Skip to content

Men's Health

Viagra: How Young Is Too Young?

Optimizing Performance
Font Size
A
A
A

continued...

What Viagra cannot do is increase your sexual appetite or make you ejaculate if you have problems reaching orgasm. Ira Sharlip, urologist in San Francisco, says you shouldn't expect your erections to reach staggering new proportions, either. "I don't believe that Viagra can increase an erection beyond 100% of normal," he says.

"Viagra is a super-safe drug," Murdock says, assuming you have a healthy heart and don't take nitrates.

Nitrates include nitroglycerin -- a drug that many men take for chest pain from heart disease -- and "poppers." Poppers are little vials of amyl or butyl nitrate. Breaking the vial releases nitrate vapor, which gives a brief high when inhaled. It's most often used to enhance sexual pleasure, and mostly by gay men. Poppers are not all that safe to use on their own, and they're especially dangerous when you're on Viagra.

Nitrates widen blood vessels, and Viagra increases that effect. Mixing the two can cause your blood pressure to drop drastically. A sudden drop in blood pressure can make you pass out, and you may die if your blood pressure stays too low for too long.

Preservatives like sodium nitrate -- found in processed food -- do not cause this problem, so you won't die from eating a hot dog while on Viagra. Even so, it's best to take it on an empty stomach. That way, the drug absorbs into your bloodstream faster. Wine may contain nitrates, but not the kind that cause problems with Viagra. It's fine to play some Marvin Gaye on the stereo and sip a glass of Chardonnay, if that's what puts you in the mood.

Although you may be tempted to order Viagra discreetly from one of the hundreds of Web sites that sell it, don't. "It's bad medicine," Murdock says. You really must bring your doctor into your sex life if you want to use Viagra.

When you buy from an online pharmacy, you just have to answer some health questions before you proceed to the checkout page. If you answer honestly -- and that might be a big "if" for those determined to get what they want -- the questionnaire may catch some possible complications. But the pharmacists who fill your order don't know your medical history, and no questionnaire can diagnose the root cause of your problem. Erectile dysfunction can have serious underlying causes, like diabetes, heart disease, liver disease, or thyroid disease.

Today on WebMD

man coughing
Men shouldn’t ignore.
man swinging in hammock
And how to get out it.
 
shaving tools
On your shaving skills.
muscular man flexing
Four facts that matter.
 
Food Men 10 Foods Boost Male Health
Slideshow
Thoughtful man sitting on bed
Quiz
 
Man taking blood pressure
Slideshow
doctor holding syringe
Slideshow
 

Loaded with tips to help you avoid food allergy triggers.

Loading ...

Sending your email...

This feature is temporarily unavailable. Please try again later.

Thanks!

Now check your email account on your mobile phone to download your new app.

Condom Quiz
Quiz
thumbnail_angry_couple_in_bed
Slideshow
 
man running
Quiz
older couple in bed
Video