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But why, precisely, does this happen ? And is it ever a sign of a problem ? Urologist Ryan Berglund, MD, answers your questions on the subject :
Q: Why exactly do morning erections occur?
A : The sacral steel, partially of your parasympathetic nervous system aflutter system, controls erections.
Reading: Why Do Men Get Morning Erections?
The sympathetic anxious organization is what prepares you for action — the fight or flight response. The parasympathetic anxious system, on the other bridge player, is what ’ s active while your body rests and repairs itself. It ’ s creditworthy for things like digestion, getting rid of waste, and sexual arousal .
The parasympathetic nervous organization is active when you ’ rhenium asleep, so erections sometimes happen in your sleep. The term “ morning wood ” is actually a misnomer ; penises can become raise and then flaccid again respective times in the naturally of one night. You ’ re just more likely to notice it when you wake up .
Q: There are a lot of explanations out there: dreams, a full bladder, REM sleep. Do any of these play a role?
A : yes, but these truly however link to the parasympathetic nervous system nervous system. During REM sleep your parasympathetic nervous arrangement is more active, and this is when you ’ re most likely to dream — and sometimes have an erotic dream, which can surely result in an erecting and possibly ejaculation .
A wide bladder could press against and stimulate the sacral boldness.
Q: At what age is it normal for morning erections occur?
A : They can occur at any age — even male fetuses have erections in utero ! It ’ randomness very common for friends of mine who are parents to call me up to ask if it ’ s a problem that their 3-year-old has an erection. The answer I always give them is that it ’ south wholly normal .
Q: Can morning erections tell us anything about erectile dysfunction?
A : We know that erectile dysfunction is multifactorial — there are a distribute of things that have an impingement. Diminished neurological routine, vascular issues, and anatomic or structural issues all sometimes cause erectile dysfunction .
On top of all these physical causes, there are sometimes psychological causes, excessively. It ’ south sometimes hard to determine what ’ s causing it. What dawn erections can tell us is whether the issue is forcible or psychological.
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I saw a patient today who told me that he developed erectile dysfunction recently, but he ’ sulfur been under a enormous come of try at exploit. In a case like this, dawn erections would show that there ’ randomness credibly nothing physically incorrectly and that the write out is psychological .
Issues in a relationship, worry at sour, or even sexual injury can hamper erections. In those cases, eliminating the stress or conflict can solve the trouble. Counseling with a therapist trained to treat erectile dysfunction can help .
Q: Should you ever worry about morning erections?
A : priapism is a condition in which an erection lasts more than four hours. That can result in permanent dysfunction of the penis. Morning erections typically sink soon after you wake up. If you ’ re having erections that concluding significantly longer than that, it would be a good estimate to speak to your doctor of the church .