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Premature Ejaculation

Premature Ejaculation

Premature ejaculation (PE) can be a source of embarrassment for men and a source of frustration for their partners. There is no set time for how long it takes for a man to ejaculate (come) during sex but premature ejaculation is when a man ejaculates quicker than he or his partner wishes. In the majority of PE cases the man either ejaculates before entering his partner’s vagina or within a minute of being inside. This can lead to tension in a couple’s sexual relationship and lead to performance anxiety in men.

The condition is common. According to The British Association of Urological Surgeons between 20-30% of men are thought to have premature ejaculation.


Ejaculating (coming) too quickly - often before entering the vagina or within a minute of penetration.

What cases Premature Ejaculation?

Premature ejaculation is often psychological. It may be a conditioned behaviour - for example as a teenager you may have got used to ejaculating quickly to avoid being caught masturbating.

The condition can also have biological causes. If a man has low levels of the hormone ‘prolactin’ (which normally dampens sexual arousal) they may get aroused very quickly and ejaculate soon after.

Some medical conditions may cause premature ejaculation including high blood pressure and prostate disease. Alcohol and recreational drugs can also cause this problem, as can stress and depression.

How is Premature Ejaculation treated?

Sprays containing the local anaesthetic lidocaine are available which when sprayed onto the penis, reduce its sensitivity and may help delay ejaculation.

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are increasingly being prescribed to treat premature ejaculation. These are really antidepressants but they have the helpful side-effect of delaying ejaculation.

Sex therapy can be used to treat premature ejaculation caused by psychological factors.

Alternative Therapies & Self-help:

Some men find increasing the frequency of ejaculations helps them to come less quickly. It may help to masturbate an hour or two before sex.

Another useful tip is the squeeze technique:

Either you or your partner should stimulate your penis until just before you come. You should then rest without stimulation for 30 to 60 seconds, then restart stimulating, and stopping short of ejaculation. You should repeat this cycle of stimulation, rest and further stimulation, five or six times before allowing yourself to ejaculate. Squeezing, just below the head of the penis between stimulations will help delay ejaculation. This technique should be used every time you masturbate or have sex with your partner. Slowly, you will find that you are able to delay ejaculation for a much longer time.

Other tips include wearing a thick condom to decrease sensitivity, breathing deeply to quell the ejaculation reflex, taking breaks during sex and thinking of something unconnected with sex when you feel a climax is near.