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What You Should Know About Viagra

Viagra (sildenafil) is an oral medication that treats erectile malfunction in men. It works by blocking certain naturally occurring enzymes in the body, causing blood vessels to dilate and improve blood flow to the penis.

It takes an hour for the drug to work, but it will only help you if you are sexually aroused. It must be taken on an unfilled stomach as a fatty food can slow down the drug’s absorbtion.

Dosage

There are many medications used to treat erectile dysfunction (ED), but Viagra is unique among them because it works only when you’re sexually aroused. The medication helps with the muscle movements needed to create and sustain an erection by increasing blood flow through the penis, or corpora cavernosa.

It starts working about an hour after you take the tablet, but it can take less time or longer depending on how much you eat and whether you’re eating fatty foods. Viagra is usually taken once a day and works best about an hour prior to sex.

Your doctor will probably start you on 25mg of Viagra, which is the lowest dosage for most people. It’s the lowest dose that has been proven effective in clinical studies. The lower dosage may reduce the risk of side-effects, such as visual disturbances or a blue haze. It’s also a safer option if you have health conditions or take drugs that interact with Viagra.

Side effects

Besides helping men get and keep an erection, Viagra also helps blood vessels around the body to relax. This can help heart conditions such as angina pectoris. Angina pectoris is a type chest pain caused by cardiovascular issues.

In some cases, Viagra can cause mild side effects such as headache or a runny or blocked nose. You may also feel dizzy or lightheaded. If this happens, lie down or stay seated until you feel better.

Viagra may not be safe for you if you have certain health problems, such as blood cell disorders (such as sickle cell anemia or multiple myeloma), or a history of Peyronie’s disease. It can also be dangerous if you take nitrate medications such as nitroglycerin for chest pain or high blood pressure. Taking the pill with a fatty meal can affect how well it works, and consuming alcohol can decrease how long the effect lasts. Speak to your doctor about this medication.

Precautions

Viagra can cause a sudden fall in blood pressure, which can make you feel nauseous or dizzy. This is more likely if you take it with certain drugs used to treat high blood pressure or enlarged prostate, or with alcohol. Speak to your doctor before taking Viagra if you suffer from these conditions.

Avoid drinking alcohol when taking Viagra. Some side effects, such as flushing and headaches, can be made worse by alcohol.

You should not take Viagra if you have a heart condition or a history of stroke, or if you are taking nitrate drugs (such as nitroglycerin or isosorbide dinitrate/mononitrate, used to treat chest pain). Nitrates can block the action of Viagra. This medication can cause a painful and long-lasting erection called priapism. Priapism can damage your penis and lead to permanent ED.

Other Drugs

If a person takes Viagra for a long period of time, it may affect their ability to induce an erection naturally. This may lead to a psychological dependency on Viagra and a desire to take it even when there is no sexual need. This can also lead to relational problems and distress.

People with certain eye conditions, such as non-arteritic posterior ischemic optic Neuropathy (NAION) and hereditary retinitis Pigmentosa, should not take Viagra because it can cause a sudden loss of sight in one or both of their eyes. It should be used with caution by people who have low pressure, as it can cause blood pressure to drop to unsafe levels.

Other medications such as over-the-counter ibuprofen, alpha-blocker drugs such as Terazosin or doxazosin (used for high blood pressure treatment and benign prostatic hyperplasia), and alpha blocker medication like terazosin and the doxazosin can interact with Viagra. These interactions can decrease the effectiveness of the drug or cause side effects.