There is a lot of advice online about home remedies for premature ejaculation you can try. But how can you know which treatments are truly proven to help men increase ejaculation time?
While the exact definitions may vary, like other sex therapists, we define premature ejaculation (PE) as ejaculation that happens faster than either the man or his partner would like and that leads to stress or worry. Studies show that up to 30% of men have symptoms of PE, yet less than a third will get treatment. That means a lot of men are looking for answers online.
If you’re unsure which solutions are safe or effective, read on to find out which home remedies can really help to treat premature ejaculation.
Behavioral home remedies
Treatment protocols that are based on behavioral sex therapy exercises can help cure premature ejaculation. There are two main behavioral exercises that are being used by sex therapists: the start-stop method and the pause-squeeze technique.
Start and stop method
This method was first tried back in the 1950s, when urologist Dr. James Semans first realized that men could train themselves to treat premature ejaculation. The basic principle is that men with premature ejaculation don’t have the necessary body awareness to recognize the physical sensations leading up to orgasm. Since they miss these warning signs, they can easily go past the point of no return before either they or their partner are ready.
The stop and start method teach men to refamiliarize themselves with the body’s response to sex. Men will need to focus on heart and breathing rate, skin sensations, tension in the muscles and other physical sensations that happen before climax.
They can use this technique when masturbating alone or with a partner, or during sex. When the man recognizes that his sexual excitement— and the associated physical sensations— are nearing orgasm, he or his partner stops stimulation and wait for 30-60 seconds. Only when the sensations subside do they restart stimulation. The cycle is repeated until the man is able to increase ejaculation time without having to stop stimulation.
In Dr. Semans’ initial study of eight men, all of the men treated were able to delay ejaculation over time. However, using this technique is not a one-time deal. It requires patience and persistence, and men must be willing to commit to a structured program. It is essential for the plan to include different variations of stimulation with increasing levels of difficulty. This can be achieved with help from a sex therapist or with the help of the Between Us Clinic’s Premature Ejaculation Program. With a structured plan, most men should be able to treat premature ejaculation within 4-12 weeks.
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This behavioral technique was introduced by the renowned sex therapists of the 1960s and 1970s— William H. Masters and Virginia E. Johnson. Building upon Dr. Semans’ realization that some men with PE had lost awareness of body sensations during sex, they sought a way to block these men’s overly rapid ejaculation reflex. To do this, they added a crucial tool— the squeeze.
As the man recognizes that physical sensations of orgasm are approaching, he or his partner stops stimulation and firmly squeezes just below the head of the penis (penis glans). After waiting between 30 seconds to a minute for the sensations to reduce, they can resume sexual simulation.
The man (and his partner) should repeat this process several time before the man is allowed to orgasm. Like the start and stop method, after enough practice sessions the man will be able to increase ejaculation time without needing to pause or squeeze. In the 1970s, Masters and Johnson indicated that over 97.8% of men with PE will be cured after a two-week intensive program.
While more recent research have not been able to replicate the very high success rates of Dr. Semans (100%) or Drs. Masters and Johnson (97.8%), behavioral therapy has been used by sex therapists as a primary treatment for PE for the past 7 decades. Many of these newer studies were small and used shorter treatment programs than the original ones. Some studies showed a benefit of combining anti-depressants and behavioral tools.
A recent 2006 study showed impressive results for a 12-week PE treatment protocol that is based on a combination of the stop-start method and the squeeze technique. The researchers reported an average of an 8.5-fold increase in intercourse length and an increase of 67% in the partner’s sexual satisfaction level. The results were maintained at a three-month follow-up. This study included a waiting list group which reinforces its results.
Like the start and stop method, the pause-squeeze technique really requires a structured and professional training plan that the man is willing to commit to; it won’t work if it’s done occasionally or half-heartedly.
More modern research is needed to determine the best behavioral methods to delay ejaculation and which men are most likely to benefit. That is why it’s important to get help from professionals that specialize in the treatment of premature ejaculation. If you are looking to try home remedies, a great option is the Between Us Clinic’s Premature Ejaculation Program, a discreet web based app that provides a comprehensive training plan using these tested behavioral techniques.
Topical home remedies
Anesthetic creams or condoms can also be used at home to treat premature ejaculation.
