Vaping: Health Dangers and Hazard

Vaping is the term often used to describe the use of an electronic nicotine delivery system, or ENDS, including electronic cigarettes, or e-cigarettes, vape pens or vaporizers. These battery-operated devices heat a liquid solution — usually, but not always, containing nicotine — to turn it into a vapor that can be inhaled. If the base nicotine mixture isn’t palatable, flavors like mint, apple and cotton candy, can be added that make vaping attractive, especially to adolescents. E-cigarettes can resemble a pen or USB flash drive, and may be disposable after one use or have rechargeable systems.

Unfortunately, today’s teens, and even tweens, know more about vaping than their parents. First publicized as a safer alternative to smoking tobacco, vaping caught on because it didn’t contain the carcinogens or tars found in most smoking tobacco products. Also, vaping was supposed to eliminate the dangers of secondhand smoke to those nearby.

It all sounded pretty harmless in theory. However, those theories were wrong.

Here are the dangers associated with vaping:

No matter the delivery method, nicotine is addictive.

Studies have shown that it may be harder to quit a nicotine addiction than a heroin addiction. Most discussions about helping teens stop vaping fail to address that they already may be addicted. In many cases, teens at this phase may a need replacement option or medications, such as bupropion, to help curb the nicotine cravings that can be overwhelming.

If you’ve ever tried to quit smoking or had friends or family members try to quit, you know how difficult it can be. That’s why, in certain situations, e-cigarettes still are considered an option to help someone who has smoked tobacco for years to become a nonsmoker.

The flavors and stabilizers in e-cigarettes can cause unknown inflammation to delicate lung tissue.

All one has to do is turn on the national news to hear about more and more teens who suffered severe — sometimes irreversible — damage to the lungs, and in extreme cases have died as a result of vaping. Adolescents often believe that bad things happen to everyone else, but the risks associated with vaping are real.

Many teens are taking vaping a step further, adding cannabis, CBD oils and other dangerous additives. When patients go to the emergency department in respiratory distress from vaping, it’s challenging for healthcare professionals to treat them due to the difficulty in correctly identifying what they inhaled, especially when they are intubated or unconscious.

The length of time spent vaping can be much longer than smoking a standard cigarette.

Did you know that it takes two to five minutes to smoke most cigarettes? On the other hand, e-cigarettes can last up to 20 minutes, delivering more nicotine and damaging chemicals to the lungs. In addition, some vaping mixtures can contain 20 times the nicotine in a single cigarette.

Brain development can be affected.

Nicotine can affect concentration, learning, memory and brain development, according to information and data from a new report from the surgeon general. Also, nicotine use in young adults can still lead to other illicit substance use.

People under 21 can’t buy tobacco products, including vape products, under federal law.

Talk about the dangers of vaping

Talk with your kids about the dangers of vaping, but also look for warning signs including:

  • Changes in emotions or new behaviors like secrecy
  • Dry cough or wheezing
  • Scents of fruity odors on skin, breath and clothes
  • Strange cylinders, chargers or batteries lying around
  • Trouble sleeping

Remember, it’s essential to have conversations rather than suspicions and accusations. Encourage your teen to look into the warnings and media stories related to vaping or contact their healthcare team with questions.

Skin Care Tips Recommendation by Dermatologists

 

Below are seven skin care tips that dermatologists recommend to all  patients—and actually use themselves.

However first, take some time to identify and understand your skin type:

  • Sensitive skin may sting or burn after product use
  • Normal skin is clear and not sensitive
  • Dry skin is flaky, itchy or rough
  • Oily skin is shiny and greasy
  • Combination skin is dry in some areas and oily in others

Understanding your skin type will help you learn how to take care of your skin and select skin care products that are right for you.

To maintain healthy skin, dermatologists recommend the following tips:

  1. Wear sunscreen daily. Sunscreen is one of the single most important things you can do for your skin. When applied correctly, sunscreen protects your skin against the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays, which cause sunburn, skin cancer, and premature skin aging, like wrinkles and age spots. For the best protection, apply a broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher to all skin not covered by clothing, and reapply every two hours or after swimming or sweating. To save time in your skin care routine, you can consider using a moisturizer that also contains sunscreen. However, while cosmetics that contain sunscreen are convenient, remember to reapply them in order to achieve the best sun protection. Keep in mind that since no sunscreen can block 100% of the sun’s UV rays, it’s also important to seek shade and wear sun-protective clothing when outdoors, including a ligthweight long-sleeved shirt, pants, a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses with UV protection, when possible. For more effective sun protection select clothing with an ultraviolet protection factor (UPF) label.
  2. Stay out of tanning beds. Just like the sun, tanning beds emit harmful UV radiation that causes skin cancer. In fact, even one indoor tanning session can increase your risk of developing melanoma by 20%, squamous cell carcinoma by 67% and basal cell carcinoma by 29%. If you want that golden glow, achieve it with self-tanning products instead. When applied correctly, self-tanners look natural and won’t give you orange skin, streaks or splotches.
  3. Simplify your skin care routine. Less is more when it comes to skin care. Using too many products, especially multiple anti-aging products, can irritate your skin. Instead, focus on the basics, such as a gentle cleanser, sunscreen, and moisturizer. Establish morning and nighttime skin care routines that work well for your skin, and stick with them.
  4. Choose skin care products formulated for your skin type. Understanding your skin type will help you learn how to take care of your skin and select skin care products that are right for you. As mentioned above, here’s how to identify and understand your skin type:
      • Sensitive skin: May sting or burn after product use

      • Normal skin: Clear and not sensitive

      • Dry skin: Flaky, itchy or rough

      • Combination skin: Dry in some areas and oily in others

    • Oily: Shiny and greasy

     

  5. Treat your lips. Since skin cancer can form on the lips, apply a lip balm or lipstick that contains sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher before going outdoors. If your lips feel chapped or dry, apply petroleum jelly for added moisture.
  6. Keep your hands off your face. Whenever you touch your face, you transfer dirt, germs, and oil from your hands to your face. Do your best to leave your skin alone throughout the day. Avoid picking, popping or squeezing pimples, as this can cause scarring.
  7. Check your skin regularly. Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the U.S., affecting one in five Americans in their lifetime. Further, nearly 20 Americans die from melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, every day. However, when detected early, skin cancer—including melanoma—is highly treatable. In fact, the five-year survival rate for people whose melanoma is detected and treated before it spreads to the lymph nodes is 98%. It is important to check your skin regularly for new spots, spots that are different from other spots on your body, or moles that itch, bleed or change color, as these are often early warning signs of skin cancer. If you notice any suspicious spots, make an appointment to see a board-certified dermatologist.

The skin is your body’s largest organ, so it’s important to take good care of it. If you have questions about your skin type or how to take care of your skin, talk to a dermatologist.

Reference: https://www.aad.org/public/everyday-care/skin-care-basics/care/skin-care-tips-dermatologists-use

Headaches in Babies and Small Children

We talk in general terms about headaches, what they are, and how to deal with them here, but headaches in small babies and small children deserve special attention. In this article, we will look at the symptoms and causes of headaches in children before the hormonal changes that come with puberty – from birth to about 10 or 11 years old.

What is a headache?

People – adults, children, and babies – have a headache when we feel pain or discomfort in our heads and/or around our faces. Because there are no pain nerves in the brain, it is not the brain that hurts, but rather we experience pain in the nerves and blood vessels in the jaw, neck, or head muscles. Babies and children can experience headache pain on one part of the head, they can be once off or more frequent.1 About 20% of school-age children and teens get frequent headaches. Mostly, these are tension headaches, but some children do struggle with migraines which can get worse when they become teenagers2 and which we will discuss in more detail in another article.

