ED Cream: Can a Cream Ease Your Erectile Dysfunction?

It’s common for men to deal with erectile dysfunction (ED) at least once or twice in their lives, but if this is an ongoing problem for you it’s time to get help. There are plenty of options available and, in many cases, effective treatment for erectile dysfunction is non-invasive and can be attained without a doctor’s prescription. ED creams—at least some variations of them—are an example of one type of treatment that doesn’t require a doctor’s approval.

ED creams are an alternative to oral drugs and many people prefer them because they are topical and still manage to give you an erection. There might also be fewer concerns about any type of topical cream interfering with other medications, as might be the case with oral medications. Your best bet is to speak to your doctor and find out if ED creams will affect any other medications you take.

Keep in mind, the FDA has not yet officially approved erectile dysfunction creams. Though many people have found them to be safe and effectivetreatment for erectile dysfunction, there is no official word on how effective—or safe—they really are. In some cases, the FDA has even issued health warnings about some ED creams, so it’s important to conduct research and make sure whatever product you choose has been made by a reputable company.

Despite these warnings and despite no official FDA approval, some ED creams have been approved for use in Europe and in Canada. One such option is alprostadil. It can be found in the United States in injectable solution or as a penile suppository but the cream has not yet been approved.

Alprostadil contains L-arginine. L-arginine is generally considered safe because it’s an amino acid naturally produced in the body. There are also a number of over-the-counter products that claim to contain L-arginine and many people have found these products to be extremely effective. There are no official studies confirming any L-arginine cream works but there is plenty of anecdotal evidence.

Why Would Men Prefer a Cream to the Pill?

There are many men who have tried Viagra and many have experienced success. Unfortunately, many have also experienced side effects. In one study in the United Kingdom, more than a third of men using Viagra had experienced side effects. Despite the side effects, nearly two-thirds continued using the pill because it helped them improve their sexual function.

 

If you’ve decided the pill is not for you because of side effects, ineffectiveness or other reasons, and you’ve determined with your doctor that your ED is not happening because of a serious health problem, topical erectile dysfunction cream might be right for you.

Why Would Men Prefer a Cream to the Pill

These types of topical cream are applied directly to the genitals and increase blood flow to the penis, so they tend to be fast-acting and trigger relatively few side effects. Any side effects that do occur tend to be in the area of the application so you might experience some redness, but it won’t disrupt your entire system, as oral medications tend to do when they aren’t right for you.

Proponents of these creams like them because they provide a non-invasive option to those men who cannot or do not want to use Viagra or other oral treatments for ED. They are also great for those who are squeamish about more invasive treatments, such as injections or surgery.

Why Are There Warnings?

If you’re considering using an erectile dysfunction cream, you probably have questions about why some people consider them dangerous. You might also be wondering why the FDA hasn’t moved to approve these products and has actually issued warnings about their safety.

Part of the problem is the transparency, or rather, the lack of it. Many of the products on the market do not include a list of ingredients so nobody really knows what’s added to them. There are cases when the ingredients cause side effects or interact with medication but people use the creams not even knowing what is in them. This is not recommended and if you’re going to use any product on your skin you should review the list of ingredients. This won’t absolutely prevent a reaction but it can tell you what to be wary of and give you an idea of what caused the problem. It can also help you avoid ingredients that will interact with other things you are taking.

All ED medications put users at risk, cream or otherwise. Some are safer than others but every medicine is a risk for at least part of the population. ED medications can cause a decrease in blood pressure or can trigger long-lasting and painful erections that require medical attention.

Also keep in mind, especially if you have concerns about medical coverage, that ED creams are unlikely to be covered by health insurance. They are not FDA approved and, even if they are, there are very few instances in which they’d be considered medically necessary. Though ED creams tend to be less expensive than some other treatment options, you still might need to consider the cost, especially for long-term use.

The best thing you can do before using any erectile dysfunction medication, topical or otherwise, is to have a discussion with your doctor. It might be uncomfortable or embarrassing for you, but it really is the best way to solve the problem and to ensure you don’t make the problem worse. Sadly, many men report experiencing problems for a year or more before bringing the issue to their doctor’s attention. ED can develop into secondary problems, such as depression and anxiety, and can create serious relationship issues—especially if you avoid dealing with them. It affects intimacy and trust and can turn a problem that is easy to fix into something that affects every facet of your life.

The last thing you want is to turn a temporary, resolvableerection problem into a full-blown medical crisis because you used a treatment that wasn’t right for you. Your doctor can review all of your options and offer solutions that are customized to your medical situation. They will also be able to discuss the side effects of medications with you and help you pick a treatment that is right for you.

Laura Day
 

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