Premature Ejaculation or PE is the most common sexual complaint among men. It is estimated that up to 40% of men get this problem at some point in their life. PE is commonly defined as when a man ejaculated within 2 minutes of penetration. This definition is based on statistics indicating that six and a half minutes is the average IELT or Intravaginal Ejaculation Latency Time for 18 – 30 year olds.
But these figures are disputed by many experts who focus on the sense of satisfaction and fulfilment experienced by the participants. The viewpoint of these specialists is that if the couple are satisfied by 2 minutes of IELT then premature ejaculation is not correct diagnosis. This brings us to the widely accepted view that if the man is ejaculating before he or his partner are satisfied or before he wants to, then he may be suffering from PE. In other words, if you think you have PE, you probably do.
Premature Ejaculation is a complex condition with potentially multiple causes. It is also important to understand that it is quite often temporary. Previously it was believed to be invariably caused by psychological issues, but this is no longer the case. PE is now correctly understood to have multiple potential causes and even complex causes with several roots. Doctors also tend to classify PE into one of two types as a “complaint,” meaning it has occurred at some point in a man’s life after he has previously enjoyed normal ejaculatory functions, and a “syndrome” where PE is a lifelong condition.
PE can be caused by a number of physical conditions such as nerve damage, neurological disorders, or prostate problems. A doctor may also determine that you have low levels of serotonin and prescribe anti-depressants. But for the vast majority of men with “acquired” PE, the cause is most likely psychological, triggered by depression, stress, partner difficulties, or a combination of these.
If PE occurs more than once, a cycle of negativity can be set in motion. In cases like this, the man approaches sex with an elevated anxiety level, concerned about his performance. Consequently his stress level is high and he is in effect setting up a self-fulfilling event. An added complication can be erectile dysfunction. If a man is concerned about maintaining an erection, he is most likely to hurry, making it easy to get over excited.
It is important to understand the arousal process and recognise the physical and mental trigger the emission phase, experienced as a ‘tingly feeling’ just before ejaculation and wifely acknowledged as the ‘point of no return.’ Focusing on sensual rather than sexual thoughts and images during the arousal period and while maintaining physical contact is a technique many sex therapist advocate. Some therapists recommend physical exercises too, particularly the strengthening of the perineum muscles. These play a vital role in both delaying and controlling ejaculation.
For most men with “acquired” PE, the problem is temporary and can be resolved by behaviour therapy, either self-guided, or with a therapist. This therapy can be supplemented with physical aids such as the use of a desensitising cream. Many men have found Emla Cream effective as it desensitises a hyper sensitive penis and makes ejaculation control so much easier.