Healthy men over the age of 30 see a decrease in testosterone levels of about 1 percent each year, and while modest testosterone loss isn’t in and of itself a problem, it can manifest into symptoms that interfere with your everyday life.
If you’ve been feeling inexplicably tired, out of sorts or depressed lately, then you may be suffering from low T, a common condition that may be remedied with lifestyle changes and hormone therapy replacement. There are other more serious side effects of low testosterone, but there are also ways to combat this condition.
Testosterone is essential for both men and women, but men need this vital hormone for appropriate sexual maturity. It’s responsible for your deeper voice, muscle mass development and healthy sexual appetite.
Beyond the sexual problems associated with low testosterone, there are a variety of medical conditions that can be directly or indirectly linked with low T. These include osteoporosis, heart disease and certain types of cancer.
Testosterone affects your body fat levels, which can put a greater strain on your heart, potentially leading to obesity and diabetes. Scientists aren’t sure if low testosterone by itself increases the risks for these and other conditions, but there is a relationship between low T and poor health.
Low testosterone affects men differently. You may only notice one or two distinct symptoms, or you might experience the full range outlined below. Physical symptoms include:
- Hot flashes
- Fragile bones
- Less body hair
- Swelling in the breasts
- Decreased metabolism
- More body fat with less muscle mass
In addition to the physical side effects of low T, you might also feel depression, sadness and anxiety while suffering from sleep disturbances and insomnia. The important thing to consider is whether these symptoms interfere with your life enough to cause problems.
Know that there are options for dealing with your symptoms and that you don’t have to suffer. Hormone replacement therapy could be the answer to the physical and emotional side effects of low T.
Options for Hormone Replacement Therapy
Skin and mouth patches, topical gels, injections and implants are all methods used by doctors today to deliver hormone supplements into your body. There’s some debate about the reliability of each treatment option.
However, studies have shown that pellet therapy if the most beneficial by evenly releasing the hormones and only having to administer them every few months. Hormone replacement therapy works by mimicking the body’s natural hormone production. If you’re dealing with the effects of low T, then hormone replacement can work in conjunction with dietary and lifestyle changes to boost your testosterone levels.
Men who see positive outcomes from hormone therapy report a more vigorous sex drive and better erectile function. Outside of the bedroom, normal levels of testosterone promote better heart health while lowering the risk of obesity, diabetes, osteoporosis and premature death.
As with any medical treatment, you should visit your doctor first to determine how effective this remedy may be for your situation. Age-related testosterone depletion isn’t always a cause for concern, but it’s a good idea to ask about treatments if you’re suffering from the side effects listed above or your low T is disrupting your life.
There are several options available for restoring low testosterone levels through hormone replacement therapy, so talk to your doctor about your best chances for treatment.