Topical creams or sprays
Anesthetic creams or sprays that contain numbing agents can help men with premature ejaculation to last longer. Lidocaine is the most common numbing agent used. Typically, men should apply the cream to the flaccid penis between 10-15 minutes before sex. Men may notice that they have to experiment with the amount of cream applied: too much can lead to temporary erectile dysfunction while too little just won’t work.
It’s important to wipe off the penis (or wear a condom) before sex as the cream can be transferred to your partner and cause uncomfortable numbness. Some men (and their partners) notice local irritation or redness when using anesthetic creams.
By temporarily reducing the sensation in the penis some studies have shown that these anesthetic creams may allow some men to delay ejaculation up to six times longer.
Some common brands available over the counter are Promescent and Stud 100. Using anesthetic creams with behavioral techniques may work together to help better treat premature ejaculation.
Climax control condoms
Some men complain that condoms don’t feel natural or reduce sensation. Well, that complaint is why some condoms may help men with PE delay ejaculation!
Regular condoms may not be effective at helping men with PE, but there are special thicker condoms that help decrease penile sensation. Other condoms have numbing agents (like lidocaine) to further desensitize the penis. Unfortunately there are not many research studies on how effective these condoms are, even though many online comparison articles exist.
While climax control condoms aren’t proven to cure premature ejaculation, they work by desensitizing the penis, similar to anesthetic creams. Like the creams, these condoms can be used with behavioral techniques to improve results. Some common brands include Trojan Extended Pleasure and Durex Condom Prolong.
A quick online search will pull up many natural supplements proclaiming to treat premature ejaculation. Let’s look at some of these options to see if the research stands up to the claims.
Zinc is a natural mineral that our bodies use for many purposes, from boosting our immune system to ensuring a healthy metabolism. But, can zinc really help premature ejaculation?
Some studies in rats showed that zinc help to increase ejaculation time and increase testosterone levels while another study of 91 men with lifelong PE showed that about 60% of men taking a zinc containing supplement (EndEP) were able to increase ejaculation times by about 30 seconds.
While these studies are promising, they are animal based or small studies that need more research to show that they really help to treat premature ejaculation. Right now, we can’t recommend zinc to cure premature ejaculation.
Of course, zinc should be a natural part of a healthy diet. The National Institute of Health (NIH) recommends that men should get 11mg of zinc daily, so it can’t hurt for all men to stick to these guidelines. Some foods rich in zinc include seafood, lean meats and legumes.
Magnesium is an important mineral for supporting bone and heart health. Yet, some research suggests it may also play a role in enhancing men’s sexual function.
Some studies including this 2005 and this 2009 one showed that men with premature ejaculation have lower levels of magnesium in their ejaculate. Interestingly, men with low semen magnesium didn’t necessarily have low magnesium blood levels, suggesting that supplementing with magnesium may not directly translate to lasting longer.
Still, magnesium rich foods like bananas, avocados and spinach, are part of a healthy diet and the NIH recommends a daily intake of 400-420 mg for men.
We all know that our food choices make a huge impact on our health and wellbeing. But, can specific foods help treat premature ejaculation?
The truth is that while there may be many anecdotes and even the occasional small observation that shows that foods like ashwaganda, asparagus, garlic, ginger or green onions may help men last longer, there is too much we don’t know about how these foods affect sexual performance.
Many of the claims are based on the idea that these foods increase levels of hormones like serotonin or oxytocin, which are important for sexual function. Yet, we don’t know which men benefit from which foods or the amounts needed for a treat premature ejaculation.
That’s why most sex therapists or health care professionals don’t recommend any specific “premature ejaculation diet.” Of course, many of these whole foods, such as leafy vegetables and tuberous roots are an important part of a healthy life style and should be encouraged for all men.
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Ayurvedic herbal medicine
Ayurvedic herbal medicines are often offered as a remedy for premature ejaculation. Ayurveda refers to the traditional health system of India that uses a mix of herbs (such as kaunch beej, kamini vidrawan ras, and yauvanamrit vati), foods, manual therapies and other methods to treat disease. It is a traditional health discipline that has not been studied thoroughly in the scientific literature.
One study compared Ayurvedic herbs (Stambhanakaraka Yoga, consisting of Holy Basil and Spanish chamomille among other herbs) and psychotherapy with psychotherapy and placebo as a treatment for premature ejaculation. After two months, the men receiving ayurvedic herbs were able to delay ejaculation by 50% (0.8 minutes) and about 8% were completely cured.
