Erectile dysfunction is a common problem amongst men; it leads to the inability to maintain a stable erection for sufficient periods (1). It affects both partners, and leads to many people searching for a solution; some even go far as to ask, “does Vicks vapor rub help with erectile dysfunction?”
Conventional Treatments for Erectile Dysfunction
With erectile dysfunction affecting every one in ten men in the United States (2), it’s no wonder people are in search of a miracle drug or component to cure the condition.
Conventional treatments for erectile dysfunction include quitting tobacco, exercising regularly, and taking prescribed medication like oral phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitors (3).
These may seem like obvious choices to help combat the condition; however, there are many interesting home-based treatments, too. The most widely used non-prescription remedy includes applying Vicks vapor rub to the penis.
Does Vicks Vapor Rub Help with Erectile Dysfunction?
All those who have erectile dysfunction are familiar with the routine medication that surrounds it, but many still beg the question: does Vicks vapor rub help with erectile dysfunction?
But what caused people to flock to Vicks in the first place? Simple; men saw positive results in their erection.
Why Does Vicks Vapor Rub Help with Erectile Dysfunction?
Vicks contains the active ingredient menthol, which is often used for its cooling effect and vasodilation properties (4). Menthol induces cutaneous vasodilation, which means that it dilates the blood vessels found in the skin; this includes the penile skin, which surrounds the penis.
Menthol is easily absorbed into the dermal layers of the penis, owing to the extreme permeability of penile skin (5).
Once the menthol enters the skin, it transfers into the blood vessels intertwined with the dermal cells. Soon after, the menthol triggers TRPM8 channels, causing a burning effect. In turn, this signals the brain to dilate the blood vessels in the vicinity, hence creating a cooling effect (6).
However, there is no scientific medical evidence due to the lack of dedicated research to support that this method is sustainable as a long-term solution for erectile dysfunction.
Vicks Vapor Rub for Erectile Dysfunction: Helpful or Not?- The Verdict
While on the one hand, we see that Vicks vapor rub can help users by providing an immediate solution to erectile dysfunction; on the other, we must also remember that there is no explicit research proving that Vicks vapor rub can serve as a long term solution to erectile dysfunction.
This is to say that while Vicks vapor rub certainly can induce a temporary erection, it cannot cure the condition altogether. A cure to erectile dysfunction would ensure that, once a course of medication is complete, you would not require further medication to hold an erection.
However, as Vicks vapor rub does not cure the condition, users will have to apply it each time they wish to maintain a stable erection.
While the community still asks, “does Vicks vapor rub help with erectile dysfunction?” it is safe to say that, while there is no conclusive research to prove long-term benefits, it certainly can help with short-term issues.