9 Signs You May Be Suffering from Diminished Testosterone
Throughout your life, your testosterone has played a critical
role in your physical and mental health. And it’s easy to take all of this
behind-the-scenes work for granted as long as everything is going smoothly. As with most
things in life, however, it’s only when something goes missing that you understand the
real influence it had, which is certainly true of testosterone.
At LaSara Medical Group, our team of men’s
health experts understands the role that testosterone plays in your health and, more
importantly, what to do when these hormone levels dip.
The first step is recognizing the signs of diminished
testosterone levels, which are both readily apparent and subtle. Here’s a look at some
of those obvious and not-so-obvious red flags.
1. Sexual health
Let’s start with one of the clearer warning signs that you
may have diminished testosterone levels — a decrease in sexual health. Testosterone is
produced by your testicles and oversees your reproductive health, which includes your
sex drive. If your libido isn’t what it used to be or you’re suffering from erectile
dysfunction, lower-than-normal testosterone levels may be to blame.
2. Loss of muscle
Aside from your sexual health, your testosterone encourages
lean muscle mass. If you’re losing muscle mass, despite keeping up with your regular
exercise regimen, this could be attributed to low T.
3. Loss of energy
Another common complaint among those with low T is feeling
excessively fatigued, despite getting adequate sleep. If your energy levels are low, it
may be because your testosterone levels are low, which has both a direct and an indirect
effect on your ability to get up and go. Testosterone supplies you with energy directly,
but a loss in muscle mass can also leave you feeling less energetic.
4. Weight gain
Since your testosterone controls your lean muscle mass, if
you have diminished levels of the hormone, your body may convert more energy into fat
rather than muscle.
5. Male breasts
In more moderate-to-severe cases of low T, you may develop
excessive breast tissue, which is called gynecomastia. Men and women produce both
estrogen and testosterone hormones, but in wildly different ratios, giving us our female
and male characteristics. If your testosterone levels are low, your estrogen hormones
may have more influence, which is why some men develop enlarged breast tissue.
As we mentioned in the beginning, testosterone affects your
physical and mental health, which means that low T can lead to mood problems, such as
anxiety or irritability. Of course, these mood problems may also stem from the other
negative effects that low T brings on, but the bottom line is that, whether direct or
indirect, low T can impact your mental state.
7. Memory problems
Researchers have found that testosterone may affect your memory. So, if you find yourself struggling with recall, it may be
worthwhile to see if diminished testosterone is causing the problem.
8. Loss of body hair
Another sign of low T is a loss of body hair, including the
hair on your face. Even though most men lose hair with age, if you’re experiencing a
premature loss of body hair, it may be due to a decline in testosterone.
9. You just aren’t feeling like yourself
Although we tried to be specific in outlining the more common
red flags when it comes to low T, its effects can vary considerably from one man to the
next. Sometimes a patient comes in complaining that he’s, “just not feeling like
himself,” and that’s reason enough for us to take a look at whether hormone levels may
be to blame.
If you’re experiencing one or more of these symptoms, it’s
time to come in and have us run a simple test to determine your testosterone levels. The
good news is that, if we find that they’re low, we can tailor a hormone replacement therapy to your unique needs to restore your quality of life.
To learn more about hormone replacement therapy and low T,
please contact one of
our offices in the Sawtelle neighborhood of Los Angeles, or our Encinitas location in
San Diego, or our office in Tustin, California.