Today’s society is seemingly designed to run men ragged.
On a daily basis, the average guy is spinning dozens of plates at once; there are our professional obligations, staying ahead of bills, keeping the house in order, and maintaining your relationship with your partner—just to name a few. On top of that, social media has us convinced that everyone else is doing all these things, and more, better than us.
All this considered, it’s understandable that some of us seem to feel a lot more exhausted than we did when we were younger. However, for those of us over the age of 40, there may be something else contributing to our lethargy: Low testosterone levels.
As you probably remember from middle school, testosterone is responsible for most of the things that we consider to make us men. Starting when we hit puberty, our pituitary gland starts pumping out a bunch of “T” and we begin to reap the benefits throughout adolescence and into young adulthood, like muscle mass and a reliable libido.
After age 30 though, the testosterone factory starts to slow down. Generally speaking, the older we get, the less we have to work with. As such, we being to lose muscle, energy, focus, motivation, hair, and sex drive. We do gain something—though it’s typically belly fat and weight. Not exactly an ideal tradeoff.
All told, low testosterone in men can have profound effects on our mental, physical, and emotional health.
While this decline is a natural aspect of getting older, there are some common symptoms of low testosterone that warrant a discussion with a trusted medical professional. Here are the four most pertinent:
- Increased body fat (and decreased muscle mass)
- Fatigue/loss of energy
- Mental health changes
- Sexual dysfunction
Low T Symptom 1: Increased Body Fat and Decreased Muscle Mass
Ever longingly think back to your years on the high school varsity team and wonder just how you were ever able to stay trim and fit so easily? Back then you could eat whatever you wanted and had plenty of time to train—but today, even while keeping an eye on your diet and attempting to stick to a gym routine, the results just aren’t the same.
This extra weight around the midsection and missing muscle tone are a top sign of low testosterone in men.
All isn’t lost, though. Studies have shown that while mass appears to be affected by decreased T levels, strength and function are far less so. You’ll still be able to move and retain your strength from before—you just might not have the biceps to make it obvious. Welcome to your personal era of “old man strength.”
You’ll also notice something less exciting: extra chub on your torso, including gynecomastia—or man boobs. You’ll need to visit with your doctor and have him or her run the required tests to determine whether or not there is an imbalance between your testosterone and estrogen levels.
Low T Symptom 2: Fatigue and Loss of Energy
Though you may feel as though you’re working just as hard as ever, it’s possible your professional or personal obligations appear to be taking more energy out of you than they should. Maybe your focus wanders more than it used to, or your motivation to #riseandgrind has up and disappeared. These aren’t personal failures of yours; they’re just more symptoms of low testosterone.
Even if you believe you’re getting plenty of sleep—though you likely aren’t—if you still find yourself feeling weary throughout the day, or can’t will yourself to do some of the things that used to be routine, then it’s possible your testosterone levels have dropped, and you should speak with a physician.
Low T Symptom 3: Mood Changes and Mental Health Challenges
Have you or someone close to you noticed that you’re going through regular bouts of irritability? Or perhaps you’re suffering from some of the symptoms of depression?
Both of these can be signs of low testosterone levels.
Unfortunately, many men try to brush these off or neglect to talk about them with their doctors. However, low T’s effects aren’t only physical. Your adrenal system is responsible for regulating your mood and emotional states to an extent as well.
Low T Symptom 4: Low Libido and Erectile Dysfunction
Finally, these are the symptoms most of us are even less likely to speak too publicly about. Low testosterone can certainly rear its ugly head in the bedroom, most specifically through lowered sex drive—but it can also be a contributing factor to erectile dysfunction.
It is important to note that ED typically results from a great many different causes, and testosterone levels are not solely to blame. Other common contributing factors include:
- High blood pressure
- Smoking and alcohol use
- Relationship turmoil
It is also important to note that sexual desire waxes and wanes over time. If you find yourself going through extended periods of avoiding or denying intercourse however, this could be a definite sign of low T.
The good news is, combating these common low testosterone symptoms is within your control. Taking charge of your weight and sticking to a light exercise program is a great place to start—even if that just means a 20-30 minute walk around the neighborhood in the morning or evening.
Reaching out and speaking to a therapist doesn’t carry the stigma it did decades ago, and meditation and breathing exercises have helped many men regain control over their stress levels.
Finally, your doctor may prescribe some manner of testosterone therapy, which can take the form of gels, skin patches, injections, or tablets. They may even recommend you for Testosterone Replacement Therapy, or TRT.
There’s no reversing the clock when it comes to aging, but there are a few ways you may be able to begin feeling younger again—especially if you are dealing with any of the common symptoms of low testosterone outlined above.
If you’re having issues with low testosterone (low-T), call the team at Premier Men’s Medical Center today to schedule an appointment to have a consultation with their experienced and specially trained medical staff. We are a leading men’s clinic providing ED therapy, PE therapy, Acoustic Wave therapy, hormone therapy, and much more to help you get started on your revitalized journey.