is often a last resort for men who suffer the problem unaware that it is fairly common.
A temporary period of impotence can often be traced to fleeting issues such as stress or drinking too heavily, according to the Irish Independent.
However, treatment is widely available for those who find that the problem is continuing and even having an impact on their personal relationships.
Medical treatment for the condition is widely available and drugs such as Viagra are often effective.
Other solutions to a man's inability to get or maintain an erection are mechanical devices that aid him physically, while surgery is another option that is only viable in some circumstances, such as in the event of arterial disease.
Psychological reasons are often the cause of erectile dysfunction and individuals affected may find that they will benefit from counselling.
A recent study has found that drugs commonly used to treat male impotence can also be effective in treating women who experience sexual dysfunction.