Alcohol and Erectile Dysfunction: The Facts

Sure, alcohol might give you a boost of self confidence to jump in the sack, but once you’re there it can quickly have the opposite effect.

Yep, we’re talking whiskey dick. While that extra beer may encourage you to test your new dirty talk skills, when it comes to down below… Well, it’s a total flop.

You may be feeling suave, but in reality, alcohol can actually have the opposite effect as your blood alcohol level increases. Drinking heavily can dampen your mood, lower your desire to get down and dirty and make it incredibly difficult to get hard.

While I’m not saying every drop of alcohol will cause your dick to flop, there’s a high chance you’ll fail to deliver while under the influence. Going a little hard on alcohol is a common cause of erectile dysfunction (ED).

But before you go emptying your liquor down the drain in a panic at never getting hard again – think moderation, instead! According to the U.S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), moderate alcohol consumption is no more than two drinks a day for men.

After all, there’s only a certain amount of alcohol your liver can break down each hour, and it equals around one standard-size drink. When you regularly drink a lot more, there’s potential for toxins to build up in your system. This in turn will affect your organs – and one very important one in particular.

So before you go ordering a round of shots, here’s why you should consider cutting back not knocking back those extra drinks.

How does alcohol affect erectile dysfunction?

For many men, heavy drinking can impact their ability to perform in the bedroom. Here we take a look at the links between alcohol and erectile dysfunction, and how a few too many can cause havoc with your sex life.

Short-term erectile dysfunction (whiskey dick)

Research suggests that too much booze can affect your brain and your nether regions. While a little alcohol can help with your self-confidence and smooth talk ability, achieving a hard on is another thing.

One study by the University of Washington showed that sober men were able to get hard much faster than those that were intoxicated – with some unable to get it up at all after alcohol.

Without going full-on biology lesson here, we all know that optimal blood flow to your penis is required to get an erection. So when you’re boozing it up pre-sex, that blood flow is decreased. For some men this may mean a less intense climax. For others it may result in less sexual satisfaction… And that’s if you can get it up in the first place.

Sorry lads, whiskey dick is real.

Also Read: What Are The Early Signs of Erectile Dysfunction?

Alcohol and erectile dysfunction long-term

Misusing alcohol long-term can have a significant impact on your overall health – hard ons included. While the occasional boozing session may result in one night of whiskey dick, doing this long-term can lead to ongoing erectile dysfunction.

For those relying on alcohol, one study showed the chance of suffering from issues in the bedroom sits between 60 and 70%. These sexual issues are most commonly erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation and a lack of libido.

Wrecked relationships

As well as damaging your health, alcohol consumption beyond moderation is also commonly associated with relationship issues. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, these issues can include:

  • Conflict
  • Infidelity
  • Economic insecurity
  • Divorce

Alongside this, 90% of all sexual assaults involve alcohol consumption.

Also Read: How To Prevent Erectile Dysfunction (ED)

Social smoking and your sex life

It’s a common habit to light up during a drinking session. If you’re a social smoker, you could be increasing your chances of ED even further. For those under 40, smoking is the biggest cause of erectile dysfunction.

Studies have also shown that men who smoke more than 10 cigarettes daily are at increased risk of ED.

Sexual encounters and alcohol

While the extra beer or two might give you that boost of confidence to get down and dirty, the combination of sex and alcohol isn’t always a good thing. Studies have shown that almost 50% of unplanned sexual encounters involve booze – with 60% of STDs transmitted when alcohol is involved.

Drinking in moderation

The way that alcohol relaxes us and often mellows our mood has made a drink or two a go-to for some 10,000 years. While some studies show that alcohol – in moderation – can be good for heart health and circulation, finding the balance can be tricky.

If you’ve noticed a lack of sex drive, premature ejaculation, relationship issues or troubles getting hard because of alcohol, you may be letting alcohol take over your sex life.

Aside from cutting back on alcohol and avoiding erectile dysfunction, there are other things you can do to prevent ED.

Looking for ways to prevent ED?

While erectile dysfunction is common for many men midlife, there are ways to prevent and improve erectile function.

So, aside from limiting alcohol consumption (and whiskey dick) – what can you do?

Lifestyle improvements

Research has shown that improving elements of your lifestyle can have a positive impact on your erectile function. One study of Australian men between 35 and 80 reported nearly a third showed erectile issues over a five-year period.

