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Sex and Diabetes While sex seems to be everywhere --television, billboards, Movies, music, and advertising--americans are still reluctant to go to the doctor to talk about a sexual problem or issue. However, many people, whether they have diabetes or not, have sexual problems. The Journal of the American Medical Association reported in February of 2000 about a survey conducted of 1,749 women and 1,410 men aged 18 to 59. The survey found sexual dysfunction is more prevalent for women (43%) than men (31%). This is one of the disease's that effect the African-american community the most as well as heart diease.(will detell later) Diabetes is a chronic disease that affects as many as 16 million Americans more then half is Afreican american. For reasons that are not yet clear, diabetes is increasing in our population to the point where public health authorities are calling diabetes an "epidemic" that requires urgent attention. You're not going to believe this, but nowhere on the website of the American Diabetic Association do they discuss whether swallowing when giving a guy oral sex impacts your blood sugar level, or if diabetic girls taste sweeter. At least they were kind enough to intimate that nobody's diabetic penis is going to get gangrene, although you might hold off on wearing a cock ring. Decreased circulation and numbness can be a problem with diabetes, and why risk making it worse? Unfortunately, exercise that's sexercise needs a diabetic caveat or two. For instance, one reader had a nasty experience while performing oral sex on her boyfriend. It was her first time, so she assumed the funny feeling she was having was from being nervous. She was kneeling over the boy when she fainted from low blood sugar, almost choking on his penis. At least she thinks the culprit was low blood sugar. Checking your blood sugar before, during and after sex is the last thing anyone feels like doing. But until you understand your body's reactions while making love, especially with a new partner, taking frequent readings is the only way you will learn. You will want to learn about your body's reactions in the minutes and hours after sex. The muscles in a horny pelvis eat up extra glucose, especially when it's been rocking back and forth. And hormones like adrenaline, nonadrenaline and prolactin are released during orgasm. They can change your blood sugar, sometimes dramatically. A healthcare provider or diabetes educator can help you with lovemaking management strategies. Should you adjust your insulin downward? Is it a good idea to inject yourself in the abdomen instead of your thigh before a love-making marathon, or does the bunny-like thrusting of hips cancel any slow-down in the insulin absorption rate that you might hope to gain? Should you eat something other than your partner before, during or after sex? It's usually best to avoid strenuous lovemaking whenever you aren't feeling well, at peak insulin action times, or if you have high blood sugar and ketones. During these days, try planting gentle kisses on your partner's neck while he or she masturbates. It is also essential to educate your partner about diabetes, and how he or she can recognize your hypoglycemic episodes and other blood sugar nastiness. They need to know how to be in charge when you aren't, and what to do. It will be much harder to explain after the fact, and you can make up for any inconvenience by giving them a particularly nice ride in the saddle or a prolonged loin licking a few days after a crash. Here are a few of many other sex-matters to consider: *Safe Sex for diabetics includes keeping a pack of Lifesavers next to the condoms and lube. *Women should watch out for blood sugar weirdness a few days before and after their periods. If you can find any menstrual-related patterns, you'll know to make adjustments in your diet, exercise, insulin, and sexual robustness. *High glucose in the blood means that more glucose is available in the vagina. This can trigger a yeast infection. Plenty of women discovered they were diabetic as a result of recurrent yeast and urinary tract infections. *Sugar binges from marijuana munchies can be a problem, although some people claim that marijuana helps even out their blood sugar. I haven't seen any studies on this, so please discuss it with your endocrinologist. Ecstasy can make you think you have boundless energy when your body is on its way to a blood sugar low, and blood sugar lows from alcohol are the most dangerous of all. Keep in mind that when you have been partying, others around you will assume that any unusual behavior is from being drunk or stoned. *Decreased vaginal lubrication and erection problems are common side effects of diabetes. These problems can be due to an interruption in nervous-system feedback, problems in circulation, or a combination of both. Store-bought lube is a great equalizer for women, and Viagra-like medications are helpful for at least 50% of males. Be sure to consult with your healthcare professional before taking erection medications. *If you are a female diabetic who gets frequent urinary tract infections, consider shacking up with a partner who is into golden showers. Peeing before and after sex helps decrease the chances of getting UTIs, so going on your guy will be killing two birds with one stone, or stream. *Be sure to wear a medical ID bracelet or tag, and if you're a man who's cruising the parks or trails, you might put an extra tag on the waistband in the front of your briefs where it's more likely to be seen. *If you can't live without getting your love parts pierced, the chances of getting an infection are higher when your blood glucose levels (BGLs) are elevated. Infections will increase the scarring around piercing sites and they will make your BGLs shoot even higher. Get thee to a health-care provider at the slightest indication of an infection. Also, tongue piercings will make your tongue swollen and sore, which will inspire you to skip meals, which can lead to a hypoglycemic episode. Diabetes doesn't mean you can't be as good or bad as anyone else in bed. It just means that you've got to plan ahead and jump through a few more