Doctors don’t entirely understand what causes headache pain, but they do recognize a range of different types of headache pain – up to 150.3

That sounds more terrifying than it is because, in most cases, what the doctors call primary headaches, are often nothing to worry about. Children, like adults, develop these headaches if they’re stressed, tired, or hungry. Usually, they go away – without medication. Headaches that are associated with an illness and/or conditions like influenza, hay fever, or injuries are known as secondary headaches and may require treatment (see below, when should I take my child to the doctor for a headache?).

There are four types of primary headache: tension headache, which we’ve already mentioned, migraines, chronic headaches, and cluster headaches. The latter two are not common in small children, and cluster headaches hardly ever occur in children under 10 years old.

How do I know if my little one has a headache?

Small children who can already speak will say something like, “Mamma, my head hurts!” or hold their heads and say, “Sore!” However, before they talk, babies use other signs to tell you their heads hurt. For example, they may cover their eyes or put their hands up, over their ears. Similarly, and like when they have a temperature, they may be sleepy and less active than usual and/or not interested in feeding.

Older children with headaches may not say they have a sore head, but be quieter than usual. So when you notice that your child is out of sorts, perhaps checking whether his/her head hurts is an excellent place to start.

Paediatric Migraines

Children can get migraines: in boys, they can start as early as 7 years old, and at around 10 for girls. Usually, there’s a family history of migraines, often with similar triggers. Children who have the gene for migraines may develop migraines when they get older.4 The typical symptoms of migraine in children, similar to adults, include:5

  • Throbbing pain in the head
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Sensitivity to bright light and noise
  • Aura, or seeing bright or flashing lights6
  • Paler skin than usual

How to help your child when she has a migraine

In addition to any prescribed migraine medication, encourage your child to quietly relax and rest in her room with the curtains closed and with a cold or warm cloth on her forehead. You could also help her to focus on her breathing with deep, calm breaths.

Children, stress, and tension headaches

We often forget that children, as we do, get stressed. Emotional conflict, as well as lack of sleep, hunger, and thirst, can all cause headaches. Again, some of the symptoms are the same as tension headaches in adults.

Stress and mental or emotional conflict can cause tension headaches that creep up on anyone – including children. Bullying at school or fighting with friends or even brothers and sisters could easily cause a tension headache. While every child may experience symptoms differently, here are some questions based on the most typical symptoms of a tension headache, and which you can ask your child:

  • Is your head sore on one side or both?
  • Are you uptight and clenching your jaw a lot?
  • Does it feel like you have something tight wrapped around your head?
  • Where else does it hurt? The back of your head, the neck?
  • How bad is the pain?

The pain with tension headaches is usually mild rather than severe.

In addition to these questions, you might also think about the following possible changes or events that be one of the causes of your child’s headache:

  • How has s/he been sleeping? Not getting enough, having bad dreams?
  • Is s/he drinking enough liquids? Could s/he be dehydrated?
  • Is s/he eating properly and not skipping meals?

Symptoms, like nausea and vomiting that are typical of migraine headaches, are not associated with tension headaches.

How to relieve your child’s tension headache

In addition to medication, or before resorting to medication, which we discuss below, help your child to relax by getting him/her to lie down with the head on a pillow (slightly raised). Sometimes a cold or warm cloth on the forehead helps as does a warm bath or shower.7

When should I take my child to the doctor for a headache?

Mothers have good instincts about their children and will know when to consult a medical practitioner about their child’s headaches. The most obvious is if the child often has headaches – for no reasons that you or she can identify. Also, if the headache doesn’t go away, comes back, and/or gets worse, take your child to the doctor.

Also, take your child to the hospital, if your child has a headache and if she:

  • Has a temperature/fever
  • Has a stiff neck
  • Has pain in the back of the head
  • Has difficulty seeing, or cannot see
  • Is vomiting
  • Has any weakness in her muscles
  • Has any symptoms that wake them up in the middle of the night

In the case of secondary headaches, that comes with a cold or flu, mum tends to know best. However, if your child has any head or neck trauma, whether it’s a nasty scratch, cut, bump or bruise, it’s a good idea to take your child to the emergency room. This way if there is brain damage or some other problem, it is quickly dealt with.8

 

What medicines are used for children’s headaches?

As we have already noted, children’s headaches don’t always need to be treated. However, if your child is very uncomfortable, there are over-the-counter pain killers like Emzor 500mg (paracetamol) and ibuprofen that you can use. Before you give your child medicine, do remember that the dosages for children are based on their age and weight, so it’s best to do so under medical supervision.

If your child has been diagnosed with migraine, it’s possible that your pediatrician will prescribe one of the following medications:9

  • Rizatriptan (Maxalt), for children between 6 and 17
  • Propranolol – unless your child has asthma, diabetes, or depression.
  • Topiramate, which is an anti-seizure drug that is as effective as propranolol
  • Amitriptyline, which is an antidepressant often taken at bedtime, can help to prevent migraine and tension headaches

Disclaimer: For the above-listed non-over-the-counter medications require diagnosis and a prescription from your medical practitioner.

 

Disclaimer: The information on this site should not be used as a substitute for professional medical care or advice. Contact a health care provider if you have questions about your health.

Sources:


  1. Seladi-Schulman, J. 2021 Having Constant Headaches? What You Need to Know. Healthline. [Online] Available from <https://www.healthline.com/health/constant-headache#causes> 21/07/2022
  2. Cleveland Clinic medical professionals. Headaches in Children [Online] Available from <https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/4225-headaches-in-children> 22/07/2022
  3. Headache Basics. WebMD [Online] Available from  <https://www.webmd.com/migraines-headaches/migraines-headaches-basics> 21/07/2022
  4. Headaches in Children. Johns Hopkins Medicine [Online] Available from <https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/headache/headaches-in-children#> 21/07/2022
  5. Chee, P 2021. Headache.  Child Neurology Foundation [Online] Available from <https://www.childneurologyfoundation.org/disorder/headache/> 21/07/2022
  6. Davis, P D. 2021 Definition of Aura RxList  [Online] Available from <https://www.rxlist.com/aura/definition.htm> 21/07/2022
  7. Khatri, M (reviewer) 2021.  What Should I Do for My Child’s Headaches? Home Treatments. WebMD [Online] Available from <https://www.webmd.com/migraines-headaches/guide/your-childs-headache> 21/07/2022
  8. Saling, J., 2020. Head Injury. WebMD [Online] Available from <https://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/guide/head-injuries-causes-and-treatments>
  9. Marchin, A., 2022 Pediatric Headaches: Know Which Symptoms Are Red Flags Healthline [Online] Available from <https://www.healthline.com/health/pediatric-headache-red-flags> 21/07/2022

Top 4 reasons why you’re not sleeping through the night

The world looks sunny after a great night’s rest. But it’s a different story when sleep is frequently interrupted. A lack of Zs makes it harder to think and easier to become irritated and anxious. In the long term, inadequate sleep increases your risk for obesity, high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, and even premature death. That makes it important to figure out what’s interrupting your sleep.

Read more “Top 4 reasons why you’re not sleeping through the night”

Condom sizing: how to choose the right condom size

Condom size matters—maybe more than you realize.

A poorly fitted condom can cause performance issues, such as condom-associated erectile problems and an inability to ejaculate, which might lead to condom anxiety. It can also raise your risk for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and unplanned pregnancy (Beksinska, 2020Wainipitapong, 2021).

