Nocturnal penile tumescence is a medical term used to refer to the erection that takes place in the early morning in all males including young children and infants in the womb whose organs have developed well. The same occurs to females although it is seldom talked about, a condition known as nocturnal clitoral erection.
Nocturnal erections result from the blood vessels in the penile shaft reacting to the impacts from the glands that manufacture and store hormones that is the nervous and the endocrine system. On an event when one is excited sexually, the nervous system, particularly, the brain sends signals that cause the blood to move towards the penis. The blood then fills the muscles and the cells in the dick resulting in turgidity. When the cells are full of blood, they get bigger and firm thus giving rise to an erection.
Testosterone plays a vital role in erections since it causes the brain to convey messages to the member when one is aroused. Sometimes, erections occur without sexual arousal. Nocturnal erections are involuntary because there is nothing that triggers them though they are as firm as the triggered one.
Nocturnal penile tumescence takes place when one is asleep, a phase known as rapid eye movement otherwise referred to as the period of light sleep, although during such a time, some parts of the brains are awakened. The active nerves of the brain during that time include the nerves responsible for a fight, flight, rest, digest and the site that secretes a hormone responsible for the change of moods.
There is an alternation between rapid eye movement and non-rapid eye movement when one is asleep. The shift of the light sleep is characterized by a trigger of fight and flight and then stimulation of parasympathetic phase occurs. These stimulations are awakened only during rapid eye movement. The non-rapid eye movement and rapid eye movement work together thus causing an involuntary erection to take place given that such stimulations can happen when not every part of the brain is active.
It is specifically during the stimulation of rest and digest phase that occurs when one is having a light sleep that uncontrolled firmness of the dick occurs. However, in rare cases especially as one age, nocturnal erection can occur during non-rapid eye movement. No scientific concept has been put in place to tell why nocturnal penile tumescence occurs when older males are deeply asleep.
Given that testosterone levels shoot in the morning and that there isn’t much sleep at that time, nocturnal erections are bound to take place. People who suffer from conditions that predispose impotence are likely to miss nocturnal erections because of inadequate blood flow to the penis. Conditions like diabetes, mental instability cut the communication between the brain and the privates making little or no blood flow hence no erection when one is asleep.
These erections are many when one’s sleep is of a high quality or in the instances when one is under medication that deals with impotence. Getting nocturnal erections is an indication that one is healthy. The same can be maintained by observing a healthy lifestyle such as taking a balanced diet, regular exercises and avoiding intake of alcohol and smoking.