hoops. Diabetes may affect sexual functioning in several ways, but there are some things you may need to look out for: Menstruation - most Women may find that the menstrual cycle affects blood sugar. If you seem to be having trouble with control around the time of your menstrual period, keep careful records of your levels around that time of the month. Look to see if there is a pattern. For example you may find that your blood sugar is higher than normal the week before your period. You may need to add extra exercise or avoid eating extra carbohydrates. You may talk to your doctor about adjusting your insulin or any other medication at this time. Lubrication - most Women with diabetes may be more prone to have problems with vaginal lubrication. You may also have trouble with sexual response because of nerve damage. There are some medications that can also affect sexual response. These are things that can be addressed, but in order to get help you need to talk to your doctor about these issues. Although it may be hard to discuss these things, the best approach is to be matter-of-fact. Impotence - most men having impotence is the consistent inability to sustain an erection enough to engage in sexual intercourse. Many men have impotence problems at some point during their lives, especially in their 50's, 60's and older. For men with diabetes, these problems can arrive 10 to 15 years earlier than for men without diabetes. Some estimates place the incidence of diabetes-related impotence in men at more than 40 percent.even with viagra and other realeted drugs don't help most of the time. Sometimes nerve disease related to diabetes causes impotence. When nerves are damaged, as can happen with the condition, the flow of blood to the penis may be lessened and so an erection can't occur. Blood vessel damage can also cause impotence. It may be that medications taken for diabetes, high blood pressure or for other conditions can be the cause. Drinking too much and smoking can also cause the problem. Your doctor can help determine how much of this problem is physical or psychological and prescribe treatment. Whatever the cause, it's important to tell your health care provider if you are experiencing impotence. Your doctor may change your medication or determine if there is a blockage in the blood vessels. Diabetic-related impotence may be treated successfully, depending on the cause. After Sex - If you use insulin, be aware that sometimes sex can cause low blood sugar levels. Test your blood sugar before having sex or consider eating just before or right afterwards as you would for exercise. Also you may want to have a snack before going to sleep at night. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- Pt 2 Sex is an important part of life and relationships. But diabetes can affect a man’s sex life. Some men with diabetes have impotence, also called erectile dysfunction or ED. ED is when a man can no longer have or keep an erection. Over time, blood vessels and nerves in the penis can become damaged. This can lead to ED. If you have ED, there is hope. There are ways to treat ED. ED is not a normal part of getting older, and it doesn’t happen to all men who have diabetes. ED can also be caused by other conditions, such as prostate or bladder surgery. Talk with your health care team about new therapies. If you have ED or some other sexual problem, it’s normal to feel embarrassed or upset. You may blame yourself or your partner. Some men feel guilty and angry. Others feel like there’s no hope. These feelings can make it hard to talk openly with your partner or your doctor. But talking about ED means you’re a step closer to getting help. In Search of Answers Today, there are many ways to treat ED and more are on the way. If one thing doesn’t work, something else might. Here are some options: Taking pills to treat ED Putting medicine called prostaglandins (prahs-ta-GLAND-ins) into your penis Using a vacuum tube and pump that you put over your penis. The pump creates a vacuum in the tube. The vacuum draws blood into the penis. A band is placed around the base of the penis so you keep the erection after you take off the vacuum tube Having surgery to put a device in the penis. Surgery can also fix blood vessels so more blood will flow to the penis Certain medicines, such as some pills for high blood pressure or depression, may cause ED. Pills for stomach ulcers or heartburn also may cause it. Ask your doctor if ED is a side effect of any of your medicines. There may be other pills you can take. Remember, talk with your doctor or diabetes educator before trying any treatment for ED or before stopping any of your medicines. It’s not easy to accept that you have ED. And it can be even harder to talk about it, especially with your partner. Even if your doctor doesn’t ask about ED, talk about it if you’re having problems. Talking about ED is the only way to learn about treatments and get help. Family Ties Diabetes doesn’t affect your ability to become a father. But you and your partner might have questions about starting a family. Talk with your health care team if you have questions or concerns. Here are some tips: Not every man with diabetes gets ED ED is not the end of your sex life You can get help. There are several treatment options Talk with your partner and your doctor or diabetes educator to get help Depression and Anxiety Diabetes raises your risk for depression. Depression is a medical condition that’s more serious than just feeling a little sad. Depression can lead to ED, and ED can cause men to feel depressed. People with diabetes sometimes feel they have a lot to worry about. They worry about their health, their future, and all the other stresses in their life. For some men, having sexual problems once in a while makes them worry about developing ED all the time. Lots of worry, also called an anxiety disorder, can lead to ED. Talk with your health care team if you have these feelings. Medicine or counseling can help with both depression and anxiety disorder. For more information about building and/or nurturing relationships, interested persons may contact me at BishopMonk1@yahoo.com
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