The same study showed improvements in 29% of the male participants, suggesting that lifestyle factors can be controlled – working to reverse ED.

Improve heart health

We all know that health blood flow leads to solid erections. Poor heart health can impact your body’s ability to deliver blood around the body – leading to erectile issues.

One 2004 study focusing on 25 male participants showed that heart disease risk factors predicted which men would suffer from ED in the future. When it comes to heart health, there are four key areas associated with future risk of ED.

  • Alcohol. As we previously mentioned, alcohol and erectile dysfunction can go hand in hand. Heavy drinkers are more likely to experience ED. If that’s you, it may be time to cut back.
  • Smoking. Whether you smoke everyday or you’re a social smoker, quitting can help prevent ED.
  • Weight. Losing weight can put less strain on your heart, helping your body stay healthy. One study found that overweight men with ED improved erectile function by losing weight.
  • Exercise. We all know that exercise is good for us. When you combine regular exercise with a healthy diet, erectile function can be improved according to studies.

If you’re looking for ways to improve erectile dysfunction, these risk factors can be a great place to start.

Get enough sleep

When you’re tired and grouchy, your sexual performance can take a nosedive. Getting enough restful sleep can help you feel on top of your game. For those with interrupted sleep – or sleep apnea – one study showed that using a CPAP breathing machine improve erectile function.

Boost your testosterone levels

If your testosterone levels are a little low, there’s a high chance you’ll experience erectile dysfunction. However, there are natural ways to increase your T levels:

  • Lose weight
  • Reduce stress
  • Regular exercise

Change your bike seat

If you regularly cycle, there’s a chance your bike seat is putting pressure on your nether regions. Although there is plenty of room for more research, some studies have linked cycling to ED. If you frequently cycle, or cycle long distances, ensure your seat is comfortable to avoid putting pressure on your perineum.

Have sex more

Terrible right? Having sex more regularly has been shown to reduce the risk of ED. And who doesn’t want to get down and dirty more often!

Psychological factors and ED

As well as physical factors, psychological worries can be at the root of ED. Performance anxiety, relationship issues, anxiety and depression can all have an impact.

Healthy relationships

One of the best ways to overcome erectile issues is talking to your partner! When you’re worried about performing, the anxiety surrounding ED alone can cause you to fall flat. Not feeling satisfied in an intimate relationship can negatively impact your sex drive, but again, talking over any problems is key.

Just remember, erectile dysfunction isn’t anyone’s fault, so don’t try to place blame. Instead, try to spend some time exploring one another’s bodies and take it slow.

Mental health

When you’re feeling anxious, stressed or depressed, ED is very common. Where possible, try practicing mindfulness meditation, yoga and exercise regularly to reduce stress/anxiety. If you feel as though there’s a deeper-rooted issue, try see a therapist or medical professional for more advice.

Medication is available to help anxiety and depression, although it is worth bearing in mind that some medications can impact sexual function.

Medical issues

Some medical causes of erectile dysfunction are hard to reverse, such as:

  • Low blood flow. For some, erectile issues are caused by low blood flow to the pelvic area. This – as we all know – is needed to get hard. If you’re experiencing this, it might be worth trying our 100% natural formula which can help you get and maintain an erection.
  • Nerve damage. This is common in men who have had their prostate glands removed due to cancer. However, careful “nerve sparing” won’t prevent ED entirely. In this case, many men use ED medications.
  • Parkinson’s disease. Studies have shown that between 70 and 80% of men with Parkinson’s experience erectile issues, as well as low sex drive, premature ejaculation and the inability to orgasm.
  • Peyronie’s disease. This condition causes extreme curving of the penis, making intercourse incredibly painful or impossible entirely.

Keep an eye on your meds

It may be that a change in medication has caused your erectile issues. Some of the most common culprits can be antidepressants and thiazide – a drug used to encourage your body to lose water to lower blood pressure.

If you’ve recently started or changed medication, speak to your GP as it can be a common side effect.


Erectile dysfunction issues are incredibly common, and not just when alcohol is involved. There are plenty of opportunities to prevent and reverse the effects of ED.

If you’re fed up of wishing for things to change, why not try MaleExtra? Our 100% natural and proven formula can help you achieve harder, stronger hard ons that’ll keep you pounding away for hours.

It’s time to rocket your performance in the bedroom!

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