Erectile dysfunction (ED) is very commonly experienced by men but is rarely talked about due to its social stigma. Among many reasons as to why men experience ED, high blood pressure (BP) is one of them.

Medically speaking, one of the first signs of high BP could be ED. The clogged arteries restrict blood flow to parts of the body which includes the penis as well. This results in men having difficulty getting aroused or maintaining an erection. When it comes to BP, lifestyle changes do help, but you need medical solutions in conjunction with diet and exercise. Ironically, drugs that help lower blood pressure can also result in ED as a side effect.

An example of one such medication are diuretics. They work by decreasing blood flow resulting in men having difficulty getting it up. These medications can also reduce the amount of zinc present in your body, which is needed to make testosterone, a sex hormone.

Men face sexual anxiety and pressure when faced with ED, with or without medications, but there are ways to help them through it. The first thing is, talk to your physician - this is a real issue and being embarrassed makes no sense. This is your health we're talking about! Once you find a doctor that you are comfortable sharing your concerns with, he/she may be able to help you with alternate medications with fewer side effects. You can discuss the following medicines with your doctor - ACE inhibitors, calcium channel blockers, angiotensin II receptor blockers, and alpha-blockers. Keep in mind that alternate medications are not for everybody; it depends on your medical history and your current condition and the reason behind it.

Instead of putting your mind through a psychological war, relax and be in the moment with your partner - this will help in reducing sexual anxiety, making things pleasurable and comfortable. Sex isn't always about the physical side of things; you can derive pleasure from other forms of intimacy as well.

It is essential to realize that pleasurable sex does not always have to include an erect penis. Communicate with your partner, express your medical concerns and think about other ways to help increase intimacy. Foreplay and oral sex are just two ways among many to have passionate pleasure-filled bedroom time.

This may not be an easy task for all couples. So, if things aren't getting better through communication and exploration, think about talking to a sexual health professional. There is no shame asking for help, not to mention you don't have to broadcast this to your circle of friends - just you and your partner improving on your intimacy is all. They can help you come up with ways to keep your sexual desires alive and teach you coping mechanisms to deter embarrassment and shame from an all too common medical condition.

You mustn't start or stop any medications you might be on without the approval of a physician. Both ED and high BP are medical concerns and should be taken seriously.