Everything You Need To Know About Low Testosterone Levels

by graham

Low Testosterone

Having low testosterone level is not a rare thing amongst men. Even though you are not suffering from this, you might already hear this from a friend, commercials and several advertisements.

Sometimes you are slightly asked if you are experiencing its symptoms, without even knowing that they are actually referring to low testosterone.

Are you suffering from a “low t”? Do you have doubts about it? Worry no more and supply yourself with credible information from this article.

What is Low Testosterone?

Low testosterone or “low t” is a word which is coined by medical professionals to refer to the abnormal or decreased level of testosterone level in your body. It is a hormone which is formed by the adrenal glands: testes for males and ovaries for females.

If you are wondering why men have masculine built, then the answer is already right under your nose: testosterone. It is the one responsible for the occurrence of male characteristics. It includes deep voice, larger bones, facial hair and fast muscle development.

The production of the testosterone is a natural part of your body system. And sometimes, you will experience having a low level of testosterone production. Medical professionals may sometimes refer testosterone deficiency as having levels of testosterone under 300 ng/g.

Having low testosterone is more prevalent amongst men than women. In fact, the people who are most affected by low testosterone level is at a large-scale. Check the facts from the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists and American College of Endocrinology [1] below to see how common low testosterone is in our current society:

  • Testosterone deficiency is usually present to obese men.
  • Typically, low testosterone starts in adult men.
  • Men who have type 2 diabetes are more susceptible to testosterone deficiency.

Also, reduced testosterone levels also mean that some of your bodily functions are not working properly. Here are some of the responsibilities of testosterone in our body which also greatly affects our body once a change or sudden decrease occurs:

  • Production of red blood cells
  • Fat distribution
  • Sperm production
  • Bone density
  • Sex drive
  • Muscle strength

How to Increase Testosterone Levels?

If your testosterone levels are decreasing, there are also numerous ways on how you can conquer it and increase your testosterone levels.

It might be through taking certain medications, supplement or just simply boosting your testosterone levels naturally. To give you an idea about that, we’ve rounded up some of the ways on how you can increase your testosterone level [2].

Lose Some Weight
By losing those extra pounds in your body, you become fitter and more active. Thus, it will elevate your testosterone level.

According to a study[3] involving numerous men as the sample, those men who took a diet with low-calorie and lost weight within 12 months showed a major increase in the level of their testosterone compared to those who did not shed some pounds.

Go Out And Exercise
Although there is a variety of an exercise, you should consider resistance or weight training exercises. These exercises leave a massive impact when your testosterone level is involved.

Observe Your Foods
Certain foods contain nutrients that help your endocrine system to function better. This way, your testosterone will also be put in a good condition. To choose the right food, consider those foods which contain healthy fats.

One study [4] even stated how eating less healthy fats cause detrimental effects to your testosterone level.

Enhancing Vitamin D Supply
Vitamin D plays a big role in your testosterone level. By adding enough vitamin D in your body, you are bound to having a better testosterone level. It is already proven in research [5] wherein those men who are less exposed to the sun experienced lower testosterone levels.

Taking Some Supplements
Several over-the-counter supplements are available and effective in boosting testosterone levels.

But before you buy your own supplement, make sure that you evaluate your health condition properly and will not risk anything about your health just to increase your testosterone level. It is advised to visit a medical professional before consuming any supplement.

Improving Your Zinc Supply
Aside from the other uses of zinc, it is also known as a great nutrient in boosting testosterone levels. This claim is supported by a study [6] wherein men are tested for the effects of zinc in their testosterone level.
It is concluded that males who have more zinc have a tendency of a testosterone which is higher than those who don’t.

Getting A Good Sleep
If you don’t get enough sleep, your body tends to have testosterone deficiency. This is because disrupted sleep is actually one of the causes of low testosterone as it causes stress to the people affected.

To boost your testosterone level, try to make your bedtime more comfortable and make sure that you get enough, quality sleep every night.

Avoiding Sugars
An increased or high intake of sugars makes a person’s insulin level rise. Although it may look unrelated to testosterone, this actually leads to a low testosterone level.

Simply because sugars also affect your blood, then it affects your testosterone after. In short, increasing your testosterone level means decreasing your sugar intake.

Avoid Stressing Yourself
Although this one seems impossible for some people, especially for those who are working on a tight schedule, you can still try to lessen your stress level. Stress is related to cortisol- and cortisol makes you drop those lean muscles that you have.

With the reduced lean muscles in your body, you will gain more body fat and it is now obvious how stress ruined your testosterone level: obesity.

Avoid Alcohol And Drug Abuse
This one is not just relevant in terms of dealing with testosterone levels. But consuming too much alcohol and drugs will greatly harm your body.

And it will even reduce your testosterone level! Although some people who are already used to drinking too much and has a history of drug abuse will find this hard, just try to cut your alcohol or drug intake slowly. This will make your testosterone level increase slowly, but surely.

What Are The Causes And Symptoms Of Low Testosterone?

We all know the importance of testosterone in our body. It serves numerous functions in our body systems. Once a decrease in the level of testosterone occurred, a huge change will also happen in our body.