Given these risks, it may surprise you to learn that nearly half of men aged 18 to 67 say they had used a badly fitting condom during the previous three months (Crosby, 2010).

If you fall into that group, or if you just want to learn a bit more about condom sizing, here’s how to measure yourself for a perfect condom fit, how to know what size condom to buy, and other details on how condom sizes work and how to have safer sex.

How to know what condom size to buy

As with clothing, condom sizes can vary from one manufacturer to the next. One maker’s “standard condom”, “snug fit” or “extra-large size” may not be the same as another’s. The days of condoms coming in just two sizes—regular condoms and XXL or “magnums”—are long gone.

However, most of the big condom brands now provide condom length and condom width information for their products. If you know your own measurements, you should be able to shop confidently for the best condoms for you despite all the different sizes now available (Cecil, 2017).

Finding your measurements 

To identify what size condom you need, you’ll need to measure the length and the width of your penis with a tape measure or ruler and a piece of string. Once you know these two measurements, you can check different brands in the store or online and choose a condom that most closely matches your erect penis size.

You should have a full erection while measuring. Also, be honest with yourself when it comes to your measurements. Some research has found that when men self-measure their erections, they may exaggerate their figures (King, 2019).

Measure penis length

While fully erect, measure how long your penis is from its base to its tip. Do this with the ruler or measuring tape running along the top of your penis, not on the side or underneath.

You’ll want to gently push the ruler or tape measure into your lower abdomen so that it touches your pubic bone. That’s the bone you can feel with your fingers if you press in at the base of your penis (Veale, 2014).

Measure penis width

Using a piece of string, wrap it around the thickest part of your erect penis. This could be the base or the middle. Be sure you’re not squeezing your penis with the string, which could lead to a bad measurement. Mark down the size. This is the girth of your penis, also known as its circumference (Veale, 2014).

To get your width—aka, the diameter of your penis—divide your girth measurement by 3.14. This is sometimes noted on the condom’s packaging as the “nominal width,” which means the width of the condom when it is rolled.

OC Condom sizing: how to choose the right condom size image c4fbf72a-a249-41c0-8bd2-b1194ab3da3d

Finding the “right” condom size

There is no true average or “standard size” when it comes to today’s condom sizes, but you (as well as condom manufacturers) may still be wondering about average penis sizes.

Different studies have come up with slightly different figures. But a 2015 research review found that the average erect penis size is 5.17 inches long (13.12 cm). And the average erect penis circumference (aka “girth”) is 4.59 inches (9.31 cm) (Veale, 2014). (if you’re wondering what qualifies as a “micropenis,” some researchers have defined it as anything less than 3.3 inches—and, yes, there are condoms on the market available if these are your measurements)

Of course, condom manufacturers are well aware of these statistics and design most standard condoms to fit these averages. Looking at size recs from one popular condom manufacturer, the “standard” condom size will be right for you if your penis is between 5 and 7 inches long, with a girth of 4-5 inches. If you’re bigger than 7 inches, this condom manufacturer recommends their “large/XL” product (Trojan, n.d.).

The bottom line here is that it’s important to find condoms that fit you properly—particularly if you’ve had condoms break, or if what you’re using seems too small. Fortunately, these days you have options. But remember, every brand is different, and your condom size may be different when using different brands. If you want the right fit, you really need to measure yourself and check it against the manufacturer’s specs. You may even want to buy several types of condoms to compare how well they fit.

What happens if a condom is too small or too big?

A condom’s size can affect how well it works. You want a snug fit, like a “second skin”. But if the condom is too small, it may be more likely to break. If it’s too large, this can lead to slippage. Both condom breaks and slippage can raise your risk for a sexually transmitted infection and unwanted pregnancy (Cecil, 2010).

Other research has found that roughly 1 in 5 men has experienced erection issues while trying to have sex using a condom. If they’re too small, condoms can mess with your ability to get or keep an erection because they can cut off circulation and make it difficult for blood to enter the penis. When a condom is too large, it can interfere with stimulation, making it more difficult to get and stay hard (Sanders, 2015).

In summary: once you’ve measured the length and width of your penis, you can select a properly sized condom. Condom size descriptions can vary from brand to brand, so you may want to buy several types to compare how well they fit and find one that is comfortable and offers full protection. You can make it fun! Practice putting the condom on by yourself without a partner. Masturbating with a condom on and exploring ways you can feel pleasure while wearing it not only helps you find the best fitting condom—it can also help get rid of any negative associations with condoms.

DISCLAIMER

If you have any medical questions or concerns, please talk to your healthcare provider. The articles on Health Guide are underpinned by peer-reviewed research and information drawn from medical societies and governmental agencies. However, they are not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

References

    • Beksinska, M., Wong, R., & Smit, J. (2020). Male and female condoms: Their key role in pregnancy and STI/HIV prevention. Best Practice & Research. Clinical Obstetrics & Gynaecology , 66 , 55–67. doi: 10.1016/j.bpobgyn.2019.12.001. Retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32007451/

    • Cecil, M., Nelson, A. L., Trussell, J., & Hatcher, R. (2010). If the condom doesn’t fit, you must resize it. Contraception , 82 (6), 489–490. doi: 10.1016/j.contraception.2010.06.007. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5512290/

    • Cecil, M., Warner, L., & Siegler, A. J. (2013). Online purchases of an expanded range of condom sizes in comparison to current dimensional requirements allowable by US national standards. Sexual Health , 10 (5), 408–413. doi: 10.1071/SH13049. Retrieved from https://www.publish.csiro.au/sh/sh13049

    • Crosby, R. A., Yarber, W. L., Graham, C. A., & Sanders, S. A. (2010). Does it fit okay? Problems with condom use as a function of self-reported poor fit. Sexually Transmitted Infections, 86 (1): 36-38 . doi: 10.1136/sti.2009.036665. Retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20157178/

    • King, B. M., Duncan, L. M., Clinkenbeard, K. M., Rutland, M. B., & Ryan, K. M. (2019). Social Desirability and Young Men’s Self-Reports of Penis Size. Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy , 45 (5), 452–455. doi: 10.1080/0092623X.2018.1533905. Retrieved from https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/0092623X.2018.1533905

    • Mahdy, H., Shaeffer, A., & McNabb D. (2021). Condoms. [Updated Apr. 26, 2021]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29261966/

    • Reece, M., Herbenick, D., Sanders, S. A., Monahan, P., Temkit, M., & Yarber, W. L. (2008). Breakage, slippage and acceptability outcomes of a condom fitted to penile dimensions. Sexually Transmitted Infections , 84 (2), 143–149. doi: org/10.1136/sti.2007.028316. Retrieved from https://sti.bmj.com/content/84/2/143.short

    • Trojan. (n.d). Condoms size and fit guide. Retrieved Jan. 26, 2022 from https://www.trojan.ca/en/sex-information/condom-size-fit-guide

    • Veale, D., Miles, S., Bramley, S., Muir, G., & Hodsoll, J. (2015). Am I normal? A systematic review and construction of nomograms for flaccid and erect penis length and circumference in up to 15 521 men. BJU International, 115 (6), 978–986. doi: 10.1111/bju.13010. Retrieved from https://bjui-journals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/bju.13010

    • Wainipitapong, S., Wiwattarangkul, T., & Bumphenkiatikul, T. (2021). Delayed Ejaculation Due to Improper Male Condom Size: A Case Report. Sexual Medicine , 9 (3), 100373. doi: 10.1016/j.esxm.2021.100373. Retrieved from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2050116121000532

What drinks help you last longer in bed?

