You probably read the headline and went ‘Woah, is there such a thing as male menopause, and if there is; I know I will not experience it’; or it made you do a double take and you might have freaked out, just a ‘lil bit.
Truth is, you probably did experience it but you were not aware of it; as some men associate menopause with the dramatic hormone plunge that women experience.
Before we go any further, male menopause is nothing like the menopause you’re used to hearing about the sex hormone changes gradually within men.
Allow me to put your mind at ease by giving you the signs, symptoms and treatment options:
Male Menopause Debunked
Doctors refer to so-called male menopause “andropause” to describe aging-related hormone changes in men. Female menopause and so-called male menopause are two different situations (you just breathed a sigh of relief there). Yet, women’s ovulation ends and hormone production increases within a fairly short period of time.
On the other hand, a man’s hormone production and testosterone bioavailability (the proportion of a drug or other substance that enters the circulation when introduced into the body and is able to have an active effect); declines over a period of many years and the outcomes aren’t necessarily evident.
Grasping Your Male Hormones
As testosterone levels vary greatly amongst men, as generally older men tend to have reduced levels of testosterone then younger men; with testosterone levels declining gradually throughout adulthood. According to Mayo Clinic “about 1 percent a year after age 30 on average.”
Low Testosterone Levels
The only way to identify whether you have low levels or a reduction in the bioavailability of testosterone is by taking a blood test. “Some men have a lower than normal testosterone level without signs or symptoms. In this case, no treatment is needed”.
However, for some men, low testosterone levels might bring on:
- Changes in sexual function, such as erectile dysfunction, a lowered sexual desire and less impromptu erections (during sleep) and infertility. This will lead to your testes shrinking.
- Sleep patterns being altered, it could give you sleepless nights, cause sleep disturbances such as insomnia and sleepiness.
- Physical changes, various physical changes is a possibility, more body fat, reduced muscle strength, bulk and decreased bone density. You might experience hot flashes.
Emotional changes, you know the changes that are synonymous with women; could also happen to you. Not as motivated or a lowered self-confidence, you might have an issue concentrating or remembering things
Keep in mind that some of these factors could be associated with other underlying factors other than low testosterone.
Feel Your Best
If you are faced with signs and symptoms that could be the result of a low testosterone level, go see a doctor as he or she can assess the possible causes as to why you feel a certain way and explain treatment options.
These steps, according to Mayo Clinic these could help increase your testosterone levels: Be honest with your doctor, make healthy lifestyle choices, seek help if you feel down and be wary of herbal supplements.
With many testosterone treatments (like testosterone replacement therapy) around, it is best to consult with your doctor on which would be the best route to take.
Still feel that so-called male menopause does not exist? Let us know what you think.
Sources: Mayo Clinic and Medical Daily