The hormone testosterone is responsible for men’s masculinity. It is responsible for male features such as a deep voice, muscular build, and facial hair, and is produced by the testicles. Testosterone also promotes red blood cell production, improves mood, keeps bones strong, and improves thinking capacity. Low testosterone, sometimes known as low-t, can induce a variety of unpleasant symptoms.
Testosterone levels peak in early adulthood and gradually decline as you get older, dropping by roughly 1% to 2% every year starting in your 40s. Impotence or changes in sexual desire, sadness or anxiety, lower muscle mass, less energy, weight gain, anaemia, and hot flashes are all signs and symptoms that men may experience when they approach their 50s and beyond. While low testosterone levels are a natural aspect of growing older, several factors might speed the process.
Testosterone therapy for low levels
To begin therapy, most men must have both low testosterone levels in their blood and many symptoms of low testosterone.
It’s possible to have low levels without exhibiting any symptoms. However, because the therapy’s long-term safety is unknown, it is not recommended if you do not have any major symptoms, particularly weariness and sexual dysfunction, which are the most common.
Low-t therapy is not necessarily the first course of action, even if your levels are low and you have symptoms. If your doctor can pinpoint the cause of your falling levels, such as weight increase or a certain medicine, he or she can address it first.
The following are low-t risk factors:
- injury or infection
- chemotherapy or radiation treatment for cancer
- medications, especially hormones used to treat prostate cancer and corticosteroid drugs
- chronic illness
According to the Harvard Special Health Report Men’s Health: Fifty and Forward, if you and your doctor believe testosterone replacement therapy is correct for you, there are a range of delivery systems to explore. Biote provides following treatments for low T:
Skin patch. A patch that distributes little amounts of the hormone into the skin once every 24 hours, in the evening, is applied.
Gels. Topical gels are applied to the upper arms, shoulders, and thighs on a daily basis. To avoid exposing people to testosterone, wash your hands after applying it and cover the treated area with clothing.
Pellets. These are placed under the skin, generally around the hips or buttocks, and release testosterone over time. Every three to six months, they are replaced.
Injections. Every seven to fourteen days, different formulations are administered. Testosterone levels can jump for a few days following the injection and then gradually drop, causing a roller-coaster effect in which mood and energy levels spike and then drop.
Most men notice a difference in their symptoms within four to six weeks on testosterone replacement medication, however other changes, such as increased muscle mass, may take three to six months.