However, this was a small study and review suggests that there was a high degree of bias in the results. Bias happens when researchers don’t take into account other hidden factors that affect the results, like not making sure both groups of participants were treated the same, except for the ayurvedic herbs.
Also, it’s important for men who take supplements— Ayurvedic or otherwise— to know that they can cause medical problems with long term use or when taken with other medicines or supplements.
Pelvic floor exercises
Another home remedy you may have seen online is Kegel exercises. The pelvic floor is the group of muscles between the pubic and tail bone that support the genitals, urethra and anus. They are the muscles you squeeze to stop urinating or passing gas.
While research exists looking at pelvic floor therapy as a treatment for premature ejaculation, Kegel exercises were only one part of treatment. Most men who use pelvic floor treatments to increase ejaculation time are treated by physical therapists and complete weeks of therapy. These sessions often included electrostimulation and biofeedback that may use rectal probes to assist in feedback. Men also often incorporate the behavioral therapies discussed before (stop-start method and squeeze technique).
While doing a few Kegels on your own may seem like a good option for delaying ejaculation, a Kegels-based treatment for premature ejaculation requires a detailed understanding of not only which muscles to target but also how and when to tighten and relax specific pelvic floor muscles. It requires guidance from a trained physical therapist and dedicated practice by the man. Even still there are no proven treatment protocols for pelvic floor physical therapy to help premature ejaculation. More research is needed before pelvic floor therapies become routine practice to cure premature ejaculation.
One remedy some men can try is to masturbate before sex. This can actually be quite effective since the next time the man is sexually stimulated, he will have more control. Masturbation works because of a phenomenon known as the relative refractory period. After orgasm, there is a period where men can have another erection and orgasm, but it requires much more stimulation than normal. Since men need more stimulation, they’ll be able to increase their ejaculation times the second time around.
While this is great for young men who want to last longer after masturbating, there is a long term problem with this method. As men get older, the absolute refractory period— in which no amount of stimulation will cause an erection— gets longer. For teenagers, this is only a few minutes, but for men over 50, this period can last up to 12-24 hours.
As you can imagine, masturbating before sex may be a bit short-sighted in older men with PE, who may need to wait until the next day to try again.
With the increasing popularity of yoga, its use to treat premature ejaculation has caught the public eye. Some specific yoga postures are thought to increase either the strength or the flexibility of the pelvic floor, similar to pelvic floor physical therapies. Additionally, yoga focuses on body awareness and relaxation which is the basis of many of the behavioral techniques for premature ejaculation.
Despite this, how yoga helps with premature ejaculation is still unknown and scientific research is mixed as to the benefits of yoga for delaying ejaculation. One problem is that there is no standard yoga practice for premature ejaculation and many of the studies use different yoga practices.
While yoga can be an overall component of healthy living and many men may enjoy practicing, it’s not clear that a 30 minute session of any yoga postures will cure premature ejaculation. True, yoga can help increase body awareness— a cause for some men’s PE— but there are more targeted tools to help treat premature ejaculation. For example, the start-stop method specifically increase men’s awareness of their sexual response and are standardized for treating premature ejaculation.
Mindfulness meditation, which focuses our attention to the present moment, is a method for managing anxiety. Since sexual performance anxiety is one cause of acquired premature ejaculation, mindfulness has been posited as a treatment for PE.
While small studies suggests that mindfulness can help with sexual performance anxiety and even reduce psychogenic or situational erectile dysfunctions, to our knowledge, there are no studies that show its benefit in increasing ejaculation time.
While the research may not exist, if you have anxiety or stress related to premature ejaculation, mindfulness can be a helpful tool in addition to other treatments to help delay ejaculation times.
While taking a closer look, we can see that not all home remedies are created equal. Some of the remedies offered online are based on incomplete information and may not treat PE.
It’s important to remember that all men with premature ejaculation are not the same and even a well-researched treatment that increases ejaculation time for one man may not help with premature ejaculation in another. Importantly some treatments, like the pause-squeeze technique, take time to work so men must be patient and dedicated to the programs to help with premature ejaculation. Additionally some treatments, like supplements and topical agents come with side effects that men should be aware of.
Despite the range of online options available, premature ejaculation can be treated effectively. By getting informed and seeking reputable sources, you can be well on your way to enjoyable sex that lasts longer.