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Why men wake up with an erection

Businessman Sleeping on the Job --- Image by © Sean Justice/Corbis

Scientists have found interesting reasons why men have erections in the morning. Director of Medicine at the University of Newcastle, Australia, Sergio Diez Alvarez says the morning penile erection which is known as nocturnal penile tumescence tells a lot about a man’s sexual function.

Erections in men happens when the gland secrete hormones into the system on the blood vessels of the penis. Male hormones like testosterone have a huge impact in controlling the brain’s response to the blood trapped in the muscles of the penis.

Surprisingly, people with damaged spinal cord  can still have an erection because it can occur without the brain being involved. It sometimes uses uncontrolled reflex actions located in the spinal cord.

Scientists also noted that men wake up with an erection because they often wake up coming from Rapid Eye Movement sleep. Rapid Eye Movement sleep is the dream phase.

Alvarez noted that men have up to five erections per night and they usually last up to 20 minutes. And that having erections is a good thing.

“Since good heart health is associated with an ability to have erections, the presence of nocturnal erections is generally accepted to be good news,” he said.

 

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