Delay creams and sprays are a temporary solution for premature ejaculation that appeal to many guys.
They can be especially useful if your problem is caused by physical sensitivity rather than factors like anxiety or a lack of arousal control.
Despite being an immediate and effective solution in many cases, it’s important to bear in mind that they aren’t always the perfect solution. And they can sometimes lead to side effects or practical issues which need to be dealt with.
So in this article you’ll find out more about the pros and cons of using a delay cream, hopefully helping you work out if it’s the right option for you or not.
If you’ve already got your heart set on trying one, you may find it useful to check out my list of the best delay creams.
The benefits of delay creams & sprays
1. An easy option which requires minimal effort
Using a delay cream is perhaps the quickest and easiest approach to dealing with premature ejaculation. All you need to do is apply it before you have sex and away you go.
2. You apply it just before you have sex
A delay cream only needs to be applied each time you have sex. So if you don’t have sex often, you don’t need to worry about continually taking something just in case. This is in stark contrast to some other treatments such as anti-depressants, which would need to be taken every day.
3. The ingredients are usually safe
The ingredients used are typically Benzocaine and Lidocaine, topical anesthetics which are generally thought to be safe for most people. Durex condoms, Promescent, Super Dragon 6000, Doc Johnson, Rock hard and Stud 100, for example, all use either of those.
Some people may have adverse reactions to a topical anesthetic cream, but it’s quite rare and most people tolerate the ingredients well.
4. Available without a prescription
Most delay creams can be bought over the counter, without the need for a prescription. The only exception I can think of is EMLA cream, which wasn’t designed for PE anyway.
5. The numbing is usually effective
The most important question when considering a delay cream is of course whether it actually works of not. Most of them do work, and sometimes very well.
However, the numbing action is sometimes a little too strong and causes other problems, as you’ll see in the next section.
Possible issues and side effects
1. Loss of erection
Following on from the last point, unfortunately one of the common side effects of delay creams is too much numbing. If the cream is too strong, or you put too much on, you may end up with reduced sensation.
This can sometimes also result in difficult getting or maintaining an erection. You then have to wash off what you can, and wait for the anesthetic to wear off before trying again. Not an ideal situation in the throws of passion.
2. Loss of pleasure
Another common problem with desensitizing creams is that you effectively have a trade-off. You should last longer in bed, but you might enjoy the sensation less.
It could be argued that you have less pleasure, but have it for longer so it’s a good trade. And you also get pleasure in knowing that you’re satisfying your partner, which is no-doubt important.
But the problem can also result in weaker orgasms, or not being able to ejaculate at all. This is obviously not ideal in the long-run as you’ll soon grow frustrated by it.
3. Transference to your partner
Any numbing cream has the potential to ruin the enjoyment for your partner as well if it transfers to her. There are always instructions telling you how long to wait after applying it to avoid this. Usually no less than 10 minutes and no more than 30 minutes.
But sometimes transference still happens for various reasons, such as getting the timing wrong. An even bigger problem is transference during oral sex. For this reason it’s often advised to apply the cream and then wear a condom.
4. Having to apply it before having sex
Imagine the scenario: you’ve just been on a date with the woman of your dreams and you take her back to your place. You’re ripping each others clothes off right inside the front door.
In the steamy heat of the moment, it wouldn’t really seem appropriate to ask “do you mind if I pop into the bathroom to apply some delay cream? Oh, and can we wait 20 minutes before we go any further?”
Even if you’re cunning about it and sneak into the toilet, apply it and then engage in extended foreplay to kill time, it’s still potentially an issue.
If you have an understanding partner who you talk openly with, then it’s probably not such a problem. But for those of you who are single, dating and a bit shy it’s something to consider.
5. Not a cure – the long-term cost
Desensitizing products can’t cure premature ejaculation. So if you choose to use them on an on-going basis, you’re potentially heading for a sex mortgage.
If you have the money, you might feel that it’s worth the cost. And even if you don’t have all the money in the world, the chances are you’ll still find enough for the upkeep of your sex life. But at the end of the day, the cost will add up if you have an active life between the sheets.
It’s a personal choice whether to use a delay cream or not; only you can decide whether it’s a good option. And you won’t know of course until you experiment to find one which suits you, the right dosage and the right timing.
As you can see from the list of potential side effects, they can potentially cause you more harm than good. If you’re still not sure whether this is the right approach, you might find it useful to read my article assessing whether desensitizing sprays or natural techniques are better.