One of the most-frustrating aspects of erectile dysfunction symptoms is that they usually go unnoticed until the affected man is with a partner. This not only increases the anxiety and embarrassment felt by the erectile dysfunction sufferer, but often compounds the problem by adding a psychological component. This phenomenon also makes it more difficult for the affected man to determine whether or not the cause of his erectile dysfunction is a genuine physiological issue, or a purely psychological one.

Fortunately, there is an effective self-test for erectile dysfunction than can be easily administered at home, which will help determine whether or not the affected man is physically capable of having an erection. This test, called the Nocturnal Penile Tumescence test (NPT for short), can be performed by anyone (no special training is involved), and requires only a roll of basic postage stamps, and the willingness to follow the required routine for a period of three-consecutive nights.

The basic purpose of the NPT test is to determine if the man is having normal erections while he sleeps. Because many men wake up unaware of whether or not they have had a nocturnal erection, this simple test is amazingly useful. The presence of erections during sleep indicates that the man’s erectile dysfunction symptoms are not the result of impotence (wherein the affected individual is physically incapable of having an erection), but rather the result of some psychological issue. It’s as simple as that.

Administering the NPT Test

Prior to administering the NPT, the subject should abstain from drinking alcohol or taking any other form of sedative for a period of two days. This ensures that nocturnal erections will not be suppressed by outside causes.

To perform the test effectively, the man must also make sure that he wears either boxer-style underwear or nothing at all while sleeping. This will prevent any unnatural interruption of blood flow to the penis during the night.

The test itself consists of simply applying a ring of four-to-six wetted postage stamps around the middle of the penis shaft. The stamps should be applied and allowed to dry either before the boxers are put on, or while the penis is outside of the fly. Once the ring of stamps has dried, the underwear can then be put on, or the penis can then be placed back inside them. The subject will then go to sleep as he normally would while avoiding contact with the ring of stamps.

The aforementioned process should be followed for a period of three-consecutive nights.

Determining the Results of the Erectile Dysfunction Test

Evaluating the results of the test is also extremely simple. If the man awakes in the morning to find that the ring of stamps has been broken (not torn, however), then it is probably safe to assume that he experienced an erection at some point in the night. This result indicates that he is not impotent, and is capable of having erections. The inability to do so with a partner, therefore, is probably due to a psychological issue.

If the man goes three-straight nights without breaking the ring of stamps, however, then there is possible cause for concern. This may very well be an indication that his erectile dysfunction symptoms are caused by some underlying physical problem.

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