Premature ejaculation: The couple's problem?
It's not men who suffer the consequences of PE -- their partners feel the strain too, according to findings from the Latin American Society for Sexual Medicine (SLAMS).
Premature ejaculation is a problem to share, sexperts agreed at Latin America's SLAMS Congress on Sexual Medicine.
There's plenty a woman can do to help a partner who has trouble with premature ejaculation, or PE. But subtle comments or blameful behaviour can make matters worse. So it's best to get treatment together, the sexologists say.
Sixty percent of women don't know exactly what PE is, a survey of over 400 Brazilian women cited at SLAMS revealed. The good news is that most of the women, aged between 18 and 70, said they were keen to learn more about it.
Premature ejaculation is when a man orgasms before or just after penetration and sooner than he wants to. He can't control how fast he comes and it causes him distress and has other negative effects for both him and his partner.
Without meaning to, women can make things worse. Their words or actions can be the cause of anxiety and stress and this can affect PE, explained SLAMS sexologists.
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Pact of silence
"If I ask him for oral sex or to touch me, he'll just get upset." A woman might have thoughts like this in a relationship impacted by PE, said the experts. The woman's frustration builds because her sex life just doesn't satisfy.
In this scenario, she might even start to worry that her guy isn't attracted to her or that sleeping together no longer does it for him.
But instead of bringing up PE, she avoids the topic and hopes it will get better. He does too. Together, the couple form a pact of silence, SLAMS presenters explained.
Soon, intimacy gets replaced by excuses to avoid sex and instead of talking to each other the couple incorporates silence and blame. Their sex life and even their desire for each other take a turn for the worse.
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Erotic and emotional impact
When foreplay is cut short, women don't get as aroused, probably won't get wet and have little chance of reaching orgasm. Sexual problems like these are more common in women whose partner has PE, the SLAMS audience in Buenos Aires heard.
But not climaxing during sex is not the main issue. Most women don't have orgasms during intercourse no matter how long it lasts, they pointed out. What really has an impact is that when a man comes too soon, it brings intimacy or foreplay shuddering to a halt.
In turn, he feels pressure, anxiety and frustration. Guilt and depression take over and confidence drops, said SLAMS presenters referring to a survey of over 1,500 men with PE and their partners. PE has negative effects on both and this goes beyond sex, they concluded.
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'Stop-start' approaches, trying to focus on something else and other self-help treatments to make sex last longer can actually make things worse.
Not focusing on arousal means it's harder for a guy to control how fast he comes. And it can be less than enjoyable for the woman, since intimacy and her sexual satisfaction suffer.
Women are just as important to the solution as they are to the problem, SLAMS experts agreed. The PE treatment that works best depends on the couple. But therapies that involve both the guy and his partner are most likely to succeed.
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