Lasting longer in the sheets is a common goal for plenty of men, even though our estimates around how long sex should last are typically off by a mile. For example, sex lasting 3–13 minutes is considered “normal,” with the actual average hovering somewhere around 5.4 minutes (a bit longer if you’re younger, a bit shorter if you’re older).

You may have seen TikToks or articles online sharing apocryphal stories of how drinking this or that can help you last longer in bed. Before we get started, let’s clear the air with some truth: to date, no studies have found a direct link between drinking certain beverages and increased sexual stamina. In general, what you eat and drink has a limited, if any, impact on your sexual performance.

Having said that, there are studies suggesting that different drinks can be better for your health, as well as various factors tied to sexual health in particular, such as blood pressure. Drinking these beverages may indirectly help with sexual performance. Plus, they often boast other health benefits, so what’s the harm in giving them a try?

With that caveat out of the way, let’s take a look at ten drinks that may help you last longer in bed.

What to drink to last longer in bed

Before we dive into the drinks that may have an indirect effect on how long you last in bed, it’s helpful to understand how erections and ejaculation work, exactly. Here’s a quick review:

When you get aroused, your brain sends a message that starts a chemical response throughout your body. It encourages the muscles in your penis to relax and get larger, so blood can rush in and fill it up. At the same time, the veins that allow blood to leave your penis get more rigid, so the blood becomes trapped, creating a hard erection. If there’s a hiccup in that process, it can lead to erectile dysfunction (ED), which is when you can get or stay hard long enough for satisfying sex. While the definition of satisfying sex differs for everyone, if you find that you can’t stave off ejaculation for more than three minutes, it may be a sign of premature ejaculation.

Whether you find that you’ve experienced ED, PE, or both, there are two important things to remember:

  1. They’re both common.

  2. There are safe and effective treatments available for both.

Now, if you’d like to learn more about drinks that will help you last longer, keep in mind that while the drinks below may not directly impact your ability to get or sustain an erection or stave off ejaculation, they can help with other parts of the process, such as improving blood circulation or pressure, your cardiovascular health, or your physical stamina, so you can keep thrusting. Let’s get into it.

1. Water

Water is vital for our overall health and sexual health, too, it turns out. Staying hydrated affects blood pressure and blood flow to your muscles, both of which can impact your erections.

If plain old water is too boring for you, try coconut water instead. Thanks to its high antioxidant content, coconut has long been used as a medical plant to treat impotence and ED. And, studies of rats have found it had a positive effect on various sexual behaviors, from mounting and penetration to ejaculation.

2. Pomegranate Juice

Pomegranate juice is a rich source of antioxidants and plant polyphenols. Animal studies have found that regular consumption of pomegranate extract can reduce oxidative stress, increase blood flow to the penis, and improve smooth muscle relaxation, thereby improving the erectile response.

In one small study of men with mild to moderate ED, participants reported improved erections after drinking pomegranate juice for two months. And while that might sound promising, the researchers did note that statistical significance was not achieved, meaning they couldn’t attribute the better erections to the juice. Another small study of men getting penile implants suggests that drinking pomegranate juice can help improve erections in men with ED who don‘t respond to PDE5 inhibitors like Cialis or Viagra.

3. Green Tea

Similar to pomegranate juice, green tea is rich in antioxidants, polyphenols, and other micronutrients that may offer some benefit to people with ED. In one study, researchers isolated epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), the most potent antioxidative ingredient in green tea, and fed it to rats. After a period of three months, the researchers found that it improved various markers of the rats’ erectile function, including the relaxation of smooth muscle.

So, you may want to try swapping your cup of coffee for a cup of green tea, or better yet, matcha (a powdered, highly concentrated version of green tea).

4. Ginseng Tea

If green tea isn’t your jam (er, tea), you might try ginseng tea instead. You can also get ginseng on its own or as a dietary supplement.

A scientific review of nine studies of men with mild to moderate ED, aged 20 to 70 years old, found that those who consume the root are more likely to self-report an improved ability to have sex, as well as a mild improvement in their satisfaction with said sex. However, the researchers noted that ginseng may only have a trivial effect, at best, on erectile function and dysfunction, when compared to placebo.

5. Yohimbe Tea

Yohimbe is another type of tea that may help you last longer in bed, albeit according to limited evidence. The bark of the yohimbe tree contains yohimbine, an extract that has often been used as an aphrodisiac in Africa.

Several studies have found that yohimbe outperforms placebo in improving erectile function, although some have found it needs to be combined with other supplements to truly be effective.

6. Ashwagandha Tea

Ashwagandha is yet another extract you can add to tea to potentially strengthen your erections and sexual stamina. The herb has long been used in Ayurvedic medicine to promote better health, stronger muscles, and endurance — all things that can help you last longer during sex.

However, the research is mixed. While several studies have found that ashwagandha can increase serum testosterone levels and sexual well-being, many have also found that it doesn’t have any significant impact on other markers of sexual performance, including fatigue, sexual well-being, or psychogenic ED (erectile dysfunction related to stress, anxiety, depression, or other psychological causes).

7. Beetroot Juice

Studies have found that the nitrates in beetroot juice can have a positive effect on blood pressure in both healthy people and those with hypertension (high blood pressure). Hypertension is strongly associated with ED, which may be caused by either the high blood pressure itself, or the medications taken to manage it.

So, drinking beetroot juice may help improve cardiovascular health and erectile health.

8. Maca Root Powder Smoothie

Maca extract is a root in the mustard family, historically used in the Andes as an aphrodisiac. You can get it as a powder and add it to your morning smoothie.

One study of 50 men with mild ED compared the effects of maca powder with a placebo. After 12 weeks, both groups of men experienced improvements in erectile function, but the effect was more pronounced in those who had the maca root compared with those who took the placebo. Additionally, only the men in the maca group reported improvements in physical and social performance.

However, a separate review of clinical trials using maca found that the evidence for maca in improving sexual function is limited.

9. Watermelon juice

Watermelon is rich in L-citrulline, an amino acid that boosts nitric oxide production. Nitric oxide, in turn, relaxes your blood vessels, which can improve blood flow to the penis during sex.

A small study of men with mild ED found that oral supplements of L-citrulline improved erection hardness, although to a lesser extent than PDE5 inhibitors like Viagra or Cialis. They also ended up having more sex during the treatment period, which is a happy side effect we can all get on board with!

Viagra Important Safety Information: Read more about serious warnings and safety info.

Cialis Important Safety Information: Read more about serious warnings and safety info.

10. Aloe vera

The aloe vera herb — yep, the same one you find in creams and lotions — also has properties that may help with sexual stamina.

The antioxidant has been used as an aphrodisiac thanks to its positive effects on testosterone levels and blood flow, which may indirectly help erections. You can add aloe vera powder to a smoothie or mix the jelly into your drink.

Does alcohol make you last longer in bed? 

It depends. While alcohol lowers inhibitions and helps you feel aroused, it can also make it much harder to get and sustain an erection, especially if you binge drink. Alcohol can contribute to dehydration and disrupt nerve communication between the brain and the penis. Together these two factors can make it harder to get hard— hence the notorious “whiskey dick.” Heavy drinking has also been associated with premature ejaculation and blood vessel damage which negatively impacts blood flow to the tissues around the penis which is crucial for getting an erection.

However, some research suggests that light to moderate drinking (1–2 drinks per day) may actually protect against ED.

