- CBD oils and tinctures which are consumable
- CBD Vape Oils, if you enjoy vaping
- Topicals in form of lotions, aroma oils
- Even CBD Lube! Yes, you read it right.
How To Use CBD Oil For Erectile Dysfunction?
- CBD oil or tinctures can be used sublingually, as they are absorbed quickly this way, by taking a few drops under your tongue. Take it 15-30 minutes before the actual performance to help with anxiety and enhance the sensations.
When to consume edibles?
- Edibles need to be consumed at least an hour before the actual act, as the products will need to be metabolized in the stomach before CBD enters your system.
How to use topicals for enhanced sexual pleasure?
- CBD aroma oils or lotions can be used to massage the body and the penis as well in the foreplay.
- The effects of topicals take around 15-30 minutes to set in.
CBD Vape products
- Vaping a CBD product provides the most immediate effects, as the CBD is quickly transferred to the bloodstream from the lungs.
- Well, CBD lube is just like any other lube but with CBD, which helps prevent dryness to enhance pleasure during intercourse. CBD adds anti-inflammatory properties to the lube, which may prove beneficial.
- Ensure the ingredients before purchasing a lube. Some of them have alcohol which may result in skin irritation. Lube with sugars & glycerin has the potential to create a favorable environment for the growth of microbes.
CBD Oil & Viagra
With many people advocating the healthier effects of CBD oil in comparison with Viagra, the stress must be laid on the point that there still isn’t an ample amount of data to support the claim that CBD oil can help in the treatment of ED. Whereas Viagra is still the most popular treatment option used worldwide. The main concern people have with the use of Viagra is the side effects and association with cardiovascular disorders.
Other Medications For Treatment of ED
The other medications available to treat ED are orally administrable Tadalafil, Vardenafil, and Avanafil, and alprostadil injection. All these medications work by expanding the blood vessels of the penis, thus helping men to achieve a firm erection that lasts longer.
- Cialis is another popular medication belonging to PDE5 inhibitors. The effects of Cialis 5 mg last longer than that of Viagra 50 mg. Furthermore, the 5mg dose can be taken on a daily basis.
- Levitra 40 mg will last up to 5 hours and has fewer side effects than Viagra.
- Avanafil tablets are the newest medications that have a fast-acting nature. However, the doses for Avanafil are high – 100 mg and 200 mg.
- Alprostadil injections are also available that are administered directly into the penis, and effects are observed within 5-20 minutes.
So, Is CBD a Saving Grace?
Well, yes and no. CBD is being labeled a sex enhancer. But to call it a treatment option for ED? To be honest, there is no scientific evidence that links CBD directly with the treatment of erectile dysfunction. However, CBD may prove effective in managing psychological factors, promoting cardiovascular & endocrine health, improving diabetes-related effects, and help with weight loss. Therefore, indirectly relieving the underlying causes for ED. But these effects can vary from person to person, depending on their unique biochemistry.
CBD is a budding industry, with a lot of scope for research related to therapeutic uses. Until stronger evidence is made available, it is safe to say that traditional methods of treatment are still more reliable when it comes to ED.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Is CBD oil good for ED?
- Well, the effects of CBD largely depend on your body’s chemistry. CBD may help alleviate the underlying causes that lead to ED, but there is no scientific evidence directly linking CBD to ED treatment.
Q. How to apply CBD oil for erectile dysfunction?
- You can massage the CBD oil over and around the penis, as it helps with blood circulation.
Q. What type of CBD is good for ED?
- Usually, the full-spectrum products are considered the most potent as they have undergone the least amount of processing.
- CBD edibles are good options to consider for their discretionary use.
- If you are looking for immediate effects, CBD products for vaping, CBD oils & tinctures, and CBD topicals may prove effective.
Q. How to choose a good CBD for ED?
- Before ordering CBD products, check your state and local area laws to determine the legality status of CBD for your area.
- Research for the extraction process – experts say that CBD extracted by the CO2 extraction method yields high-quality products.
- Check the company for third-party testing for quality, potency, and residues.
- Check the online reviews.
- . https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32360935/
- . https://sites.oxy.edu/clint/physio/article/theendocannabinoidsystem.pdf
- . https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4651943/
- . https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4151601/
- . https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/cbd-and-other-medications-proceed-with-caution-2021011121743