Hormone deficiency is a common problem among both men and women. A decrease in testosterone levels is common in men as they age. Testosterone deficiency, however, can lead to many serious health problems. It can cause cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and even death.
But you can fight these problems simply by getting testosterone therapy. Hormone replacement therapy or men’s testosterone therapy has many benefits. It helps you stay active and provides you with more energy. Furthermore, it can enhance your physique and maintain healthy levels of blood cells.
There are more benefits of this therapy than can be named in a single paragraph. So, as you read ahead, you’ll find more about testosterone therapy and its benefits and risks.
What is Testosterone?
Testosterone is the male sex hormone produced in the testicles. The hormone plays a vital role in our body. Testosterone is most usually linked with sex drive and plays an essential part in sperm production.
Apart from participating in sexual functions, it also affects muscle mass and bone density, the way the male body stores fat, and even red blood cell production. The production of this hormone starts to increase significantly during puberty and starts dipping after 30.
As you cross the age of 30 or 40, your testosterone level slowly declines, typically about 1% a year. However, the problem can also be caused due to a disease called hypogonadism. It hampers the normal production of testosterone in your testicles. Such a deficiency can cause many issues, about which we will be reading ahead.
How Does Testosterone Deficiency Affect Our Health
Whether testosterone deficiency is natural or due to hypogonadism, it can cause various health problems.
Low testosterone levels are one of the biggest reasons for obesity. Obesity metabolizes testosterone to estrogen and disturbs fat dispersion in the body. By lowering your metabolism, testosterone deficiency increases your weight.
Testosterone is a crucial hormone in the diagnosis of metabolic diseases such as obesity. Low testosterone levels reduce lean mass in males and increase fat mass. It sometimes can cause enlarged breast tissue or gynecomastia.
Low Sex Drive
Testosterone is directly related to a man’s libido or sex drive. Deficiency in testosterone levels may seriously affect the overall sexual desire and performance of men.
Natural libido declination is common among men as they age. However, people suffering from low testosterone levels would experience a more drastic decrease in their sexual desire.
Hair fall is another common issue related to low testosterone levels in men. Testosterone plays an essential role in hair production. So, when testosterone levels drop, your hair starts falling too.
That’s why balding is common among older men. However, there can be several other reasons for balding. But people with low testosterone levels are most likely to face the issue of hair loss.
Low Blood Count
In a research article, doctors have linked low testosterone to increase in risk of anemia. The researchers observed some people after administering a testosterone gel.
All of the participants previously had low testosterone and anemia. After applying the gel, researchers found increased blood count in anemic patients who took the treatment than those who used a placebo gel.
Testosterone can change and enhance our mood. Deficiency of this hormone can also cause various emotional problems, like depression and low confidence levels. People suffering from low testosterone can go through a mental rollercoaster. Lack of focus, depression, and irritability are some common issues of low testosterone levels.
Does Testosterone Therapy Help Fight These Problems?
So, can testosterone therapy help you fight these problems? HRT for men or testosterone therapy can help fight these effects. Thus, it can offer you a significant change in your lifestyle. Yet, no studies support that it works in the same way for older people.
Older people are most likely to experience slight changes in comparison to middle-aged ones. But some say that it is still very effective in old age too. Men’s testosterone therapy can make you feel younger, stronger, and elevate your mood.
But certain risks are also associated with testosterone therapy in men.
Risks Associated with Testosterone Therapy
One of the significant drawbacks of hormone replacement therapy with testosterone is its side effects. HRT for men may have both light and severe side effects. Minor side-effects may include-
- Increased urination in men
- Fluid retention in various parts
- Acne or other skin-related problems
Some testosterone therapy may even cause more severe problems, such as-
- Gynecomastia or enlarged breast
- Decreased size of testicles
- Infertility in men
- Increase in cholesterol levels
Excessive red blood cell count in the body can sometimes cause several problems like-
- High blood pressure
- Increased risk of blood clots
- Pulmonary embolism
- Chest pain
Different Types of Hormone Therapy for Men
There are different types of men’s testosterone therapy. Your doctor may prescribe you one from the below.
Testosterone gels are applied to your shoulders, arms, and abdomen. It is a DIY solution, meaning you can do it on your own. You have to use these gels regularly as prescribed.
Testosterone patches are to be applied every day on your back, arm, shoulders, buttocks, and abdomen.
Your doctor will inject testosterone injections on your buttocks twice or thrice a week.
Low testosterone levels can affect the male body in many different ways. Even if some changes may occur due to other reasons, some symptoms may become too severe, leaving you to feel miserable. So, it is necessary to run a testosterone level test in older men.
Consider combining your therapy with a proper diet and exercise. As you go with testosterone therapy, you’ll soon see improvement in symptoms.