Testosterone is a hormone produced primarily in the testicles for men and the ovaries and adrenal glands for women. It plays an essential role in the development and maintenance of typical masculine physical traits such as muscle mass, strength, and growth of facial and body hair. Testosterone levels generally peak during adolescence and early adulthood and gradually decline as a person ages, typically about 1% a year after age 30 or 40.
Low testosterone levels can result in various physical changes such as increased body fat, reduced muscle bulk, and strength, as well as decreased bone density.
Testosterone therapy is available in the form of injections, pellets, patches, or gels, but it also comes with potential risks and side effects. It’s essential to talk to a doctor about the risks and benefits before considering testosterone therapy.
What happens to testosterone levels with age?
As age, their testosterone levels tend to decline. This decline typically occurs by about 1% a year after the age of 30 or 40, and can result in a number of signs and symptoms, such as reduced muscle mass and strength, decreased bone density, and less energy.
However, it’s important to note that not all of these symptoms are necessarily caused by low testosterone levels. Men can experience a variety of changes and symptoms as they age, and many of them can stem from other factors, such as medication side effects, diabetes, or depression.
If you’re concerned about your testosterone levels, it’s important to talk to your doctor to determine the best course of action.
What happens if I take testosterone?
Testosterone is a hormone that plays a vital role in the development and maintenance of masculine physical features, such as muscle mass and body hair growth.
As men age, their testosterone levels begin to gradually decline, leading to a number of uncomfortable symptoms ranging from reduced sexual drive and infertility to decreased bone density and muscle bulk.
Those who opt for testosterone therapy may experience improved libido, muscle mass and strength, body composition, mood, cognitive function and quality of life.
Benefits of testosterone therapy for men
Test therapy can offer numerous benefits for men who have low testosterone levels due to aging or medical conditions.
Research indicates that testosterone replacement therapy can help improve sexual function, increase muscle mass and strength, and increase bone density.
Additionally, many men report an improvement in energy levels, mood, and quality of erections.
Side effects of taking testosterone
While testosterone therapy can offer potential benefits, there are also significant side effects to consider.
The risks of taking testosterone include worsening sleep apnea, acne or other skin reactions, noncancerous prostate growth, fertility issues, limited sperm production, and blood clot risk.
Testosterone replacement therapy could also potentially stimulate the growth of prostate cancer cells.
Long-term use of testosterone therapy, specifically for older men, has been linked to increased cardiovascular risks such as heart attacks, strokes, and deaths from heart disease.
Therefore, it’s essential to discuss the risks and benefits of testosterone therapy with a doctor before making any decisions.
Can teenagers and men under 30 take testosterone?
It is not recommended for teenagers to take testosterone boosters as their bodies are still developing and cannot handle large amounts of externally supplied testosterone.
Overloading on testosterone through boosters or steroids can have negative impacts on teenagers, including stunted growth, male breast syndrome, and an excessively active sex drive.
Additionally, testosterone production naturally increases during puberty, and overproduction of the hormone can lead to unwanted symptoms like penile enlargement, excessive hair growth, and voice deepening.
Therefore, it’s best to use appropriate aids according to recommendations.
As for men under 30, testosterone therapy is not typically recommended unless they have a diagnosed medical condition that affects their testosterone levels.
Can you take testosterone for life?
Taking for life is not advisable. Testosterone therapy is intended to treat low testosterone levels and its associated symptoms. The prescription and dosage of testosterone therapy should be closely monitored by a doctor to ensure that the treatment is safe and effective.
Long-term use of testosterone can have potential risks, including worsened sleep apnea, acne or skin reactions, benign prostatic hyperplasia, limiting sperm production or causing testicles to shrink, too much red blood cell production, and increasing the risk of heart disease.
Do you need a doctor’s permission to take testosterone?
If you are considering taking testosterone therapy, it is important to talk to your doctor first. Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) can only be prescribed by a qualified medical practitioner.
During your consultation, your doctor will perform a physical exam, discuss your symptoms, and conduct blood testing to assess your hormone levels. They will also want to rule out any serious underlying causes of low testosterone, such as a pituitary tumor.
It is critical to have medical supervision when taking testosterone, as TRT may cause potential health risks such as swelling of the prostate gland, increased blood count, and acne. Always consult with your doctor before making any decisions about your health.