But some people choose to disregard the symptoms of low testosterone. And we narrowed-down their reasons into two: they are not aware of the symptoms or they just don’t care at all. To enlighten your mind, here are the causes and symptoms of low testosterone:

For the causes of low testosterone, it was divided into three groups:

1.Primary – At this stage, the organs which are responsible for producing testosterone (testes and ovaries) fail. These organs may be suffering from different injuries such as mumps, chemotherapy, orchitis, chromosomal abnormalities and much more.

2.Secondary – In this category, low testosterone is simply caused by a regulation in your pituitary gland.

3.Tertiary – While in the third category, the cause is your hypothalamus, which is the one responsible for the regulation of your glands.

On a related note, you can experience many causes [7] at the same time. These circumstances include:

  • Hypothalamus or pituitary related tumors.
  • Defects in the gland.
  • Chemotherapy near tumors.
  • Inflammation in glands caused by sarcoidosis, HIV, and tuberculosis.
  • Reduced gland blood flows without any specific reason.
  • Consuming muscle mass enhancing anabolic steroids.

Aside from those, there are other some diseases [8] which affect the testosterone levels greatly. The following diseases and habits make the production of your testosterone decrease:

  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Renal disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Drug abuse
  • Smoking
  • Testicle injuries
  • Alcohol abuse
  • HIV
  • Thyroid problems
  • Type-2 diabetes
  • Genetic abnormalities
  • Medications
  • Gland problems

Meanwhile, there are also some symptoms [9] that you may experience if you are suffering from low testosterone.
Aside from erectile dysfunction, there are still a lot of other symptoms that you should be aware when it comes to low testosterone. You may experience decrease or change in the following aspects:

Sexual Desire

Sexual Drive Affected
Since testosterone affects your hormone, your sexual drive might be greatly affected. You might feel that you are not interested in engaging in any sexual activity.

This will affect your gender performance in your relationship. To specify this, you will experience the following events if you have low testosterone:

  • Less or absence of orgasm
  • Less or absence of sex drive
  • Less or absence of erection

Emotional Aspect

Your hormones affect your emotion. Therefore, a decrease in your testosterone level will also affect your emotions.
Your testosterone is involved in your emotional regulation and sudden emotional changes are actually linked to low testosterone or change in your testosterone level. In this aspect, you will experience the following:

  • Depression
  • Sudden sadness
  • Irritability
  • Fatigue
  • Lack of sharp memory
  • Lack of concentration

But some signs are not easily diagnosed. You will need some equipment and guidance of a health professional to diagnose the following symptoms:

  • Anemia
  • Less or absence of sperm production
  • Osteoporosis
  • Increase in your body mass index

Physical Aspect

Excessive Sweating
When you hit puberty, your body undergoes a huge increase in testosterone level. This is the reason why you experience several changes in your body during puberty. And it is the same as when you age and you suffer in a declining amount of testosterone in your body.

In fact, your testosterone is the reason why you developed a more masculine built. At the same time, low testosterone will also lead to numerous changes in your physical aspect [10] such as:

  • Loss of natural body hairs such as armpit, facial and pubic hair
  • Excessive sweating
  • Weakening of muscles
  • Weakening of bones
  • Breast tenderness
  • Increased body mass index
  • For men, the size of their testes size is reduced
  • For women, breast enlargement and discomfort is experienced

Although the physical change affects both men and women, there is still a huge difference when it comes to the occurrence in the two. Apparently, testosterone is more oblivious to men than women. You can see this at one glance since testosterone gives a masculine physique. And men have stronger built than women who mostly have a feminine physique.

Sleeping Pattern

If you are suffering from low testosterone level, then you might also be experiencing insomnia and decreased energy levels. It can also lead to sleep apnea if it is not addressed properly.

In sleeping apnea, you will suddenly start and stop breathing continuously as you sleep. Dealing with those issues will disturb your sleep pattern. Also, low testosterone can lead to the disruption of your sleeping pattern the same way sleeping pattern affects your testosterone level.

In this case, you might want to consider numerous sleeping aids. One of the best choices in dealing with disrupted sleeping patterns are some sleeping medications which will help you get a good night sleep.

How Can I Prevent Low Testosterone?

Prevention is always better than any other treatment that you will find out there.
Some will always say this to you if they are a certain disease that you might get. And it is true that finding ways to establish yourself and prevent the disease is easier than finding a solution to the damage caused by a low testosterone.

Although some of the causes for low testosterone are from genetic factors, others can still try to alter their lifestyle to prevent testosterone deficiency. Many of our existing habits affect testosterone levels without you noticing it. Some of the things that you can do now are:

  • Chemotherapy
  • Avoid smoking
  • Avoid alcohol abuse
  • Avoid drug abuse
  • Lose weight

What Are The Treatments And Medications Of Low Testosterone?

Exercise Routine Habit
With the great technology today, low testosterone is not a one-way problem anymore. There are several medication and treatment that you can avail almost everywhere to treat your low testosterone level.

But keep in mind that not all of this medication is applicable to your case. You must observe your situation and the extremeness of your case before you take any medications.

