Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy for men
Suffering from male menopause?
Most men suffer for years before acknowledging that they’re not who they used to be. Indeed, it comes as a direct blow to their ego to admit they are losing their edge. When symptoms are mild, men go through typical denial - “I’m just tired, overworked, stressed” etc. etc. The truth is that they are making lower and lower levels of testosterone and it’s showing. In particular, men hate to admit or discuss changes in sexual performance or libido. With lowering levels of testosterone, they also get frustrated and irritable more often, their confidence diminishes, energy declines, body composition changes and mental sharpness decreases.
Until recently, hormone replacement therapy was only focused on women. But with new technologies and innovative research, it’s now gaining more awareness among men as well. Testosterone is the male hormone of fertility, with the ability to convert to other hormones, most importantly estrogen. Men also need estrogen, but not in the same ratio or quantity as women. Decades of medical research in hormone replacement and therapy have shown that testosterone has important benefits in male health and the cardiovascular system, yet there has been confusion owing to manipulated data.
In short, testosterone is necessary for healthy aging in men. It interacts with many other hormones, and also converts to other important steroid hormones. A loss of this important male hormone can manifest as loss of wellbeing in many areas of daily life:
- Loss of memory and motor skills - Testosterone has a powerful effect on the brain. Declining levels reduce mental sharpness, memory, concentration and confidence. Sleep quality and mental sharpness are also compromised. Men often become more impatient and irritable with age, directly related to a decline in testosterone. Yet, unlike female menopause, andropause or male menopause has no clear definition and is an arbitrary definition of low testosterone that occurs with aging. It is typically experienced around the same age that women experience menopause, however, and brings a similarly accelerated decline in mental and physical health.
- Loss of muscle mass and strength - Decreasing testosterone changes body composition. Gaining and maintaining muscle mass becomes harder, while accumulation of fat becomes easier. Energy levels decline, contributing to the decline in overall health.
- Loss of libido and difficulty ‘performing’ - Declining libido and sexual performance are some of the first signs of decreasing testosterone that men realize. Unfortunately, it takes a long time for many to admit to these subtle changes.
- BPH (benign prostatic hypertrophy) - With decreasing testosterone levels, the prostate gland enlarges. This is thought to be caused by a change in the testosterone to estrogen ratio. Men find that their urine flow becomes weak, often referred to as “dribbling”.
- Diabetes - Testosterone has been shown to help control blood glucose and increase insulin sensitivity in men.
It’s about testosterone
Testosterone levels change throughout your life, peaking in your 20’s. Once you reach your early 30’s, a very gradual decline sets in. Usually, it’s just one or two percent a year. By the time you’re in your early 40’s, however, you’ve lost from ten to twenty per cent. While by the time you reach your 70’s, you’re down to around 10% of the levels you had in your mid-20’s.
Some men take testosterone-like products from the Internet to enhance bodybuilding. However, this can be harmful in the long term. Muscle building is just one of the results of testosterone. Without proper dosing and monitoring, the negative effects can also increase. Fortunately, a proper hormone replacement regimen allows the male body to replicate the benefits of naturally produced testosterone.
Symptoms of low testosterone are also an indication of declining health. Yet, as we’ve said, men can remain unaware of the issues surrounding hormone loss. Often, they don’t even hear the term “andropause”. Although awareness is increasing through media like TV ads, it’s important to find a physician who understands how to properly dose and monitor testosterone replacement. The Anti-aging Medical Centre in Chicago offers a safe, simple and scientific bioidentical hormone replacement therapy program for replacing testosterone in men. Specialist doctors such as Dr. Selma can advise you on restoring your levels effectively and safely.
And what symptoms should you look for? There are a range of symptoms of low testosterone, which are most likely to become evident between between your early 40’s and mid-50’s.
- Change in body composition
- Weight gain with increase in fat
- Lower energy
- Reduced mental sharpness
- Reduced memory
- Decrease in confidence
- Insomnia, poor sleep
- Decreased sexual performance and libido
- Increased fatigue
- Muscle aches
- Bone weakness
- Heart disease
- Changes in mood
- Decreased stamina
Customized bioidentical hormone therapy for men
Aging presents a predictable problem - with a simple, natural solution. Correctly restoring your hormone balance is the natural and logical way to maintain good health.
With decades of scientific research to support it, hormone replacement can benefit men as well as women. However, hormones are powerful molecules that need to be carefully administered and monitored. Different men not only need different amounts, but also have different internal responses. It means that testosterone should be replaced by a physician who understands how to correctly administer and monitor the therapy.
In particular, hormone levels should be adjusted to fall within the personal optimal range. Too much of a hormone can give undesirable effects, just as too little does. An experienced physician can provide hormone balance to best suit your individual needs.
Testing should also be done judiciously. Studies have shown blood testing to be more predictable, accurate and reliable than saliva testing, for estrogen, progesterone and testosterone alike. However, again it’s important to know how to best use these tests to obtain optimal information. An experienced and knowledgeable physician will request the right tests at the right time to assist in achieving hormonal balance.
It is important to report to your physician all pertinent medical history, for example any history of prior androgen use, hormone therapy or surgery such as vasectomy. Any use of narcotic pain medication should also be reported, as this will affect testosterone levels.
Once hormone balance is achieved, periodic monitoring is necessary for many reasons. Although not very common, changes can take place in the body which require dose adjustments. Other medications and environmental changes can also affect hormone dynamics.
Fortunately, with high quality hormones, adequate monitoring of clinical symptoms and labs, hormone replacement becomes a seamless, hassle free part of your daily routine, allowing you to live a healthy functional life. And remember that men and women can both benefit greatly from bioidentical hormone replacement therapy or BHRT. Over the decades, it’s been women who have gained more attention due to the abrupt, distressing symptoms of menopause. Yet although men do not have these extreme warning signs, they too suffer the consequences of low hormone levels.
Essentially, testosterone is crucial to your well-being as a man. Replacing diminishing levels can result in a dramatic boost to your entire health and vitality. However, every man has his personal range of optimal testosterone levels, which need to be fine-tuned by a trained physician. The Anti-Aging Medical Group in Chicago offers bioidentical hormone replacement therapy for men with safe and correct replacement of testosterone, while monitoring essential parameters. Combined with a healthy diet and exercise regime, we can give you what you need to function at your full potential.