Though it is one of the most popular and widely used medications available for erectile dysfunction, Cialis is not suitable for everyone.

Those with certain medical conditions or taking other medicines will not be able to buy and administer Cialis, as it may aggravate their illness or affect the function of other prescription treatments.

So for those who are living with erectile dysfunction but aren’t ready or able to use prescription medication, what alternatives are available?

Let’s take a look:

Herbal remedies

The first and most important aspect of herbal remedies to consider is that in the case of erectile dysfunction, and with respect to several other conditions too, the efficacy (and indeed safety) of such treatments has not been rigorously studied.

It is therefore important before embarking on a course of treatment with any herbal remedies to first speak to your doctor to ensure that it is safe; and if they do express safety concerns, to consider other options.

Korean red ginseng, otherwise known as panax ginseng, is one herbal extract which has been lauded in the press as a viable natural treatment for erectile dysfunction. It is widely available over-the-counter in capsule form.

However, in clinical studies, it has only produced mildly favourable results in comparison to placebo; and one meta-analysis determined that more research needed to be done in order to identify whether or not korean red ginseng produced any significant erectile benefits.

Horny goat weed, the name given to epimedium, is another herbal option some have turned to when attempting to treat ED. Icariin, the functioning constituent in epimedium, is thought to have PDE5 inhibiting qualities much like tadalafil in Cialis, which boosts the activity of nitric oxide in the body, helping to increase blood flow to the penis.

Studies however are once again sparse; icariin has shown positive results in improving erectile function in diabetic rats, and has been successful in inhibiting PDE5 in laboratory conditions, but whether or not it is effective at medicating impotence in humans is not yet clear.

Ginkgo biloba is a tree extract again sold in capsule form, but is also available as a liquid which can be mixed with water. Like the above, it is thought to facilitate blood flow by increasing nitric oxide activity.

It has been tested on subjects experiencing more general sexual dysfunction induced by SSRI medication and produced positive results, but research with regard to erectile potency in particular is insufficient.

Hormone supplements

Male sexual function relies on testosterone production, and can become compromised in individuals who have a low presence of this hormone.

Dehydroepiandrosterone, known also as DHEA, is a form of testosterone replacement therapy, and has shown to be conducive towards healthy libido and erectile potency.

The long-term health effects of this treatment however have not been thoroughly assessed and, consequently, doctors tend to discourage its use when treating impotence.

Acupuncture

The ancient Chinese practice of inserting needles into various points in the body has been championed as a healer of so many physical and mental ailments, including erectile dysfunction.

Clinical studies into the use of this treatment are yet again thin on the ground. One study found it to to be beneficial in treating those patients with psychogenic-induced instances. But in this experiment, acupuncture was also accompanied by discussion of the condition and results; which those undertaking the research equated to a level of therapy.

Once more, practices such as this one are something which an individual should not embark upon without having first consulted with their physician.

Lifestyle changes

Making lifestyle adjustments is perhaps the most effective course of action someone with erectile dysfunction can take, whether or not they are able to take prescription medication such as Cialis.

Addressing those concerns that may be causing symptoms is usually the first thing a doctor will do; as impotence can on occasion be an early indicator of an underlying health problem.

Vascular flow to the penis can become inhibited by conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity. With this in mind, it is important for those who are experiencing symptoms to make sure they’re getting enough exercise and eating a healthy diet.

Smoking, drinking alcohol to excess and drug use can often be causes of erectile dysfunction. Keeping your alcohol intake within recommended limits will help to reduce the likelihood of encountering poor blood flow, as will quitting smoking (if you do smoke) and avoiding the use of recreational drugs.

You can find out more about whether or not Cialis may be suitable for you by consulting our information page.