What is Premature Ejaculation?
Ejaculation is the release of semen from the body. Premature ejaculation (PE) is when ejaculation happens sooner than a man or his partner would like during sex. Occasional PE is also known as rapid ejaculation, premature climax or early ejaculation. PE might not be a cause for worry. It can be frustrating if it makes sex less enjoyable and impacts relationships. But if it happens often and causes problems, your health care provider can help.
In the U.S., about 1 in 3 men 18 to 59 years old have problems with PE. The problem is often thought to be psychological, but biology may also play a role.
Medication Treatment for PE
Doctors noticed that men and women on antidepressants have delayed orgasms. Drugs such as fluoxetine, paroxetine, sertraline and clomipramine affect serotonin levels. Doctors began to use these drugs “off-label” (for a different reason than the drug’s original use) to treat PE. If one drug doesn’t work, your doctor may have you try a different drug. If the second drug doesn’t work, others will not likely help.
Drugs for PE can be taken every day or only before sex. Your health care provider will decide when you should take a drug based on your activity level. The best time to take the drug is not clear. Most doctors suggest from 2 to 6 hours before sex. PE can return if you stop taking these drugs. Most men with PE need to take these drugs on an ongoing basis.
Numbing Creams or Sprays
These creams/sprays are put on the head of the penis about 20 to 30 minutes before sex. If you leave the numbing cream/spray on your penis for longer than suggested, your erection may go away. Also, the numbing cream/spray should not be left on the exposed penis during vaginal sex because it may cause vaginal numbness. Wash the cream off your penis 5 to 10 minutes before sex. Wearing a condom can also help dull sensation.