Losing erections when using a condom? There are actually documented studies when it comes to condom associated erectile problems.
In a 2015 study with 479 young male participants aged between 18 and 24, 220 men experienced condom associated erectile problems during condom application and another 229 men experienced condom associated erectile problems while penetrating their partner.
The vast majority of men in this study experienced some difficulty maintaining their erection when having sex with a condom. But, why is that? We have been told “Have safe sex, use a condom!” our whole lives, but no one prepared us for the fact that this trusty (and necessary) contraceptive might put a damper on our party. In this article, we outline why condoms might cause some men to lose their erections and what you can do to maintain your erection, condom, or not.
That awkward moment when...The foreplay is going great, she’s enjoying herself, you are really enjoying yourself - and she’s given you a look that now it’s time to reach for the condom. This pause in sexual stimulation while fumbling around for a condom, and trying to put it on correctly could quickly deflate your giddy-up.
This is common for many men. This might be because your sexual arousal and ultimately, your erection, begins in your brain.
When you are summoned to don a condom, you might begin worrying if you can perform, and maintain your erection while wearing a condom. Thus, a self-fulfilling prophecy wrecks havoc. Getting in your head about whether or not you can sexually perform while wearing a condom might cause sexual performance anxiety.
The idea of wearing a condom might be synonymous with being uncomfortable, lacking sensation or you might just dislike the layer between yourself and your partner. All of this worry can cause what is called performance anxiety induced situational erectile dysfunction. Sexual performance anxiety is the leading psychological cause of erectile dysfunction
Newcomers to condoms might dislike the lack of direct stimulation they’ve been used to. It’s an understandable learning curve. This might just take some time to get used to. If you are new to condoms make sure you try various brands, and types of condoms. It’s a misconception that all condoms are created equally. There are many options to choose from. It’s not a one size fits all situation.
The best way to get the most stimulation when using a condom is to make sure your condom fits you correctly. Which brings us to the next point...
A condom that is too big will flop around and feel like you have a sheet between you and our partner - not enjoyable for anyone. A condom that is too tight might actually cut circulation to your penis, causing erectile difficulties. (Not to mention a condom that is too small is liable to break under the tight fit pressure.)
A condom that fits just right should feel like a second skin. (We know, this is seriously a Goldilocks situation here. Stay patient and try out many options.) Try measuring the length and girth of your penis with a measuring tape to figure out what condom is the best fit for you.
Helpful how-to: This Is The Best Way to Measure Penis Length and Girth
If you’ve fitted your condom, and you still want to feel more sensation while using a condom - try ribbed for his pleasure condoms. These condoms have textural additives (some with dots and ridges) to the design of the condom to increase the sensation of the motion of the ocean.
We know this doesn’t sound like the best solo pleasure situation, but this might allow you to get more comfortable with using condoms and navigating the different sensations you might feel. That way when the time comes to wear a condom with a partner, you’ll be a pro at putting it on and be used to the sensation. This also might help break any negative association with condoms.
Talk to your partner about alternative options Sometimes no matter how hard we try, things don’t pan out. That’s okay.
If having sex with a condom is genuinely impossible for you, talk to your partner about getting tested for STDs, seeing each other exclusively, and employing another form of birth control.
Short-term barrier methods:
Unsupported methods of contraception
A golden rule of any sexual encounter, never pressure or persuade. If condoms are not a good option for you, instead, have a conversation about your contraceptive options.
If you find your erectile problems are not solely associated with condoms and seem to be a consistent issue, reach out to your primary care physician. Strut offers free online doctor’s visits with our medical team and we would be happy to help you navigate any erectile issue you might be experiencing.