Why do poor sleep and sleep-disordered breathing have such apparent effects on erectile function and other elements of men’s sexual health? Scientists point to a number of likely explanations:
Poor sleep lowers testosterone. A majority of the body’s testosterone is actually produced at night, during sleep. When men don’t get enough sleep, their testosterone levels can plummet by as much as 70 percent.
Sleep apnea leads to intermittent drops in the body’s oxygen levels, and changes to blood flow throughout the body, which may contribute to ED.
- The stress and fatigue that come along with sleeping poorly are also likely significant factors in erectile dysfunction, some researchers say.
Estimates vary, but research suggests that ED affects an average of more than 18 percent of men
20 years and older. And rates are significantly higher among older men and men with health conditions such as heart disease and diabetes. That’s a lot of men whose ED might be helped, in part, by getting help for their snoring and other sleep problems.