Alternatives to last longer in bed 

Given that the evidence tying drinks to stronger erections is limited, you might be interested in other things you can do to last longer in bed. There are a lot of techniques you can use to last longer during sex, from improving your general health to trying therapy and medication.

Eat well

In a way, what you eat can affect your ability to last as long as you want in bed. Diabetes and hypertension are both associated with premature ejaculation, and both conditions can either be improved or worsened by your diet. People who follow a Mediterranean diet — i.e. a diet high in fruits, vegetables, nuts, fish, and whole grains, but low in red meat and processed foods —are less likely to have ED, and more likely to be sexually active.

Different foods may also help you last longer in bed, including:

  • Tomatoes

  • Leafy greens

  • Peppers

  • Oysters

  • Nuts

  • Coffee

  • Dark chocolate

Manage your stress

Stress can make it tough to get in the mood in the first place, and once you’re feeling frisky, it can rear its ugly head again, creating performance anxiety. Worse, premature ejaculation makes you feel even more stressed, further adding to your frustration.

Explore meditation and relaxation techniques to lower your stress levels, or consider talk therapy if you need a bit more help.

Exercise regularly

Exercise can help stave off some of the conditions that can contribute to premature ejaculation or ED, such as obesity and high blood pressure. Plus, it’s a great way to relieve stress.

Studies have shown that men who regularly engage in physical activity last longer in bed than those who lead a more sedentary lifestyle. To prevent coming too early, experts recommend exercising at least 30 minutes, five times a week.

Try behavioral techniques

A number of behavioral techniques can help you last longer in bed, including masturbating before sex. Other options include:

  • The stop-start method, also known as edging. In this method, once you’re about to orgasm, you stop having sex and wait until that “point of no return” feeling subsides. Then, you dive back in.

  • The squeeze technique. With this one, you also stop right at the brink of climax. Then, you or your partner squeezes the head of your penis until the feeling goes away, and you get back to it.

  • Pelvic floor exercises. Also known as Kegels, these strengthen your pelvic muscles, so you can better control when you come. These are the same muscles you tighten when you’re trying to avoid going pee. Hold them for a few seconds, then relax, and repeat a few times a day.

  • Wearing condoms. Adding that extra barrier reduces the sensitivity you feel during sex, which can enable you to last longer.

Changing up your sex positions more often and spending more time during foreplay can also help sex last longer, as can having sex more often. Who’s in?

Address other health issues

Several health conditions have been linked to ED and premature ejaculation, including diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, smoking, alcoholism, benign prostatic hyperplasia, and hypogonadism. Treating these conditions may help you last longer in bed.

If you’re dealing with depression, or your stress feels overwhelming, consider talking to someone through therapy. Cognitive behavioral therapy can also be helpful in treating premature ejaculation and other hang-ups around sex.

Ask about medication

If lifestyle changes and the tips above don’t seem to help, talk to your healthcare provider about treatment for premature ejaculation.

Applying topical anesthetic creams, including lidocaine and benzocaine, 20 minutes before sex can make you last longer in bed. But, they can also cause numbness for you and your partner (wearing condoms can prevent the numbness from affecting your partner). SSRIs and antidepressants can also delay ejaculation and may be prescribed off-label for this purpose.

The drugs prescribed to treat ED, namely Viagra (sildenafil) and Cialis (tadalafil), may also be prescribed for premature ejaculation. Some studies suggest that both Viagra and Cialis can delay ejaculation, but others concluded that more research is still needed.

It is totally possible to last longer in bed with some adjustments, whether it’s taking care of your health or finding a prescription that works. Talk to your healthcare provider about your options.

DISCLAIMER

If you have any medical questions or concerns, please talk to your healthcare provider. The articles on Health Guide are underpinned by peer-reviewed research and information drawn from medical societies and governmental agencies. However, they are not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

Written by Amelia Willson : Fact checked by Yael Cooperman, MD

 

Premature ejaculation (PE): what is it, causes, symptoms, treatment

What is premature ejaculation?

Premature ejaculation (PE) is one of the most common male sexual conditions, affecting around one-third of men aged 18–59 (Crowdis, 2021). PE (also called early ejaculation or rapid ejaculation) can keep you and your partner from enjoying sex.

But what is premature ejaculation? Ejaculation is a release of semen from the penis and premature ejaculation is when ejaculation happens before you or your partner would like. Occasional PE is usually nothing to worry about; however, if it is happening regularly or causing you significant distress, you can speak with a healthcare provider to explore the various treatment options available.

According to the International Society for Sexual Medicine (ISSM), you may have PE if you (Althof, 2014):

  • Always or almost always ejaculate within one minute of penetration

  • Are unable to control or delay ejaculation during sexual activities all or nearly all of the time

  • Are experiencing distress, frustration, and/or avoidance of sexual intimacy

Types of premature ejaculation

There are two main types of premature ejaculation: lifelong and acquired.

Lifelong premature ejaculation happens every time (or nearly every time) you have sex—ever since your first sexual encounters. In acquired PE, someone who used to have satisfactory control over when they ejaculate suddenly or gradually develops PE. If you typically have control over when you ejaculate and experience just an instance or two of premature ejaculation, it’s usually not considered to be a problem.

Premature ejaculation causes

Though the exact cause of premature ejaculation isn’t clear, it is thought to be due to a combination of psychological and physical factors.

Psychological factors that may play a role in PE include:

  • Anxiety, including worrying about PE

  • A history of sexual abuse or sexual repression

  • Depression

  • Poor body image and/or lack of self-esteem

  • Decreased sexual drive

  • Stress

  • Guilt (which may cause you to rush your sexual activities leading to PE)

  • Unrealistic expectations about sexual performance

  • Relationship problems

Several physical factors may also be risk factors for PE. While the research behind these factors isn’t very clear, they may play a role in the development of the condition. In some cases, treating the underlying condition can improve symptoms of PE.

Other biological factors that may play a role in PE include (Althof, 2014):

  • Extreme sensitivity in the head of the penis

  • Inflammation of the prostate gland (prostatitis)

  • Starting or stopping the use of prescribed or recreational drugs

  • A condition called chronic pelvic pain syndrome

  • Thyroid hormone abnormalities

  • testosterone imbalance

Aging can cause changes in erections and ejaculation but is not considered to be a direct cause of PE. As you get older, your erections may not be as firm, and you may not last as long before ejaculation (Althof, 2014).

Premature ejaculation and erectile dysfunction

Premature ejaculation is often confused with erectile dysfunction (ED), but they aren’t the same thing. With ED, a person might find that they can’t get an erection hard enough or for long enough to have satisfying sex. Sometimes people with ED rush through their sexual activities to finish before they lose their erection. Others with ED may develop PE because of the sexual performance anxiety they have due to their ED. PE and ED can exist together, further decreasing sexual satisfaction and affecting your sex life (Sooriyamoorthy, 2021).

Signs/symptoms of premature ejaculation

While the medical definition of PE is the inability to prevent ejaculating within one minute of penetrative sex, this difficulty controlling ejaculation can also happen when you’re masturbating or during other forms of sexual activity, including anal sex and oral sex. PE occurs when you ejaculate before you and your partner would like, regardless of the type of sex (Althof, 2014).

Treating premature ejaculation

Successful diagnosis of PE hinges on having an open conversation with your healthcare provider, something that can be difficult in and of itself. While these conversations may be awkward, they are vital to getting the proper treatment and improving your sexual health. Your provider will ask you several questions to determine if you have PE and, if so, which type (lifelong or acquired). Together, you will decide on the best way to treat your premature ejaculation.

