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How to get a harder erection

His Clinic · March 4, 2019

Penises can be temperamental, with their behaviour linked to almost every other part of your life, including what you ate for lunch and how concerned you are about that presentation you have coming up at work.

For these, or a thousand other reasons, you may have a difficult time either getting an erection or it just isn’t as hard as it used to be. This isn’t the end of the world however, as there are a number of simple ways to increase the strength of your erection.

Work out

Perhaps the best way to get a harder erection is by working out. Hit the gym, go for a run or play a team sport, just get moving – for the sake of your erection! Physical activity will help you to achieve a stronger erection in a number of ways. Firstly, aerobic activity gets the blood flowing, and flowing blood is vital to good strong erections. Secondly, a good workout will build the levels of nitric oxide in your blood, a crucial compound required for the penis to relax. Once your penis has relaxed the chambers inside open up allowing blood to course in, resulting in an erection, the more relaxed the blood vessels are, the more blood will make its way in there giving you a stronger erection. Thirdly, exercising and maintaining a healthy body weight can mean you feel better in your own skin and therefore more confident, possibly banishing any concerns regarding performance anxiety. And lastly, keeping excess body fat to a minimum stops the conversion of testosterone into oestrogen, which can be disastrous for your erection.

Eat well

While eating a balanced diet high in vegetables is a great way to keep your weight down and your body healthy, eating the right things can also mean a happier penis and stronger erection. Dark coloured berries, fruits and vegetables are high in the antioxidant anthocyanin. While its pigment helps make foods such as eggplant, dark berries, plums and grapes dark in colour, it also works to reduce the levels of free radicals in your body. Free radicals are damaging to nitric oxide production, which allows for good blood flow to your penis. Meanwhile, tea, citrus fruits and legumes all contain flavonoids. Flavonoids too, increase production of nitric oxide and also work to decrease its breakdown, meaning higher levels throughout your body and better blood flow, boosting the hardness of your erection.

Get enough sleep

Most men will experience various, half hour-long erections as they sleep. Seemingly random, these nighttime erections actually serve a purpose, and that is to get the blood flowing to your penis, opening up the blood vessels; sort of like little nocturnal workouts for your member. Most men experience about three of these per night, and the more sleep you get, the more erections you’ll have. It’s thought that the more of these you have, the more elastic your blood vessels become, allowing for greater amounts of blood to enter your penis and subsequently, stronger erections.

Stop using certain substances

Tobacco has been shown to have a drastic impact on your penis and erections, as it shrinks blood vessels and impacts on your blood circulation, two vital components for a strong erection. Meanwhile, anabolic steroids shrink the scrotum, lowering testosterone levels, and excessive alcohol consumption causes nerve damage and can change the balance of your hormones, making it harder to get and maintain a really solid erection.


Some medications can help increase the blood flow to your penis making your erections harder. Within the tissue of your penis are molecules known as cGMPs, which cause your blood vessels to relax and dilate. Unfortunately, there are a class of enzymes, PDE5s which are at odds with your cGMPs, limiting dilation. Erectile dysfunction medications bind to these enzymes, leaving the cGMP molecules free to help your penis open up its blood vessels and become as full of blood, and as hard, as possible.

While there are a range of things in life which can cause your erection to be softer than you’d like it to be, there is plenty you can do to combat this. By making simple lifestyle changes, working out more and eating right, you can help your penis to achieve the hard erections you’re used to, or even achieve a new level of solidness you haven’t experienced before!

Learn more about E.D.

Luckily getting a harder erection in most cases can be easily fixed with the right treatment. Read more on the differences between Sildenafil and Cialis here

Reasonable care has been taken to provide accurate information at the time of creation but this is for informational purposes only.

This information is not intended to substitute medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to manage or diagnose a medical condition.

This information is not intended for use in an emergency. If you are suffering an acute illness, overdose, or emergency condition, call triple zero (000) and ask for an ambulance

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