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What is Morning Wood and What Causes It?

What is Morning Wood?

Morning Wood is a common term used for penile erection when waking up in the morning. It is medically referred to as Nocturnal Penile Tumescence or Nocturnal Erection. Some people believe that Morning Wood is something related to the mind where the individual is either dreaming of something related to sex or is having an arousal. However, this is completely untrue and Morning Wood is a normal phenomenon that occurs with the reproductive system of males[1].

As a matter of fact Morning Wood is an indicator that everything related to the reproductive system in males with regard to blood supply and health of the nerves is in perfect condition. If an individual does not have Morning Woof on a regular basis then it may indicate an underlying problem like erectile dysfunction. It may also suggest that the nerves and vessels in the penis are not getting enough blood supply[1].

Sleep disorders or hormonal issues like not having enough testosterone can also lead to a significant decline in Morning Wood. Age also plays a factor with regard to the frequency of Morning Wood. As the individual grows old, he experiences less and less of Morning Wood as a result of deficient hormonal levels[1].

If an individual less than 50 years of age has a declining Morning Wood then a consultation with a physician is necessary to rule out any underlying illness causing the decline.

What is the root cause Morning Wood is what has been explained in the article below[1].

What Causes Morning Wood?

Morning Wood has nothing to do with sexual arousal or desire. It occurs as a result of the sleep cycle and the supply of blood to the nerves and vessels to the male reproductive system. It is actually a sign of a healthy reproductive system. Morning Wood occurs during the time when the individual is in REM sleep. An individual is said to be in REM sleep where there are periods of rapid eye movements while asleep normally while dreaming. It is also accompanied by increased pulse and breathing rate[1].

An individual can have multiple REM sleep while the time he is asleep. The erection tends to go down as and when the individual goes into deep sleep. It can thus be said that an individual may have multiple erections at night while sleeping without even knowing about it. Studies suggest that normally after a period of REM sleep the individual wakes up. Thus erections are more seen early in the morning when the individual is more likely to be in REM sleep[1].

Additionally, testosterone tends to be elevated in the morning than other times during the day and hence erection is seen more in the morning. In some studies it was suggested that some people may experience pain while having Morning Wood but not when they were sexually aroused. This makes Morning Wood different from normal sexual erections[1].

When to See A Doctor?

Since Morning Wood is a sign of how healthy the reproductive organs of an individual are it is important to keep a close eye on the frequency of erections. If there is a sudden decline of Morning Wood or it completely stops then a visit to a physician is recommended. This may be a sign of sleep disorder, hormonal issues, or even erectile dysfunction[1].

Erectile dysfunction is a precursor for more serious ailments like cardiac issues, hypertension, or diabetes. This is seen more in the younger population. It has also been observed that people who are on antidepressants also tend to lose their erections and do not have Morning Wood frequently[1].

There are also certain other medications like antihypertensives, muscle relaxants, hormone medications, and antiepileptics that reduce erection and may lead to decrease incidences of Morning Wood. If an individual has started on any of these medications and experiences a change in the frequency of Morning Wood then he can speak to the physician to get the medications changed or the dose adjusted[1].

If Morning Wood starts becoming painful then also it requires a consultation with a physician. In some cases, the erection seen Morning Wood does not go away upon waking up. In such cases if the erection persists even after waking up for more than three hours then the individual should consult with a physician to rule out any underlying illness causing this condition[1].


Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:June 21, 2019

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