Dr Ashwin Sharma

Article by Dr Ashwin Sharma

Why Do I Keep Losing My Erection During Sex?

Occasionally losing your erection during sex is common. It can happen for multiple reasons, like if you’re stressed or tired. However, if you struggle to get and maintain erections every time you have sex, it could be a sign of erectile dysfunction. Let’s have a look at some factors that may cause you to lose your erection, what erectile dysfunction is and how you can treat it. 

How do erections work?

Your neurological, vascular, and hormonal systems all work together to help you get an erection. When you’re sexually aroused, nerve signals cause the smooth muscle cells within the arteries of your penis to relax. This improves blood flow, which helps erectile tissues to fill with blood and become hard enough for penetrative sex. 

Why do men lose erections during sex?

Many psychological and physiological factors can disrupt the process of getting an erection.

  • Anxiety, stress, fatigue, or distractions may interfere with arousal signals from your brain, which makes it more difficult to get a firm erection.
  • Excessive alcohol intake and some recreational drugs can cause you to have weaker erections. 
  • Changes in hormone levels, blood pressure or cardiovascular health can affect blood flow to your penis.

What is erectile dysfunction (ED)?

Erectile dysfunction is the persistent inability to achieve or maintain an erection suitable for penetrative sex. ED can be caused by a variety of factors, including vascular disease, diabetes, hormonal imbalances, neurological disorders, or psychological factors. It can also be an indicator of some underlying health issues, including heart disease and metabolic conditions. 

How can you treat erectile dysfunction?

PDE5 inhibitors are a type of medication used to treat erectile dysfunction. They help to relax the blood vessels at the base of your penis, increasing blood flow and helping you achieve a firm erection. 

Some lifestyle changes can also help you get strong erections, including:

  • Reducing alcohol consumption 
  • Quitting smoking and illegal drugs
  • Lowering stress and improving your mental health 

Common treatments for erectile dysfunction

There are many popular treatments you can take to treat erectile dysfunction.

Viagra, or sildenafil, is one of the most well-known of the PDE5 medications. You take one tablet an hour before you plan to have sex, and it can help you get and maintain strong erections during a four-hour period. 

Cialis, or tadalafil, is another commonly used PDE5 inhibitor. Unlike Viagra, it comes in two forms: on-demand and daily. You take the on-demand doses an hour before sex, and they can give you reliable erections over a 36-hour period. It won’t make you have a continuous erection, but it will help you get an erection in response to sexual stimulation at any point during that time. The daily dose maintains a small amount of the drug in your system, which means you can get erections whenever you’re aroused. 

Get help with erectile dysfunction

Erection issues are common, and can be caused by a variety of factors; from health conditions to performance anxiety. The good news is, there are many clinically proven erectile dysfunction treatments available to help you achieve healthy erections and take control of your sexual health. Want to improve your sex life? Find our which erectile dysfunction treatment is best suited for you on our website.


Erectile Dysfunction Treatment

Dr Ashwin Sharma
Dr Ashwin Sharma
Dr Ashwin Sharma is a medical doctor and writer with a particular interest in health technology, artificial intelligence and medical weight loss. He completed his training at the University of Leicester and Imperial College London, and has since been exploring the intersections of medicine, technology, and communication.
Originally published April 26 2024, updated May 01 2024