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Behind the Little Blue Pill: Debunking Myths About Viagra®

Viagra®, nicknamed the little blue pill, is a prescription to treat erectile dysfunction. It’s a well-known medication, but t

Viagra® might be one of the most recognizable prescription drugs in today’s world. Nicknamed the little blue pill, Viagra was originally developed for chest pain but is now prescribed to treat erectile dysfunction (ED).

Nearly half of men over the age of 40 have experienced ED. Common symptoms include the inability to get an erection or the inability to maintain an erection that’s strong enough for sex. It can be embarrassing to bring up at the doctor’s office, but it’s important to know that ED is a common and treatable medical condition.

Viagra is a pill that effectively increases blood flow to the penis, helping men who take it get and maintain erections that are hard enough for sex. It’s a well-known medication, but there are plenty of myths floating around about what Viagra does and doesn’t do. 

Eric Seaman, MD specializes in diagnosing and treating erectile dysfunction. Dr. Seaman and our team are here to help you find out if Viagra is right for you and what to expect if you get a prescription.

Myth #1: Viagra boosts your sex drive

A common cause of ED is low blood flow to the penis. Viagra addresses this cause by stimulating blood flow to maintain an erection hard enough for sex.

But sexual stimulation is a complex combination of physical stimulation, emotion, hormones, and other factors. Viagra doesn’t enhance your sex drive or libido. Instead, it helps your body maintain an erection after you’re already sexually aroused.

Myth #2: Viagra starts working instantly

Since Viagra isn’t an aphrodisiac, it doesn’t instantly produce an erection. It’s recommended that you take your prescribed dose of Viagra 30-60 minutes before sex, but you can take it up to four hours ahead. 

The benefits of Viagra may not develop after just taking it once. Dr. Seaman might recommend taking Viagra on up to eight separate occasions before deciding if the medication works for you.

Myth #3: Viagra produces erections that last for hours

When you take Viagra, your erection will go down after sexual intercourse. Viagra temporarily increases blood flow to the penis to help you get and maintain an erection with sexual stimulation. The effects will wear off, and you won’t have an erection after sex. 

In rare cases, Viagra has been linked to a condition called priapism. Priapism is an erection that lasts more than four hours and doesn’t go away. It’s a rare but serious medical condition that requires prompt medical treatment to prevent injury. 

Myth #4: Viagra is the only treatment option for ED

Viagra is a popular and effective treatment for ED, but it’s not the only option available. When you come to see us, Dr. Seaman works with you to evaluate your health and diagnose the cause of your ED.

He might prescribe an oral medication like Viagra, and he can help you find the right type of medication and dosage for your symptoms and lifestyle. In some cases, managing preexisting conditions like high blood pressure can help treat ED. Other treatments include lifestyle changes such as losing weight or quitting smoking.

Always take medication as prescribed. You should talk to Dr. Seaman about any existing health conditions that you have before taking Viagra, and you shouldn’t take it more than once a day.

If you think you might have ED, it’s time to do something about it. Make an appointment with Dr. Seaman to find out if Viagra could be right for you.

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