Also, you need to know the cause of your low testosterone to get the correct treatments. It is always the best to see a doctor and get a professional advice to deal with your low testosterone problem properly.
Some actions that they may require you to undergo are the following:

  • Weight loss
  • Testosterone supplements
  • Exercise
  • Therapy

Aside from that, testosterone can be transferred to one’s body in several ways. It is also considered as a treatment for testosterone deficiency. These includes:

  • Gel or Patches containing testosterone: Such patches should be applied directly to akin in a place where other people will not be able to touch it.
  • Mouth patch or also known as the “Buccal System”: It is a patch in the shape of a tablet, which is applied to your mouth. It is advised to replace the mouth patch after 12 hours.
  • Muscle injections: Such injections will increase your muscles with the additional testosterone supplied to your body. It is recommended to take muscle injections after every week. It can be injected by a health professional or be performed individually.
  • Testosterone pellets: These pellets have testosterone in it which can be released in your body in the next 3 to 4 months. Pellets should be placed underneath the backside of your skin.

Even though one of these mediations guarantee you a full recovery from low testosterone, there are still some risks that you should be aware of:

  • Skin problems such as acne.
  • A blood clot may form in the vein in your body.
  • A surge in the growth of prostate cancer (if you currently have this disease).
  • Increased prostate.
  • More prone to stroke and heart attack.
  • Aggravated sleep issues.
  • Reduced sperm production.
  • For women, there is an increase in breast size.

Remember that the side effects will vary on your case. If you are suffering from delayed puberty, certain medications might cause your bones to discontinue growing. It is advised to consult a medical professional in dealing with these issues.
On another note, some would prefer to stay on the safe side. These people have several considerations before taking certain therapy and medications. Some are:

  • Currently suffering from kidney, liver or heart disease.
  • If you are having symptoms or positive in prostate cancer.
  • If you are having symptoms of positive in breast cancer.

Aside from that, the treatment will vary depending on your gender. If you are a male who is suffering from low testosterone, there will be two approaches to treat your low testosterone:

  • If your testosterone deficiency is caused by diseases such as tumors, diabetes, HIV, and obesity, you should opt for customized treatment which specifically addresses your case.
  • You can consume supplements as long as it is prescribed by a medical professional. In fact, one study proved that consuming the proper supplements that cohere with your personal qualities has a significant effect on your testosterone level.

For the moment, there is still no specific guideline to follow for testosterone deficiency in women. However, doctors prescribe different supplements which contains both estrogen and testosterone to treat that deficiency in women especially post menopausal.

There are not enough studies till now to show how safe and efficient this treatment approach for testosterone deficiency.

If you are not into supplements, you might consider therapies which might be good in increasing your testosterone level. This way, you won’t experience severe, detrimental side effects. But remember that people who also have prostate cancer are not allowed to undergo a testosterone therapy because of the risks that it poses to people.

What Are The Precautions And Self-Care Of Low Testosterone?

Precautions And Self-Care Of Low Testosterone
For every medication that we take, there still certain precautions that we should adhere to. These will help you to recuperate better. Also, taking medications doesn’t mean that you should overlook any symptom or change in the progression of your testosterone level.

There is another published research [11] demonstrating the number of men who bought several medications to treat low testosterone levels.

Most of them are 40 years old and above. The number tripled, but the problem is that most of them bought the supplements abruptly without asking any advice from a medical professional.
Here are some self-care instructions that you need to follow based on the medication that you are taking:

  • When visiting a doctor make sure that you stated your medical history without any lapses. Missing details might lead to wrong prescriptions and may give off detrimental effects to the user.
  • Choose the right medication for you based on your situation.
  • When applying a transdermal patch, consider your skin parts which do not sweat excessively or prone to pressure. Also, you should not apply the patch to an irritated skin or open wounds. It is advised to apply not more than one patch, daily.
  • When applying a mouth patch, you should never swallow or chew the patch. Consider applying the patch to each side of your mouth. It is recommended to use a patch two times a day.
  • Whenever an implant or injection is administered to you, make sure that it was given to you in a period of 1-4 weeks.
  • When applying a topical gel for testosterone, make sure that you are able to follow the directions written on the label. Also, keep in mind that the patch should not touch another person. After using this, consider an ample interval before taking a bath. It is advised to use a topical gel once a day.

See More: Low Sex Drive? Eat These 15 Aphrodisiac Foods for A Quick Libido Boost

Conclusion

Low testosterone is a common thing that occurs in mostly in men at some point in their lives. Many people choose to disregard the symptoms, but some want to explore the nature of low testosterone in order to cure it.

It is an event wherein there is a decrease or failure in your testosterone production. It can lead to several problems involving relationships or simply your appearance itself.

Be sure to observe the symptoms in order to avoid long-term and difficult treatments for low testosterone.
Even if you are already consuming medications, you should still be careful. But since you are susceptible to experiencing low testosterone, there are ways to increase your testosterone levels.

It might be natural or by taking certain supplements. In any case, it is still best to see a doctor before taking any action with regards to your low testosterone problem.

Image Credits
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