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Premature Ejaculation: Symptoms, Types, Causes, and Treatment

Premature ejaculation is a term used for an orgasm before intercourse or less than a minute after you start. There is no set time when a man should ejaculate during sex. However, if you ejaculated and lose your erection this soon, you and your partner may feel less enjoyment which may affect your intimate time.

This condition is not a cause for concern if it does not happen often. However, you may need immediate medical help if:

  • You always ejaculate within 1 to 3 minutes of penetration
  • You are not able to delay ejaculation during sex all the time
  • You are distressed and frustrated
  • You tend to avoid sexual intimacy as a result of the condition

Signs and Symptoms of Premature Ejaculation

The main symptom of PE is not being able to delay ejaculation for more than three minutes after penetration. But it might occur in all sexual situations, even during masturbation. It is classified as a lifelong condition that occurs all or nearly all the time beginning with the first sexual encounter. This condition can also be acquired from previous sexual experiences without problems with ejaculation.

When to See A Doctor?

Talk with your healthcare provider if you ejaculate sooner every sexual encounter. This condition is treatable in most cases but your doctor may need to assess your condition before giving proper treatment.  A conversation with a care provider might help lessen concerns. 

Types of Premature Ejaculation

  1. Lifelong condition. Lifelong PE is when you have not had control of ejaculation from the time of your first sexual experience. If left untreated, premature ejaculation will continue for the rest of your life.
  2. Acquired. It is usually when there has been a period of normal functioning before premature ejaculation begins. It is often linked to psychological issues or problems with erection such as erectile dysfunction.

What Causes Premature Ejaculation?

man on gray shouting and having an anxiety episode

The specific cause of this condition is unknown but psychological triggers are considered a factor. This condition involves a complex interaction of psychological and biological factors such as:

  • Anxiety. It is common for this condition and anxiety to occur together due to sexual performance or related to other issues. Relationship problems can also contribute to premature ejaculation. 
  • Psychological causes. It includes sexual abuse, depression, poor body image, depression, and guilty feelings about sex performance.
  • Erectile dysfunction. Being anxious about achieving and maintaining an erection might form a pattern of rushing to ejaculate. The pattern can be difficult to change.
  • Stress. Emotional or mental tension in any area of life can play a role in PE. Stress can limit the ability to relax and focus during sex.
  • Biological causes. This includes irregular hormone levels, irregular levels of brain chemicals, and infection in the prostate or urethra.

Treatment and Management of Premature Ejaculation

Typical options for PE include a combination approach of behavioral techniques, medication, and counselling. It might take time to find the treatment or combination of treatments that work for you but these are all effective. Your doctor may also recommend avoiding sexual intercourse during the treatment period.

Man in white stretching on a field

Pelvic floor exercises can also delay ejaculation and help strengthen muscles. Focus on tightening only your pelvic floor muscles. Be careful not to flex the muscles in your abdomen, thighs or buttocks. Avoid holding your breath. Instead, breathe freely during the exercises.

Your healthcare provider might instruct you to use the pause-squeeze technique. Begin sexual activity to stimulate the penis, until you feel almost ready to ejaculate. Then squeeze the end of your penis where the head joins the shaft. Keep squeezing for several seconds until the urge to ejaculate passes. Repeat the squeeze process as needed.

Medication Used for Premature Ejaculation

Dapoxetine. It belongs to a class of drugs known as a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor. It works by inhibiting the neuronal reuptake of serotonin that further potentiates the action of neurotransmitters at both pre and postsynaptic receptors. It also reduces personal distress, and interpersonal difficulty and improves the satisfaction of sexual intercourse.

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