Morning wood, morning erections, or nocturnal penile tumescence (NPT) as it's technically called, refer to the phenomenon of getting erections during the morning hours. Morning erections are common, and generally nothing to worry about.
It's natural, normal, and healthy for men to wake up with erections. However, if morning erections occur frequently and at inappropriate times, it could be an indication of a medical condition or disease.
What is Morning Wood?
Morning erections are a normal phenomenon for most men. The penis becomes erect during the night while you are sleeping. This occurs regardless of whether you are in the REM or non-REM sleep stages. The body is responding to normal testosterone levels, which increase while you sleep, and in turn, cause the penis to become erect.
Scientists aren't exactly sure what causes morning erections. Some theories suggest that the erection is a result of the body responding to increased circulation and oxygen levels in the blood. Other theories propose those morning erections are caused by a buildup of semen in the prostate gland during sleep. They also can be caused by erotic dreams or nocturnal emissions (wet dreams).
What Causes Morning Erections?
When a man is a teenager and goes through puberty, the body produces more testosterone than it does when he is an adult. Morning erections are a common occurrence for teenagers. They occur because of the body's natural response to the rising levels of testosterone.
Morning erections are also more common for men who are in their late teens or early 20s. This is because the body is still producing a lot of testosterone. After a man has reached the age of 30, his testosterone levels begin to drop and morning erections are less likely to occur.
NPT, or nocturnal penile tumescence, refers to the body's response to normal testosterone levels at night. When you are asleep, the body produces more testosterone. While you are asleep, the brain is still working, and it sends signals to the body to stimulate activity.
Morning erections are more common for men who have normal testosterone levels. If a man experiences low testosterone levels, morning erections are less common or stop altogether.
It is also possible for morning erections to occur if a man is experiencing unrequited sexual attraction. For example, if a man is attracted to a woman, and he is dreaming about her, he may have an erection while he is sleeping.
Causes of Morning Erections
Morning erections are generally nothing to worry about. They are a normal, healthy part of the male anatomy. However, there are some medical conditions that can cause morning erections. These include:
1. Sleep disorders. If a man is having sleep problems, morning erections can occur. Sleep apnea, restless leg syndrome, and narcolepsy are all disorders that can contribute to morning erections.
2. Alcohol. Drinking alcohol before bed can cause morning erections. Alcohol speeds up the body's metabolism, and the body temperature rises. Both of these factors can contribute to morning erections.
3. Heart disease. If a man has heart disease, morning erections may occur more frequently. This is because the body is reacting to the increased heart rate. Heart disease can also cause nocturnal erections.
4. Medications. Morning erections can also occur because of certain medications. If a man is taking medication for depression, this can lead to morning erections. Certain medications for high blood pressure and heart disease can lead to morning erections.
What Does Morning Wood Say About Your Erection Health?
Morning erections are a normal part of life for most men. However, if you have a medical condition or suffer from an illness, morning erections may not be as frequent or may stop altogether.
Occasional morning erections are not a problem and are a normal part of life for most men. If you are experiencing morning erections more often than usual, you should meet with your doctor to have a physical exam done. He or she can examine your medical history and determine whether you have a medical condition.
There are several health conditions that can cause morning erections to occur more often. If you are experiencing morning erections more often than usual, it could be a sign of a medical condition or disease. Some of the health conditions and diseases that could be causing you to have morning erections include prostate cancer.
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer among men in the United States. It occurs when cancer cells form in the prostate gland. The prostate gland is the walnut-size gland that surrounds the urethra. Some prostate cancer cells can secrete hormones that stimulate the penis to become erect.
Morning erections are a common sign of prostate cancer. Doctors believe that prostate cancer is the reason a man wakes up with an erection at night. Some men may notice that they wake up every night with an erection. Doctors suggest that men who wake up with an erection more than twice a month should be concerned about having prostate cancer.
What If I Don't Ever Get Morning Wood?
If you have recently lost a lot of weight, you may have a reduced sex drive, and you may not get morning erections. However, if you have lost weight a long time ago, and you still don't get morning erections, it could be an indication that you have low testosterone levels.
If you are under a lot of stress, or you are not sleeping well, you will not get morning erections.
Morning wood also fades away with age, due to lower levels of testosterone in aging men. Additionally, if you have recently had prostate surgery, you may have trouble getting morning erections.
The Bottom Line
Morning erections are a normal phenomenon for most men. They are a sign that your body and your sex drive are functioning properly. If you are getting morning erections, there is no need to worry. If you are not getting morning erections, there is no need to worry either! It's only an issue when accompanied by other symptoms, or if you are experiencing painful erections.