- Over-the-Counter Drugs
- Prescription Drugs
What are Sexual Performance Drugs?Prescription sexual performance medications treat erectile dysfunction or impotence. Common FDA approved brand names include Cialis, Levitra and Viagra. These vasodilators function by dilating blood vessels, making it easier to achieve an erection.
Viagra slang names include Mr. Blue, Blue Diamond, Blue Bomber and Vitamin-V.
How are Sexual Performance Drugs abused?Erectile dysfunction drugs are abused when they are taken in higher than recommended doses or in combination with other drugs. Drug combinations threaten proper heart function.
Teenagers and adults who overindulge in alcohol, sometimes take erectile dysfunction medications to counteract alcohol’s negative effects on sexual performance. Because erectile dysfunction medications lower blood pressure, and alcohol can do the same, this may drop blood pressure to dangerous lows.
Erectile dysfunction drugs should never be taken in combination with nitrates used to relieve angina symptoms. This mixture may trigger the life-threatening condition hypotension, causing abnormally low blood pressure. A stroke or heart attack can result.
Young people, taking nitrates recreationally, can also fall victim to hypotension. The popular party drugs “poppers” are actually amyl nitrates. Club revelers inhale amyl nitrates in an effort to enhance sexual experiences. Taking erectile dysfunction drugs with nitrates has lead to death.
Other illegal drugs known to impair the ability to achieve an erection include cocaine, methamphetamines and Ecstasy. Partiers often ingest these illicit drugs in combination with erectile dysfunction drugs. Adverse changes in heart rate, body temperature and blood pressure place strain on body functions.
Mixing Ecstasy and Viagra together to intensify euphoria has been coined “sextasy.” This drug cocktail is also referred to as “trail mix” or “hammerheading.” Doctors worry that a serotonin syndrome interaction may occur. Excessive serotonin buildup can lead to high fever, irregular heartbeat, seizures, coma and death.
Another concern is the impaired judgment produced under the influence of these drug combinations. Reports indicate a lack of safe sex practices, and increase in sex partners, when erectile dysfunction medications are taken without prescriptions or mixed with other drugs.
How do Sexual Performance Drugs affect a person?Sexual performance drugs help maintain erections by increasing blood flow to, and relaxing the smooth muscle of, the penis. A doctor should determine the correct dose for a patient’s needs.
Levitra and Viagra are taken 30 to 60 minutes before sexual activity with effects lasting from four to eight hours. Cialis works within 30 minutes from ingestion and its effects can last from eight to 36 hours.
Many people falsely believe erectile dysfunction drugs to be aphrodisiacs. In reality, sexual arousal and stimulation must occur to achieve an erection with these medications.
What are the health effects/risks of using Sexual Performance Drugs?Side effects can include nasal congestion, headaches, blurred vision, indigestion, muscle pain, sensitivity to light, color-tinged sight, flushing of the face and upset stomach. In a few rare cases, optic nerve damage or sudden hearing loss has been reported after taking sexual performance medications.
A serious side effect called priapism can occur. Men suffering from priapism may experience a painful erection lasting two hours or more. If this condition persists for over four hours, permanent tissue damage may result.
If erectile dysfunction medications are combined with other drugs, or used in incorrect dosages, consequences can include hypotension, heart attack, stroke or death.