A lot of men would rather eat their own shoe than talk about climaxing too quickly. And yet, it’s a concern that many men share, with research from Smiling Dick finding 49.5 percent believe they’re affected by premature ejaculation (PE), and 88.3 percent wish they had more control over how long they last.

There are many ways to control a climax, but not all are created equal. Here, we’ve rounded up some of the better known methods, and outlined which ones are tried and true, and which should be put to bed.

1. The distraction method

Whether you’re thinking about the football scores or Great Aunt Jean, distracting yourself when you’re about to climax can help delay orgasm for some. The downside is that you will take yourself out of the moment, mentally.

The verdict? Don’t make mental time travel your go-to method — for the sake of yourself, your partner and great sex everywhere.

2. Numbing solutions

Applied to the head of the penis just before intercourse, numbing sprays and creams work by desensitising the penis to keep you from climaxing fast.

The verdict? On the plus side, numbing solutions can provide a quick-fix for PE. The downside is that they can come with side effects, can reduce pleasure and you’ll likely need to use a condom to stop the product transferring to your partner.

3. The squeeze method

A classic. Just before climaxing, you grab the head of the penis and give it a tight squeeze to stop the orgasm.

The verdict? While this method is a go-to for some, nailing the timing is essential, so it isn’t 100 percent reliable. Sometimes it hurts, too.

4. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)

Involving a series of therapy sessions with a treating doctor, CBT is a popular method for treating PE.

The verdict? Unlike methods 1, 2 and 3, CBT addresses the cause as opposed to just the symptoms, and some men find it permanently cures their PE. The downside is that CBT can be costly and requires the cooperation of a partner.

5. Climax control training

This sees the man use the start-stop method — where you stimulate the penis and then stop just before ejaculation — in conjunction with the vibrating Prolong device, held under the head of the penis. The process is repeated three times a week for six weeks as part of the climax control training program.

The verdict? While an initial time investment is required during the six weeks, clinical trials show the program can provide a permanent solution to PE, adding several minutes to men’s duration with no side effects. What’s more, when compared to other permanent solutions like CBT, Prolong is considerably more cost effective.

As with all things, different “strokes” will work for different folks. The good news is that there are permanent, side effect free treatments available.