Some of the questions may include (Crowdis, 2021):

  • What is the time between penetration and ejaculation?

  • Can you delay ejaculation?

  • Do you feel bothered, annoyed, or frustrated by your premature ejaculation?

  • How often does PE happen to you?

  • How long have you had a problem with ejaculatory control?

  • Does this happen with just one particular person or every sexual partner?

  • Does PE happen every time you engage in sex?

  • What type of sexual activity (foreplay, masturbation, intercourse, etc.) do you engage in, and how often?

  • How has PE affected your sex life?

  • Is there anything that makes your PE better or worse?

Several types of treatment for premature ejaculation exist, and they are often combined to help you last longer. These include psychological, behavioral, and medical therapies.

Psychological treatments

Psychological therapy for individuals and couples, such as sex therapy, works by improving sexual self-confidence and performance anxiety, as well as allowing you to address personal and/or relationship issues that may be linked to your premature ejaculation.

Relationship problems are a common side effect of PE, so discussing your treatment with your serious partner can help in some cases. While therapy can take time, it is effective. Research has found that it is most beneficial when combined with medical treatment (Porst, 2019).

Behavioral treatments

Behavioral therapy comes in many forms; just as with psychological therapy, it can be combined with medical treatment to enhance its effectiveness. The three most commonly discussed behavioral techniques are the stop-start method, the squeeze technique, and pelvic floor exercises.

The ultimate goal of the first two methods (sometimes called edging) is to make you more aware of mid-range levels of excitement and the sensations leading up to climax so that you can better control and delay ejaculation on your own. Pelvic floor exercises aim to strengthen the muscles that control ejaculation (Raveendran, 2021).

  • Stop-start: In the stop-start method, you and your partner perform your usual sexual activities until you feel almost ready to ejaculate. You then stop until the urge to ejaculate has passed, after which you resume your sexual activities. You’ll then repeat this process as many times as you need to until you’ve had a satisfying sexual encounter.

  • Squeeze technique: You and your partner initiate sex as usual until you feel almost ready to ejaculate. At this point, your partner squeezes the end of your penis, where the head meets the shaft until the urge to ejaculate diminishes; repeat as necessary.

  • Pelvic floor exercises (Kegel exercises): These can help strengthen muscles used during ejaculation. The pelvic floor muscles appear to have increased activity during ejaculation, and it may be that strengthening these muscles can help you delay ejaculation. The pelvic floor muscles are the ones that allow you to stop urinating mid-stream or what you would use to prevent yourself from passing gas.

Decreasing penis sensitivity

Decreasing the sensitivity of your penis can help you last longer and delay ejaculation. There are several ways to achieve this (Porst, 2019).

  • Masturbation before sex: Some people find that masturbating before intercourse partially desensitizes the penis and allows for better control of ejaculation.

  • Topical anesthetic creams: The topical anesthetics (numbing medications) most often used are lidocaine, benzocaine, or prilocaine. They can be applied to the head of the penis approximately 10–20 minutes before sex. However, if you use too much or leave it on for too long, you can numb your penis and lose your erection. Be sure to wipe it off before penetration to prevent transfer to your partner.

  • Topical anesthetic sprays: You can also apply a topical anesthetic spray rather than a cream. One anesthetic spray, lidocaine/prilocaine (brand name Fortacin), has been approved in Europe to treat PE. It uses a unique formulation that prevents the numbing medicine from being absorbed into the skin of the shaft of the penis. Only the penis head (glans penis) is affected, reducing the risk that you lose your erection.

  • Anesthetic wipesAnesthetic wipes are a discreet way of applying a topical anesthetic. Apply the wipe to the head of your penis and wait for 5–10 minutes. Wipe the area with a damp tissue immediately before sex.

Medical treatments

When it comes to medical management of premature ejaculation, there are no FDA-approved medications. However, some drugs are used “off-label” in the United States, meaning that it is being used to treat a condition that it was not FDA-approved to treat. One downside of taking medications is the risk of side effects or drug interactions. Make sure to talk to your healthcare provider about your medical history and any medicines you are taking.

Medications used off-label to treat PE include (Porst, 2019; Raveendran, 2021):

  • Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs): These drugs were initially FDA-approved for depression treatment, but studies have shown them to be effective for treating PE as well. Paroxetine (brand name Brisdelle), sertraline (brand name Zoloft), fluoxetine (brand name Prozac), and citalopram (brand name Celexa) are SSRIs that may help stop premature ejaculation; they are effective and relatively inexpensive. Dapoxetine is a short-acting SSRI that may also be an effective PE treatment. It can be taken one hour before sexual activity and helps to delay ejaculation.

  • Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs): This class includes medications like clomipramine and was also initially approved to treat depression. Studies do show a significant delay in ejaculation with TCAs when used either daily or on-demand (two to six hours before sex).

  • Phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitors (PDE5-inhibitors): Usually used to treat erectile dysfunction, these medications include sildenafil (brand name Viagra), tadalafil (brand name Cialis), and vardenafil (brand name Levitra). They are most useful for people with both ED and PE; their effectiveness is uncertain with regards to treating PE alone.

  • Alpha-1 adrenoceptor antagonists: Medications such as terazosin, doxazosin, alfuzosin, tamsulosin, and silodosin, were initially FDA-approved for the treatment of high blood pressure and prostate enlargement. Small studies show that they may help with premature ejaculation if taken one hour before sex, but more research is needed to confirm.

  • Tramadol: This is a pain medication that also affects serotonin and can delay ejaculation. It also has the potential for addiction and abuse, so it should be used with caution.

Viagra Important Safety Information: Read more about serious warnings and safety info.

Cialis Important Safety Information: Read more about serious warnings and safety info.

Natural remedies for PE

Both zinc and magnesium may play a role in male sexual health.

Zinc may affect testosterone levels, and people with premature ejaculation have been shown to have less magnesium in their semen (Omu, 2001Nikoobakht, 2005). While the role these vitamins play in PE is not well understood or established, increasing your intake of both minerals may improve your PE.

The best way to increase your zinc and magnesium intake is through diet, although supplementation is an option, with guidance from your healthcare provider. If your provider finds that your levels of these vitamins are low, you can increase your zinc and magnesium by:

  • Eating foods rich in zinc, including shellfish, lean beef, seeds, fortified cereals, dark chocolate, beans, and nuts

  • Eating foods rich in magnesium, including leafy vegetables, nuts, beans, and whole-grain cereal

  • Taking magnesium supplements (recommended daily dose for magnesium supplements is 350 mg/day for healthy adults) (NIH-a, 2021)

  • Taking zinc supplements (recommended daily dose for zinc is 11 mg per day) (NIH-b, 2021)

Too much magnesium can be dangerous, so be sure to talk to your healthcare provider about your diet and mineral needs.

One study reported that a proprietary blend of zinc, folic acid, biotin, and Rhodiola rosea (golden root) improved premature ejaculation and quality of sex life among people who used it (Cai, 2016).

When to see a healthcare provider

If you are having difficulty controlling your ejaculations during sex and it’s making it difficult to enjoy sex, you may have premature ejaculation. Talk to your healthcare provider (and your partner) about your symptoms and treatment options.

DISCLAIMER

If you have any medical questions or concerns, please talk to your healthcare provider. The articles on Health Guide are underpinned by peer-reviewed research and information drawn from medical societies and governmental agencies. However, they are not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

Reviewed by Mike Bohl, MD, MPH, ALM,

Written by Chimene Richa, MD

14 tips to help you last longer in bed

What is the average ejaculation time?

