Premature Ejaculation: Breaking the Silence (cont.)
I think that really good physicians should bring it up to their patients and make them feel comfortable. They should have comfort themselves with the topic and make sure the patient feels comfort so they can have an honest dialogue about this. Through a questionnaire or just talking, doctors should bring this topic up and try to find out if their patients have this problem.
Around 10% to 12% of all men have erectile dysfunction and 30% have premature ejaculation. These are common problems that really affect the quality of life.
Obviously, the thing not to do, since distress is part of the whole process, is make the person feel guilty about it. Don't make him feel like if he has premature ejaculation that he's a bad person or that he's not the sexual partner that you are looking for. This will cause additional distress.
Women tend, and I'm saying this kind of generally, they tend to be the health care providers or encouragers for their family, including their husbands and they tend to be much more health conscious. In my opinion as an educator in medicine, men need to be more responsible for their own health.
To answer the question, I think that if a woman whose partner has premature ejaculation she should encourage the man to go seek help. Men need to be responsible, but they probably need some encouragement.
I would have you go see a urologist and try some treatments. Again, sadly, there's nothing that's specific for premature ejaculation, but there's no harm in trying to get some treatment now to see if you can make it better. The alternative is to wait until something does come out that is specific for premature ejaculation, which again, hopefully will be soon.
Because ED has been out there on television and passed around in the media, people now feel more comfortable talking about erectile dysfunction. They are not as stigmatized about it knowing that people like Bob Dole and others have it, so they feel better about it. But there's no one out there that has gotten up to say, "I have premature ejaculation" so there's a lot of embarrassment. They are thinking that they are the only ones with this problem because they are not hearing that anybody else has it, so I can see why there would be a lot of embarrassment and stigma attached to it.
I'm sorry that people feel this way, and I think the best thing we can do is let them know that it's not just them, that they can seek help and that in the future we will have even better help for them.
This questionnaire could be as simple as one question: Do you have premature ejaculation? If the man answers yes, then the physician can follow it up with questions such as:
The doctor can then follow up with more questions. It can be just as simple as that.
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