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Does Lack of Sleep Cause Erectile Dysfunction?

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Surprisingly, the answer is yes. Lack of sleep is one of many lifestyle factors that can increase the risk of erectile disfunction.

The function of sleep is still not well understood by medical science, but it has been established that short sleep duration can increase the risk of several diseases, such as cardiovascular and metabolic diseases. A growing body of research1 has revealed a possible link between sleep disorders and erectile dysfunction.

A 2023 study of university students2 found that “students with poor sleep quality than in students with good sleep quality (aPR = 6.48; 95% CI: 4.58–9.17) after adjusting for age, academic year, nutritional status, and sleep apnea.”

The relationship between sleep and erectile dysfunction may be explained by the fact that lack of sleep has been shown to reduce testosterone levels3 4. One study found that skipping sleep reduces a young man’s testosterone levels by the same amount as aging 10 to 15 years.

Sufficient sleep is clearly a factor in maintaining good physical and sexual health.



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References

  1. Zhang, Fuxun; Xiong, Yang; Qin, Feng; Yuan, Jiuhong. “Short Sleep Duration and Erectile Dysfunction: A Review of the Literature.” Nature and Science of Sleep. October 2022.
    <https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9621223/>
  2. Gutierrez-Velarde, Pierina ; Valladares-Garrido, Mario J; Peralta, C. Ichiro; Vera-Ponce, Victor J; Grandez-Urbina, J. “Poor sleep quality and erectile dysfunction in students from a Peruvian University: A cross-sectional study.” Frontiers in Public Health. January 2023; Volume 11 – 2023.
    <https://doi.org/10.3389/fpubh.2023.932718>
  3. Su, Liang; Zhang, Si-zheng; Zhu, Jian; Wu, Jie; Jiao, Yong-Zheng. “Effect of partial and total sleep deprivation on serum testosterone in healthy males: a systematic review and meta-analysis.” Sleep Medicine. December 2021, Volume 88, Pages 267-273. <https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S138994572100544X>
  4. Smith, Isaac; Salazar, Ismel; RoyChoudhury, Arindam; St-Onge, Marie-Pierre. “Sleep restriction and testosterone concentrations in young healthy males: Randomized controlled studies of acute and chronic short sleep.” Sleep Health. December 2019, 5(6): 580–586. <https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6917985/>

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