Testosterone is an important hormone that both men and women have, but which is present at far higher levels in men. It is used for a lot of processes in the body and when testosterone levels are lower than the normal range, men can experience health problems.
Low Testosterone and Ageing
Low testosterone can occur in men of any age, but is vastly more common in men over 60. 20% of men in the 60-70 age range have low testosterone, and this rises to 30% over 70. The older the man, the more likely low testosterone could be to blame for the symptoms we are going to talk about here. Low testosterone can be treated fairly easily once diagnosed. You can find out more about testosterone in older men at livelongstayyoung.com.
So, what are signs your testosterone may have dropped below normal levels?
Testosterone plays a big part in the male sex drive, and so ‘low T' men tend to notice a big decline in their desire to have sex. Actually, the sex drives of most men do decrease with age, but a big, noticeable drop-off in libido is usually a good reason to get your testosterone levels checked, even if it isn't really causing any relationship issues. Low testosterone can negatively affect things like bone health, so it is important to get it treated even if you don't really mind having a lower sex drive.
You may also have erectile dysfunction. Testosterone itself doesn't cause you to get an erection, but it is involved and so while a lot of other things can cause this problem, low T could be to blame, especially if you have other symptoms.
Some men also notice a decrease in semen volume when they do ejaculate.
Hair Loss – Especially On The Face And Body
Hair loss in men can often be seen as a normal sign of ageing, and on the head, it is more likely to be a hereditary thing than low T. However, if you are losing body hair or facial hair, the growth of which is controlled by testosterone levels, this can be a warning sign to get a blood serum test done and see if you need testosterone therapy. Male pattern baldness does not usually affect the beard or body hair.
Changes In Body Composition
The higher testosterone levels men have compared to women are the reason why men have a lower fat to muscle ratio, as testosterone causes muscular growth.
This means that a man whose testosterone levels are in decline may well notice changes in the composition of their bodies. While weight gain is a part of this, weight gain is something everyone, male and female, has to deal with in middle age and older. What is more likely to be a sign of low T is where weight gain is coupled with a decrease in muscle mass, or if you have started to see an increase in breast tissue.
A simple test can tell you if you need treatment for low testosterone, so if you are worried you are experiencing symptoms that could be related, make an appointment to get a blood test right away!