The prostate is a complex organ in the human body. It helps produce semen, but prostate issues can also cause erectile dysfunction (ED). On the flip side, the prostate can produce some jaw-dropping pleasure and orgasms! It’s in your best interest to recognize how important your prostate is, and we’re here to help.

What Does The Prostate Do, Anyways?

According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), the prostate is below the bladder and in front of the rectum (the last part of the intestines.) The urethra, which carries urine out of the body, runs through the middle of the prostate. As people with prostates age, the size of the prostate can change. Younger people’s prostates are about the size of a walnut, according to the ACS, but can be much larger in older people. The prostate also produces some of the fluid that’s part of semen.

The prostate doesn’t necessarily regulate or cause erections, but prostate issues can contribute to Erectile Dysfunction (ED), according to National Today. Prostate enlargement and prostate cancer can both cause or worsen ED, a significant enough problem that annually, November is designated as National Impotency Month.

There is no shame in having prostate or ED issues, and it affects people of all age, race, ethnicity, religion and financial background. According to NT, former senator and presidential candidate Bob Dole was open about his struggles with ED, even doing an ad campaign for Viagra. He also survived prostate cancer. ED and prostate cancer can happen to anyone with a prostate, making education and prevention extremely important.

What Is Prostate Cancer?

Prostate cancer begins like any other type of cancer: a growth of cells in the body getting out of control. Almost all prostate cancers are adenocarcinomas, or any type of cancer that grows from a mucus-producing organ of the body, according to Healthline. There are other types, but they’re extremely rare.

We’re not going to sugarcoat it: prostate cancer is serious. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), prostate cancer is the second most common cancer among people assigned male at birth (AMAB) in the United States. It is also one of the leading causes of cancer death among this demographic.

Although serious, some cancers grow slowly; according to the ACS, research suggests prostate cancer starts out as a precancerous condition, although it isn’t yet completely confirmed. Genetic factors can contribute to the likelihood of prostate cancer, such as inherited gene mutations, but that doesn’t mean prevention is impossible.

The CDC states that, “older men, African-American men, and men who have a family history of prostate cancer have a greater risk for developing prostate cancer,” and says that men, or people AMAB, who fall into that category should proactively ask their doctor about cancer screening and prevention.

How Can I Prevent Prostate Cancer?

According to Men’s Health, there are several key elements to prevent prostate problems and keep your body as healthy as possible:

  • Weight and fitness. While everyone has a unique body type, research suggests that people who are overweight can reduce their risk of prostate cancer by losing just 11 pounds. Men’s Health also reported that Otis W. Brawley, MD, FACP, Chief Medical Officer for the American Cancer Society, says thin, athletic people have a lower risk of prostate cancer.
  • Dietary choices. Apparently, meat and cheese can increase risk of prostate cancer, while research suggests vegans can reduce their risk. Even without going vegan, a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, by contrast, may offer some protection.
  • Being smart about supplements. Vitamin D is a great way to reduce cancer risk, but it isn’t necessarily absorbed well by taking supplements. Natural supplementation, like additional sunlight and great dietary choices, can make a bigger difference.

The CDC also recommends people with prostates talk to their doctor about the need or screening, another solid way to prevent prostate cancer or catch it early.

What Else Should I Know About Erectile Dysfunction And Prostate Health?

Some research suggests regular sexual activity is helpful for preventing ED, because lack of blood flow can cause clogged arteries and make erection more difficult. According to a study published in 2003, erectile dysfunction is lower in people with prostates who have sex more often. So you have our permission to get down as often you want, whether solo or partnered!

Another interesting fact to note is that the prostate is also sometimes called the P-spot and is an erogenous zone. An erogenous zone is a point of pleasure and intimate contact. You have many, no matter your genitals or gender! We’re not one to tell you how to have sex, but stimulating the prostate produces some powerful orgasms.

If you’re down for something new, internal massage with a finger is a great place to start. You can try yourself or ask a partner for help. Remember that as you get aroused the prostate swells, making it easier to find and more sensitive. Although entering through the anus is the most direct way, you can also stimulate the prostate indirectly through the perineum, the skin that runs underneath the scrotum to the anus.

Much like research on vulva and clitoral pleasure, there’s not a ton of research on the P-spot. That means sensitivity and curiosity are key. Your body may respond to internal or external massage better, and you may or may not enjoy prostate massage. We encourage time and exploration!