You might wonder if the time it takes you to ejaculate is “normal.” But there really isn’t a solid answer to what an average ejaculation time looks like.

One study gathered information from men in five countries to assess the average time ejaculation time. They found the majority of men ejaculated after four minutes or more from the moment of penetration. Another study of 500 couples found that the average time until ejaculation for vaginal sex ranged from 3–7 minutes.

Of course, these numbers don’t capture the whole picture. The studies only examined heterosexual couples, meaning a whole range of other demographics weren’t surveyed. The time also only measured penetrative vaginal sex and didn’t take time spent on foreplay into account.

Another thing to keep in mind is that society gives us a bit of a skewed understanding of how long we’re supposed to last. While “going all night” might sound like goals, the truth is that most people find sex lasting up to 13 minutes to be ideal, with anything beyond that being too long. Now, with that said, there are plenty of people out there who find that they can’t last longer than a few seconds during penetrative sex. When that’s the case, or anytime you find that you can’t stave off ejaculation long enough for you and your partner to enjoy sex, there may be room to try some tips and tricks that can help you last longer in bed.

Tips for lasting longer in bed

To find the right strategy, you need to identify the root of your concern. Some methods will focus on you, while others address your partner’s pleasure.

1. Use more foreplay

If you’re worried about your partner’s satisfaction, adding in or increasing foreplay is a good strategy. Switching to sex positions they enjoy, or upping your communication to discover new ones together, is another tactic. This is especially true for heterosexual couples, since there tends to be a gap between how long it takes men and women to finish.

While everyone is different, in general, women require direct clitoral stimulation to orgasm, and often find it more difficult to finish from penetrative sex alone, since the clitoris doesn’t come into direct contact with the penis during penetrative sex. One survey of over 50,000 people found that just 18% of women reported experiencing an orgasm from vaginal penetration.

Starting with fingerplay, oral sex, or asking your partner what they love is a great way to bridge the orgasm gap and improve sexual satisfaction to ensure that you last long enough for both of you to enjoy sex.

2. Try edging

Edging can help extend the time it takes to orgasm, though it takes some practice to get right. What is edging, you ask? This technique is when you get very close to ejaculation, but then stop until the feeling has passed. These pauses can calm things down and keep your sex session lasting longer.

There are a few different methods for edging. You can try the stop-start method, which is when you pause sex or masturbation until you no longer feel like you’re going to finish. There is also the squeeze technique where you or a partner squeezes the head of your penis until you feel like you can keep going.

3. Bring sex toys into the bedroom

If there’s a gap between when you finish and when your partner does, using a toy they like can help close the gap. The great thing about sex toys is the endless variety. You can try using a vibrator during sex or foreplay to focus on getting your partner to that sweet spot faster.

4. Masturbate before sex

This option may take some experimentation to get right. Try to find a time for masturbation close enough to sex so you’re not too worked up before it starts, but  that still leaves enough time for you to get excited and enjoy sex as you should.

5. Use thicker condoms

Thicker condoms create a more significant barrier, which may decrease the intensity of sensation during sex. If what you’re feeling is less intense than usual, it could take you longer to ejaculate. That’s why thicker condoms are commonly marketed for extended pleasure.

There’s little research to back up this method, but it may be worth a try. One study including men across five countries found no connection between condom use and time to ejaculation, but it wasn’t looking at people with PE. They also didn’t ask participants to use thicker condoms.

Though studies don’t prove thicker condoms work, there’s little risk in trying it since condoms are cheap and offer the added benefit of protecting against sexually transmitted infections (STIs), too.

6. Explore different sex positions

There’s a reason they say, “Variety is the spice of life.” Adopting that motto in the bedroom can help you last longer in bed. Things necessarily slow down, if only for a moment, when you change sex positions, which may help bring you back from that “point of no return.” Plus, different positions can be more or less stimulating for you, or your partner. And, you might discover a new favorite position (or two)!

7. Strengthen your pelvic floor muscles

There is a physical component to PE that historically hasn’t gotten much attention. Those would be your pelvic floor muscles, and strengthening them could help improve PE.

Kegels are a good pelvic floor exercise and aren’t just for women. To perform kegels, focus on lifting and pulling in your pelvic floor without using your back or butt muscles to help. Squeeze the muscles down there like you’re trying to hold in pee or prevent yourself from passing gas. That squeeze you feel is your pelvic floor muscles contracting.

Repeat that squeeze 10–15 times, holding each for three seconds and relaxing for three. Do this at least three times every day. It’s okay if you can’t do a full set of 15 kegels on your first day. Keep at it and work your way up.

8. Try benzocaine wipes

These wipes use benzocaine as the active ingredient, which has a mild numbing effect. Benzocaine wipes are generally used on the most sensitive parts of the penis like the frenulum, which is the connective tissue on the underside of the penis that runs between the head and shaft. You use these wipes about five minutes before sex. Be sure to allow the substance to dry before sex so it doesn’t transfer to your partner.

Preliminary research on these wipes is promising. In one study, the average time to ejaculate doubled for participants after two months of using them. Participants also felt less performance anxiety and better control over their orgasms when they used them.

9. Use numbing creams or sprays

Like benzocaine wipes, there is a wide range of other desensitizing products out there. Promescent is a topical desensitizer spray used on your penis that delays how long it takes to orgasm.

Creams are also available. These mild numbing agents decrease sensitivity so orgasms don’t come as quickly. The main active ingredients in these products are lidocaine and benzocaine, which are both mild anesthetics used for the treatment of PE.

10. Consider weight management if you have overweight

Studies have documented a link between premature ejaculation and metabolic syndrome, which refers to a cluster of health conditions often associated with overweight and obesity. These include:

  • Abdominal obesity

  • High blood pressure

  • High blood sugar levels, prediabetes, and diabetes

  • High blood triglycerides, or “bad” cholesterol

  • Low HDL, or “good,” cholesterol

In one study, people with metabolic syndrome were twice as likely to have premature ejaculation. If you have obesity, getting in better shape and losing weight may help you last longer in bed, with the added plus of giving you more sexual stamina. Quitting smoking and exercising more have also been shown to improve erectile function.

11. Drink more coffee

If you don’t drink coffee, now might be a good time to start. One small study found that drinking 100 mg of caffeine, or about 1 cup of strong coffee, two hours before intercourse helped participants last much longer during sex before ejaculating.

Avoid overdoing it with caffeine, though. Experts say 400 mg of caffeine is a safe amount to have daily. Go above that, and you might experience unfavorable side effects like an increased heart rate. If coffee isn’t your thing, there are other drinks that can help you last longer in bed.

12. Consider medication

Prescription medication may be necessary to treat PE for some people. Although there are no FDA-approved medications specifically for PE, some providers prescribe PDE5 inhibitors. These include popular erectile dysfunction drugs like sildenafil (brand name Viagra).

You may also be recommended antidepressants like selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors as an off-label treatment.

13. Look into adult circumcision

Circumcision may feel like an extreme option, but it has merit, according to one study of over 1,000 men with premature ejaculation. Participants were split into two groups, and one group underwent adult circumcision (removal of the penis foreskin). At a one-year follow-up, the group that got circumcised reported being able to last longer during sex, with better control over when they ejaculated and improved satisfaction with the sex they were having.

However, other researchers have found conflicting results indicating that a foreskin might actually help you last longer, so more research needs to be done in this area.

14. Talk to a therapist

If lifestyle changes don’t seem to be helping you last longer in bed, consider talking to a therapist. For some men, underlying mental health issues like stress, anxiety, and depression can prevent them from lasting as long as they would like to during sex. And, premature ejaculation can only add to that stress and anxiety. Working with a psychotherapist can help you get back control over your mental health, which can make life easier and sex more enjoyable.

