How many of you reading this article indulge in poppers? How many of you are on blood pressure medication? How many of you are treating your erectile dysfunction with Cialis or Viagra? How many of you are in all three categories?

A friend of mine had a play date recently. The guy was tied to the sling stand and everything was going well, erections were had by all, and then the poppers / ”video head cleaner” came out. Not too long after the hit of poppers the guy tied to the sling stand started to panic and needed to be untied quickly, which was being done by my friend, as his play date had passed out on him. Keep in mind that there is also a size difference between the two, and my friend was on the shorter end of the deal, lugging his larger play date to the bed, half passed out, after having a few hits of poppers, sorry, “video head cleaner.” My friend did not know why the guy had passed out and could not get him to wake up and was trying to think of what to do next, as his date lay in his bed unconscious and losing control of other bodily functions, definitely not part of the prescribed scene! 911 was about to be called when the guy thankfully returned to the conscious world and revealed that he had taken one of the ED pills before coming over. It is fairly common knowledge that you don’t mix Viagra, Cialis, or any other ED med with poppers but very few people understand why.

ED medications are good at increasing blood flow into the penis and clitoris but they don’t address what I often find is a musculoskeletal issue, meaning the muscles in the pelvis are not working properly and are too tight and/or too weak, plus the bones of the pelvis may not be aligned properly. This is why seeking help from a pelvic physical therapist focusing on men’s health is key. In order to get an erection, certain pelvic muscles have to be fairly relaxed in order to allow blood to flow into the penis or the clitoris. No one gets an erection when chased by a bear, unless it is a really cute bear! ED medications increase blood flow into the penis or clitoris by relaxing the muscles around the arteries going into the penis. Guess what blood pressure medications do … the same thing: they relax the muscles around your arteries so they can expand and lower your blood pressure. Poppers? They too do the same thing … they also relax the muscles of the arteries to allow more blood flow through a bigger pipe. When taken in combination it can spell disaster. Fortunately the above story has a happy ending and no one was taken to the hospital, but it does remind us of the risks we sometimes take in order to have the ultimate sexual experience. Let’s face it, sex is important and erections are an important part of sex.

Passing out from low blood pressure not only has the obvious risk of injury as you fall over, hitting your head on the nightstand or other objects, but you are unconscious and unresponsive. You have no control over what is being done to you while you are unconscious. I’ve had friends that went to parties (don’t look so shocked … I see you at the Code Bar!) and have woken up to people on top of them and doing things to them. Risky!

Recommendations: shift your diet and activity level to get off of blood pressure medications if you can. The other item that is in our power is to get your erectile dysfunction fixed. Medications and injections are temporary and only mask the underlying cause: muscle strength and coordination. This is where physical therapy comes in, to evaluate and address the cause of your erectile dysfunction and treat it naturally so you no longer have to take pills and injections to have a good time, and you can continue to use your “video head cleaner” safely. We will probably also help your bladder issues and your back pain as they are all inter-related!