Have you been noticing some odd changes in either yourself or your partner? Unexplained mood swings, tiredness and fatigue, perhaps insomnia or a lower libido? If you’re a male over the age of 30, this could be the result of low testosterone.
“Do I need testosterone replacement therapy?”, isn’t a sentence doctors hear very often from patients, because unfortunately, the symptoms and effects of a natural drop in testosterone aren’t widely discussed, and are often dismissed as just part of getting older. But if you feel like you’ve been suffering with some of the symptoms we’re about to talk about, we’d encourage you to get in touch for a consultation.
What is Testosterone?
Testosterone is the primary male sex hormone and anabolic steroid in men. It’s present in both men and women from birth, but there is an approximate 30-fold increase in testosterone during male puberty. In the body, it regulates libido, bone mass, fat distribution, muscle mass, and strength. It also plays a vital role in sperm production.
A Drop in Testosterone
As men age, it is natural to experience a drop in testosterone levels. Generally the decline starts between the ages of 30 and 40 and the effects aren’t too noticeable. However, for many, changes are noticeable and they have a significant impact on daily life. Decreasing levels of testosterone can also be exacerbated by lifestyle choices (such as excessive alcohol consumption).
Symptoms of decreased testosterone are varied, and may include effects such as:
- Decreased libido
- General fatigue
- Reduced muscle mass
- Erectile dysfunction
- Loss of body hair
- Increased body fat
- Decreased endurance
- Mood swings
- Decreased sleep quality
- Reduced cognitive function
- Loss of concentration and memory
For anyone suffering from low testosterone, such symptoms can have a profound effect on their quality of life. It is therefore vital that any individual suffering from the condition seeks the advice of a medical professional, even if it is something they aren’t naturally comfortable opening up about. As it is a problem that is not widely talked about, many men feel ashamed about asking for help, but this shouldn’t be the case!
“The social stigma that exists around men approaching a medical professional to talk about their hormones can be extremely damaging. It’s important that men understand how their hormones can affect them, and that if they’re struggling, it is okay and normal to seek help. There are many ways the effects can be lessened”.
Doctor Fiona McRae, specialist in men’s hormonal health and bioidentical hormones
Once an individual seeks the help of a hormone specialist they will be educated on the different options available to help the effects of decreased testosterone. Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT) is commonly seen as the best course of action for them to regain control of their life.
What is TRT?
Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) is used to restore the balance of testosterone levels in the body by replacing the depleted testosterone. At The Marion Gluck Clinic we do this using bioidentical hormones, which are identical to the testosterone in the body. TRT can be administered in a range of different ways which includes injections, transdermal patches, lozenges and topical creams.
It is important to note that while TRT can have life-changing results, in some cases it can have adverse effects on the body (this will be discussed in more detail during your initial consultation). For some, it can affect their sperm count. So, if you are considering having children or see children as an option in the future, it may not be considered a viable option.
The effects of TRT will vary from patient to patient, but it is generally expected that the results will be noticeable after around eight weeks of treatment.
What to do if you think you may need TRT
If you feel that you or your partner may be suffering from low testosterone, the first step is booking an initial consultation at a clinic such as ours that specialises hormone-balancing therapy. Once one of our specialist doctors has assessed your condition you will be sent for the appropriate blood tests and screenings. A bioidentical hormone treatment will then be prescribed that is tailored to your needs. To ensure the best results, we typically combine this with supplements and lifestyle changes to help boost testosterone naturally at the same time.
If you feel that you relate to any of the information mentioned above, or you’ve caught yourself thinking “Do I need testosterone replacement therapy?”, or even if you’ve noticed that your partner is displaying any signs of low testosterone, and you think he would benefit from testosterone replacement therapy, we would encourage you to get in touch with us for a consultation.