At the age of 30, testosterone levels peak. With each passing year, testosterone levels diminish. At first there are no symptoms or side effects of reduced testosterone and for some men the most common symptoms never appear. However, for some men, early signs of low testosterone levels cause significant concern even in men who have no idea their symptoms are associated with lowering testosterone.
Symptoms of Low Testosterone
If you are experiencing one or more of the following symptoms, it may be time for you to get your testosterone levels tested.
- Fatigue: You feel tired more often than you used to. This is a common symptom of aging and increased stress, but it could also mean your testosterone levels have fallen.
- Poor Sex Drive: Testosterone is the sex hormone – so less test means fewer cravings to get busy between the sheets.
- Erectile Dysfunction: Believe it or not, low testosterone levels can affect erection strength and your ability to keep an erection. There are some who believe this is the natural life cycle in motion. Once a man’s testosterone levels reach a certain low, the body knows he will not longer produce children and thus production is “turned off.”
- Depression: Who wouldn’t be depressed if they were tired all the time and lacked interest or ability in the bedroom? But, low testosterone actually affects mood more directly just like the estrogen effect in menopausal women.
- Weight Gain: Testosterone plays an important part in metabolism. As your testosterone levels drop, you could notice increased fat stores and weight gain. Your doctor may ask you to adopt a healthier diet and exercise program before testing testosterone levels, in some cases.
- Loss of Strength: Testosterone directly affects muscle growth and maintenance. If you have less muscle, you are bound to be less strong. Reduced muscle strength and definition may not be enough cause, however, for the doctor to place you on testosterone replacement therapy.
- Hot Flashes: Many men believe that hot flashes are a woman’s symptom, but that’s not the case. Men can suffer from hot flashes just as often as women when testosterone levels fall. Hot flashes are often cured with hormone replacement therapy.
There is no shame in seeking help from your doctor if you believe you are experiencing andropause or male menopause. Lowering testosterone levels is a normal part of life, but you don’t have to live with the symptoms as if they were normal. There is treatment for most men to reduce symptoms of low testosterone.