Morning wood: how and why morning erections happen

Picture this: It's morning and the sun's just risen, but you quickly notice something else has, too. You look down, and you notice something. You have an intense hard-on and you are mildly aroused. Welcome to the world of morning wood—also known as nocturnal penile tumescence. 

Did you ever wonder why morning wood happens and if you should be worried? This is a phenomenon that happens to just about everyone who’s been assigned male at birth. Let’s talk about it.

What is morning wood?

“Morning wood” is the slang term for getting an erection while you sleep. It most commonly happens in the early morning or in the middle of the night, which is where the term “morning wood” comes into play. 

Contrary to popular belief, morning wood does not mean that you had erotic fantasies while you sleep. This phenomenon can happen whether you have erotic dreams or if you were dreaming of doing your taxes.

Why do you get morning wood?

If you’re like most people, you may have wondered why men wake up with erections. It seems like it would be tied to sex dreams, but anyone who’s experienced it can tell you that it isn’t always a matter of sensuality. 

According to doctors, the reason why morning wood happens doesn’t always involve eroticism;  instead, it has to do with your parasympathetic nervous system. This is the part of your nervous system linked to all involuntary bodily functions like breathing, sweating, or digesting your food.

Morning wood generally happens because of changes in hormone levels that occur while you sleep. The two biggest culprits include your REM sleep changes as well as pressure on your sacral nerve. Let’s talk about each:

  • REM sleep is the deep, recharging form of sleep that tends to help regulate hormones. This regulation can change levels in your hormones, some of which can cause your body to react as if it’s in a state of sexual arousal. 
  • Pressure on your sacral nerve can also cause erections. The sacral nerve is the same nerve that helps your body signal that you need to pee. When you have pressure on your sacral nerve, it can cause your parasympathetic nervous system to register the symptoms you feel as an erection. (Boom, there goes the boner.)

  • Who can get morning wood? 

    Anyone who has a penis can get morning wood, even if they are very young or very old. Hormones don’t discriminate, even when it is a matter of overnight changes. If you have any reason to believe your hormones are acting up, you may be at risk of morning wood.

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    Morning wood is not something that you can control, so you shouldn’t worry about it being sinful or anything like that. In fact, the average man can get an erection as frequently as five times per night depending on what happens. 

    Is morning wood normal?

    Yes, morning wood is totally normal. If anything, morning wood is a sign that you’re totally fine and healthy. Morning wood is a good sign that you are dealing with a healthy libido.

    There are always exceptions to the rule, however. If you have any reason to believe it is abnormal (including being unable to stop having it), contact a doctor. 

    What should you do with morning wood?

    Morning wood can be dealt with in a number of different ways. You can choose to ignore it, or you can choose to use it. If you want to use it, you might as well make the most of it by adding a supplement to the mix—like bido

    Bido makes it possible to enjoy the thrill and sensitivity that comes with “rising bright and early” for a partner. Having that extra boost to your regular arousal makes exploring kinks easier and also bolsters your ability to enjoy every little extra thing. Aren’t you ready to try Bido today?