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What's a Normal Viagra Starting Dose?

September 26, 2020
4 mins

Viagra® (sildenafil) comes in three doses, and figuring out which Viagra® dose to start is a common question for the 50% of men over 40 just beginning on this most popular of erectile dysfunction medications.

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Quick Facts About Viagra® Dosing

Viagra® (sildenafil citrate) comes in three doses: 25 mg, 50 mg, and 100 mg

Viagra® (sildenafil) is taken as a single, easy-to-swallow pill up to 4 hours before sexual intimacy

Most men begin with a 50mg Viagra® dose and adjust as necessary with the help of their doctor.

Common Viagra® Doses

The original branded Viagra® comes in three tablet sizes and doses. They are 25mg (milligrams), 50mg, and 100mg. 

Men respond differently to Viagra® (sildenafil), and your response is typically what determines your ideal dose. Viagra® is a prescription medication, and when a doctor first writes your prescription they'll help you decide the right starting dose. How much Viagra® should you take the first time? For most men, a popular dose of Viagra® to start is 50mg.

From there, many men may ask they doctor to change their dose depending how they react: for some, 50mg Viagra® may not be effective enough, and your healthcare provider may suggest moving to the maximum dose of Viagra available, at 100mg. This is the highest dose of Viagra® that is safe and approved by the FDA. Some doctors may recommend beginning treatment at 25mg and ascending as necessary.

When and How To Take Viagra®

Viagra® (sildenafil) should be taken less than 4 hours prior to beginning any sexual activity, and it usually takes 30-60 minutes for its effects to begin taking hold in the body. If you've eaten a fatty meal, like a burger and fries, it could take longer for Viagra® to work. 

Don't worry too much about the timeline: Viagra® works for a few hours after you've taken the tablet, so there's no rush and no precise deadline.

It's also important to understand that Viagra® doesn't work on its own – you must be sexually stimulated for sildenafil to work. You aren't likely to get hard by just sitting around after taking the medication.

Make sure to tell your doctor about all of your existing health conditions, if any, and any other medications you're already taking. Viagra® can cause blood pressure to drop suddenly to an unsafe level if it's taken with certain other medicines, including nitrates and guanylate cyclase stimulators like riociguat. 

Viagra® (sildenafil) FDA prescribing label lays out how long sildenafil stays in the body.

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