Warning Signs of Low Testosterone


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Hormonal changes in men often don’t receive as much attention as comparable changes in women, simply because a man’s testosterone often doesn’t “drop” as drastically as a woman’s estrogen levels do. However, men still experience a natural decline in levels as they age, known as andropause, and anything lower than 300 nanograms per deciliter is considered “low” testosterone. Although a woman often has testing for hormone levels, men typically don’t. Here are some things to look out for that could indicate testing is necessary:

  1. Problems in the bedroom. A reduction in sex drive and issues achieving an erection can both point to a dip in testosterone levels. Likewise, a reduction in semen volume (to the point it’s noticeable) could also be the result of a reduction in testosterone. Although slight fluctuations in all of these areas are normal, a drastic drop can indicate an issue.
  2. Lack of energy. In men, testosterone has one of the biggest impacts on energy levels. If you’re suddenly tired despite no changes in your daily life or sleeping schedule, low-testosterone could be the issue.
  3. Loss of body hair or muscle mass. Testosterone is responsible for both of these. Balding is common among men; however, body hair usually stays in place unless testosterone levels dip too low. Likewise, loss of muscle (despite no changes in activity) in the arms, chest, and legs can also indicate a problem.
  4. Changes in mood. The media places a good amount of emphasis on “hormonal mood swings” in women. However, testosterone plays a role in how a man feels as well, and a change in levels can result in a change in mood. Depression, increased stress, irritability, and the inability to focus can all point to low testosterone.

As with anything that has such a far-reaching impact on one’s life, deciding to get tested for low-testosterone, or even having the presence of mind to notice the signs, can be difficult. Keep in mind that the testing is incredibly easy (just a simple blood panel) and knowing the results can help you reverse these markers and feel like yourself again.