7 Causes of Erectile Dysfunction in Your 20s

Erectile dysfunction causes in young adults

At one time or another, just about every guy will lose his erection at an inopportune time. And while the immediate reaction may be disappointment and concern, it’s not so surprising when you stop and think about all the factors involved in an erection – blood flow, muscle reaction, friction, chemistry, nerve impulses and more. However, for an otherwise healthy man in his 20s, there are few bodily issues that are more troublesome than erectile dysfunction, which is typically defined as the inability to get and keep an erection firm enough for sex.

The good news is that the underlying cause of erectile dysfunction can usually be identified, and then with treatment, go away. To get at the root of the cause, I talk with young men about the following scenarios that can impact one’s mojo:

Causes of Erectile Dysfunction

High-stress levels

In younger men, erectile dysfunction is most often related to stress. When stressed or managing high anxiety, how your brain sends messages to the penis to allow extra blood flow is affected.

Performance anxiety

When a guy has anxiety about anything, including his ability to perform in bed, his hormones send out signals that clamp down on his blood vessels, including those that cause an erection. Ways to deal with this issue include talking to your partner, relaxation techniques, and getting physically fit.

Chronic masturbation

As an activity that releases endorphins that temporarily elevates your mood, masturbation can work as a drug that distracts you from focusing on any issues that might be stressing you out. It can also make it more difficult to enjoy sex with a partner.


If you’re watching a lot of porn, this can cause unrealistic attitudes toward sex that you and your partner may not be able to measure up to. This can interfere with your ability to become sexually stimulated without porn.

Overuse of alcohol or drugs

Some men who smoke or drink to excess or who take recreational drugs have found that their ability to maintain an erection improves when they reduce or eliminate this behavior.

Health issues

A wide range of medical conditions and prescription medications can affect your ability to get and maintain an erection. These conditions can be related to obesity, diabetes, blood pressure and more – and these issues generally can affect men of any age.

Low testosterone

Men with low levels of the testosterone hormone can experience a range of symptoms, including fatigue, depression and erectile dysfunction. Testosterone replacement therapy has helped many men overcome this condition.

This list is only the start of a discussion around what may be causing your erectile dysfunction, as it can get pretty complicated. If you are experiencing ED, I will say that if you have regular morning erections or if you can masturbate to orgasm, then you know that your body can work the way it’s supposed to work.

Improving the Quality of Your Erections

The other good news is that there are ways to improve the quality of your erections. Your solution could come from:

  • Better communication with your partner
  • Therapy or lifestyle changes ranging from more exercise and a healthier diet to less masturbation and porn
  • Medications such as Viagra, Levitra and Cialis, which help increase blood flow to the penis. In fact, just taking these medications a few times can help many men – especially younger ones – get over performance anxiety.

If you’re experiencing erectile dysfunction in your 20s or at any age, it’s a good idea to talk to an experienced urologist who can help you identify the underlying cause, as well as rule out any medical conditions that might be contributing to your symptoms.  By reviewing your lifestyle and your situation with a men’s health expert, you should be on your way to enjoying more reliable erections again.

If you want to find out more about erectile dysfunction, testosterone therapy, erectile dysfunction medication, or other men’s health issues, contact Dr. Harry Fisch in New York to request a consultation.

Request a Consultation with Dr. Fisch