If the cause is something physical, a certified sex therapist can guide you on techniques, such as biofeedback, visualizations, cognitive distraction, and others, that can help you last longer in bed.

Reviewed by Yael Cooperman, MD, Ro,

Written by Linnea Zielinski

Foods That Will You Burn Belly Fat

Do You Tend To Gain Weight Around Your Middle? Try Out These Seven Delicious Foods To Slim Down And Get Healthier Today.

1. Beans

“Becoming a bean lover can help you lose weight and whittle your middle,” registered dietitian Cynthia Sass told Today. Beans are loaded with soluble fiber, which eliminates inflammation in your digestive system. Having chronic inflammation can increase your weight gain.

2. Swap Your Beef For Salmon

It’s a common mistake to try to lose your fat by cutting fats completely out of your diet. It’s not just ineffective—it’s unhealthy. The trick is getting the right fats. Saturated fats, which are found in meat and dairy, aren’t going to do any favors for your weight loss goals, but swapping those fats for some types of polyunsaturated fats, like salmon, is a better choice.

Salmon won’t necessarily make you lose weight, but according to San Francisco Gate, swapping your regular meat for fish is a step in the right direction.

3. Yogurt

A study showed that obese adults who ate three servings of fat-free yogurt a day (as well as being on a reduced-calorie diet) lost significantly more fat and weight than those who were also on a decreased-calorie diet but didn’t have yogurt. The yogurt eaters lost 22% more weight and 61% more body fat than the others in the research group, according to WebMD.

4. Red Bell Peppers

Did you know a cup of bell peppers will give you three times the amount of vitamin C recommended for your daily intake? The great news is vitamin C in citrus fruit is fantastic at fighting belly fat, according to Eat This, Not That. So load up on these delicious veggies.

5. Broccoli

Similar to bell peppers, broccoli is high in vitamin C. Pair it with some hummus and you’ve got a power meal.

6. Edamame

High in fiber and nutrients, edamame acts as a great side to any meal because it helps you feel full for a long time. It’s also a remarkably low-calorie food.

Summary………..

Maintaining a trim midsection does more than make you look great—it can help you live longer. Larger waistlines are linked to a higher risk of heart disease, diabetes and even cancer. Losing weight, especially belly fat, also improves blood vessel functioning and also improves sleep quality.

A middle aged man eating a watermelon slice in the middle of a field.
It’s impossible to target belly fat specifically when you diet. But losing weight overall will help shrink your waistline; more importantly, it will help reduce the dangerous layer of visceral fat, a type of fat within the abdominal cavity that you can’t see but that heightens health risks, says Kerry Stewart, Ed.D. , director of Clinical and Research Physiology at Johns Hopkins.

Here’s how to whittle down where it matters most.

  1. Try curbing carbs instead of fats.

    When Johns Hopkins researchers compared the effects on the heart of losing weight through a low-carbohydrate diet versus a low-fat diet for six months—each containing the same amount of calories—those on a low-carb diet lost an average of 10 pounds more than those on a low-fat diet—28.9 pounds versus 18.7 pounds. An extra benefit of the low-carb diet is that it produced a higher quality of weight loss, Stewart says. With weight loss, fat is reduced, but there is also often a loss of lean tissue (muscle), which is not desirable. On both diets, there was a loss of about 2 to 3 pounds of good lean tissue along with the fat, which means that the fat loss percentage was much higher on the low-carb diet.

  2. Think eating plan, not diet.

    Ultimately, you need to pick a healthy eating plan you can stick to, Stewart says. The benefit of a low-carb approach is that it simply involves learning better food choices—no calorie-counting is necessary. In general, a low-carb way of eating shifts your intake away from problem foods—those high in carbs and sugar and without much fiber, like bread, bagels and sodas—and toward high-fiber or high-protein choices, like vegetables, beans and healthy meats.

  3. Keep moving.

    Physical activity helps burn abdominal fat. “One of the biggest benefits of exercise is that you get a lot of bang for your buck on body composition,” Stewart says. Exercise seems to work off belly fat in particular because it reduces circulating levels of insulin —which would otherwise signal the body to hang on to fat—and causes the liver to use up fatty acids, especially those nearby visceral fat deposits, he says.

    The amount of exercise you need for weight loss depends on your goals. For most people, this can mean 30 to 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise nearly every day.

  4. Lift weights.

    Adding even moderate strength training to aerobic exercise helps build lean muscle mass, which causes you to burn more calories throughout the entire day, both at rest and during exercise.

  5. Become a label reader.

    Compare and contrast brands. Some yogurts, for example, boast that they’re low in fat, but they’re higher in carbs and added sugars than others, Stewart says. Foods like gravy, mayonnaise, sauces and salad dressings often contain high amounts of fat and lots of calories.

  6. Move away from processed foods.

    The ingredients in packaged goods and snack foods are often heavy on trans fats, added sugar and added salt or sodium—three things that make it difficult to lose weight.

  7. Focus on the way your clothes fit more than reading a scale.

    As you add muscle mass and lose fat, the reading on your bathroom scale may not change much, but your pants will be looser. That’s a better mark of progress. Measured around, your waistline should be less than 35 inches if you’re a woman or less than 40 inches if you’re a man to reduce heart and diabetes risks.

  8. Hang out with health-focused friends.

    Research shows that you’re more apt to eat better and exercise more if your friends and family are doing the same

    Reference: JOHNHOPKINS | AMBERLEE LOVELL PETERSON

Hydration and Vitamin C Helps Reduce Wrinkles

What Women Want – glowing healthy-looking skin is one of those things. Beautiful clear skin, like most health outcomes, is due to many factors; good nutrition, adequate sleep, exercise, minimal alcohol usage, avoiding smoking, good skincare and, you guessed it – hydrating.

Research shows that water keeps your body hydrated and refreshed and helps maintain your skin’s elasticity. People who drink large amounts of water are less likely to suffer from scars, wrinkles, and soft lines and they won’t show as many signs of aging as those who drink little amounts of water***.   As you grow older, it is tougher for your body to retain water, so by inputting more water into your system, you are helping your body and your skin stay hydrated giving you a fresher and younger looking skin.

Dehydration in the skin weakens its defense and creates skin sensitivity, irritation, and premature aging. When your skin becomes dehydrated, you experience symptoms of dryness, flakiness, roughness, irritation, and cracking; hence the look of prematurely aged skin.

Vitamin C and Skin Aging

Vitamin C affects cells on the inside and outside of the body and its antioxidant properties can be beneficial when it comes to aging. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2007** examined links between nutrient intakes and skin aging in 4,025 women aged 40-74. It found that higher vitamin C intakes were associated with a lower likelihood of a wrinkled appearance, dryness of the skin, and a better skin-aging appearance. In addition, topical treatments with Vitamin C have been shown in some studies to reduce wrinkles.

Vitamin C helps the body produce collagen and is present in skin, muscle, and other tissues. People with a low intake of vitamin C may experience slower wound healing, as their bodies will be less able to produce collagen. The Vitamin C deficiency disease referred to as scurvy is characterised by skin fragility, bleeding gums and corkscrew hairs as well as impaired wound healing.

Vitamin C and hydration together are an important part of a great beauty plan for vibrant, glowing skin.

by Dr. Iftikhar Shah

reference: **The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Volume 86, Issue 4, October 2007, Pages 1225–1231, https://doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/86.4.1225

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