Written by the UPGUYS Editorial Team
Published on June 14, 2022
Did you know that 74% of sampled herbal dietary supplements contained sildenafil? Many herbal supplements don't list these hidden ingredients, posing an increased risk for your health and wellness.
Taking sildenafil without medical guidance could lead to several adverse effects. For those who take nitrates, it can result in severe hypotension and fainting.
But what is sildenafil for as a prescription? You might recognize it by its more popular name: Viagra. The "little blue pill" has made headlines for decades, but is there any truth behind its effects on erection quality?
Luckily, we have put together a complete guide that goes over everything you need to know about sildenafil, including alternatives. Keep reading on for more information!
In this article, we talk about the following:
Sildenafil is a prescription medication that acts as vasodilating agent. It falls under the classification of PDE5 inhibitors, along with other similar drugs, such as:
Initially, sildenafil (Viagra) was used in studies in the late 1990s to see how it impacted hypertensive patients. Instead, they found that it affected patients who had difficulties maintaining or getting an erection.
What is the drug sildenafil used for? Patients primarily use sildenafil as prescribed for erection quality. Sildenafil can help men who have problems getting or maintaining an erection.
Now that you can answer the commonly searched question, "what is sildenafil used to treat," you may wonder how it works and if it is right for you.
This article is written for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. The information provided in the articles cannot and should not replace advice from a healthcare professional. Talk to your healthcare provider about any physical or mental health concerns or the risks and benefits of any treatment or medication.
Knowing more about "what sildenafil is used for" helps you understand its mechanism of action. As mentioned earlier, sildenafil works as a PDE5 inhibitor and has various effects on the body. Primarily, it works within the corpus cavernosum and penile arteries through a few simple steps:
The PDE5 enzyme degrades cGMP, leading to higher amounts in penile arteries and vasoconstriction. Since PDE5 inhibitors block this initial process, it helps with blood flow and smooth muscle cell vessel relaxation.
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Like other prescription medications and PDE5 inhibitors, sildenafil has some common side effects. Luckily, these should be mild and not cause any long-term complications.
If you experience an allergic reaction, stop taking the medication and talk to your provider or visit a medical center. Here are some of the most common sildenafil side effects:
Very common side effects that occurred in over 10% of study participants were:
While this may just be a nuisance for some, talk to your doctor if it becomes a problem.
Read more: Sildenafil Warnings & Precautions
Sildenafil comes in an oral tablet form that should be taken with a full glass of water. There are three sildenafil dosages available:
Typically, your physician will start you at a lower dosage. You should take it approximately 30 minutes to two hours before sexual intercourse.
Remember, you need physical stimulation for an erection to occur. Sildenafil does not cause spontaneous erections. Additionally, you should only take sildenafil once daily or as needed.
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Do not increase your dose or frequency or combine it with other PDE5 inhibitors without consulting your physician. Unfortunately, combining or taking too much sildenafil can cause priapism.
Priapism is a long-lasting and painful erection that lasts more than four hours. It requires immediate medical attention and could potentially lead to long-term complications.
Do not increase your sildenafil dose or frequency or combine it with other PDE5 inhibitors without consulting your physician. Unfortunately, combining or taking too much sildenafil can cause priapism.
How much will you end up paying for sildenafil? It depends on a few factors, such as:
You are already saving money choosing sildenafil over Viagra. Brand-name prescription medications can cost upwards of 70% more than generic versions. Higher dosages might also cost more, including using local pharmacies.
Instead, online pharmacies such as UPGUYS help you save money and streamlines the process of prescription refills and scripts.
Sildenafil storage is similar to other prescription medications. Avoid exposing it to sunlight, humidity, or hot environments. Instead, store sildenafil in a cool, dark, and dry environment such as a kitchen cabinet or drawer.
Ensure you keep sildenafil away from pets, children, or vulnerable adults.
Is there a sildenafil alternative for erectile dysfunction? Yes! For starters, you could opt for the brand-name version, Viagra.
Although Viagra will cost more, it contains different inactive ingredients. If you have an allergic reaction to sildenafil, consider swapping to Viagra. Otherwise, there are other PDE5 inhibitors, such as:
Currently, there is not a Stendra generic version available for purchase. It is a newer PDE5 inhibitor and will likely cost much more. Instead, Cialis, Levitra, and their generic versions are excellent alternatives.
They have similar mechanisms of action but different active ingredients. Levitra is the most similar to sildenafil, with nearly identical half-lives. They are both designed to be taken as needed.
Cialis is a bit different from Levitra and Viagra. There are two types of Cialis:
Daily Cialis is meant for long-term erection difficulties and does not require you to take it right before sexual intercourse. Instead, you will take it at the same each day, and it has a much longer half-life of nearly 36 hours.
Read more: Unsafe Interactions With Sildenafil (Viagra)
The "little blue pill" has created a lot of hype over the years. Rather than turning to the internet for your most pressing questions, UPGUYS has you covered. Here are five common FAQs regarding sildenafil.
1- Is Sildenafil Good for Erectile Dysfunction?
Yes. Sildenafil, or Viagra, was the first PDE5 inhibitor with excellent success rates. Studies show that it is a front-line treatment for helping men with difficulties getting or maintaining an erection.
PDE5 drugs like sildenafil also showed improvements in patients' depression scores.
2- Does Sildenafil Cure Erectile Dysfunction?
Does sildenafil work, and can it cure erectile dysfunction? The answer is more convoluted than that. There are several causes for difficulties getting an erection, although the two primary ones are:
Stress, anxiety, and relationship challenges can affect erection quality. These issues are closely tied to psychological causes and are best handled with therapy or stress-reducing activities.
Physical causes of erectile dysfunction include:
In cases where there is limited blood flow to the penile arteries, PDE5 inhibitors could help reduce symptoms.
3- Is Sildenafil the Same as Viagra?
Yes, sildenafil and Viagra contain the same active ingredient. They are both PDE5 inhibitors and result in similar mechanisms of action.
The primary difference between them is the inactive ingredients. Sildenafil contains different additives that may cause an allergic reaction. If you have an adverse outcome with sildenafil, Viagra could still be a viable option.
4- Can You Combine Sildenafil and Alcohol?
Talk to your doctor first about drinking while on sildenafil. In many cases, drinking alcohol while taking PDE5 inhibitors could exacerbate side effects like:
These three side effects are common with sildenafil and alcohol and may increase their likelihood or severity. Excessive drinking can also negatively impact erection quality and negate sildenafil's effects.
5- Does Insurance Cover Sildenafil?
Typically, insurance does not cover PDE5 inhibitors for men who have difficulty getting or maintaining an erection. However, it depends on your coverage and insurance provider. For the best results, save your receipt from UPGUYS and submit it to your insurance.
Although insurance usually won't cover PDE5 inhibitors, it doesn't mean you should let your sexual intimacy suffer. Talk to your doctor about cost-savings options, switching to generic versions, or purchasing in bulk.
Have you been curious about sildenafil and what it is used for? Now that you know more about sildenafil and its function, it is time to get started with a prescription.
They will talk to you about your symptoms and other medical conditions. Afterward, they will prescribe you the best medication. It will be delivered right to your doorstep!
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