Andropause is another name for low testosterone. Andropause symptoms can sometimes be confused with just getting older, but andropause is a real condition.
Men and women both are familiar with menopause, or the so-called “Change of Life” that women go through. Hot flashes, sleep disorders, loss of libido, are just some of the symptoms that women must endure as their hormonal levels drop as they age beyond their child-bearing years.
But guys, did you know that you too experience a similar condition as your hormone levels decline, known as andropause?
“Andro” for man or male, and “pause” for stop or cease, andropause is the name given to the range of symptoms from lack of strength and vitality to decreased sexual function that men experience due to falling levels of the most important male hormones, also known as “androgens.”
Low Testosterone and Andropause
The most important male hormone, or androgen, is testosterone. Your body’s ability to produce testosterone reaches its peak when you are about eighteen. For the most part testosterone production stays close to that maximum throughout your twenties. Testosterone production begins to drop slowly as you hit your thirties and forties. When you are in your seventies and eighties, your testosterone level will likely be half of what it was when you were in your twenties, and you will certainly be feeling the difference!
DHEA is another important androgen related to vitality and peak performance. As your testosterone and DHEA levels start to decline, that is when you will begin to experience the symptoms of andropause. Unlike menopause, there is no specific age or age range that marks the onset of andropause. Symptoms for men are more gradual, occurring over time, as DHEA and testosterone levels drop. What you might see are changes in mood and attitude, increased fatigue, loss of energy, a decreased sex drive and an overall feeling of lowered vitality and physical abilities.
Andropause and Hormone Replacement Therapy
It may seem as if andropause is a new phenomenon. It is not, we have actually been aware of it since the 1940s. What is new in recent years is our improved ability to diagnose andropause and to treat it with hormone replacement therapies. Today many men are benefiting by replacing what aging takes away, through bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, or BHRT.
There are many myths and misconceptions about hormone replacement therapy for men. It often is confused with steroid abuse, or other dangerous or illegal performance enhancing drugs. Nothing could be further from the truth about BHRT for men.
Still, just as HRT is not right for all women going through menopause, testosterone replacement therapies may not be right for all men. There could be other reasons for your symptoms, which is another reason why you should only seek HRT treatment from a certified physician, who can perform the proper diagnostic tests, and prescribe the most effective treatments for you.
Why Choose Bioidentical Hormones?
Bioidentical hormones are an exact chemical and physical match for the hormones, such as testosterone and DHEA, normally manufactured by your glands. Bioidentical hormones are only derived from natural sources, and are more easily recognized, absorbed, and used by your body. Since they are virtually indistinguishable from the hormones produced by your body, they naturally have far fewer side effects than the synthetic hormones produced by pharmaceutical companies.
Also, since the drug companies that make these synthetic hormones have a vested interest in patenting them for profit, they often come up with strange chemical variants that make them seem even odder to your body.
The Right Hormone Therapy From the Right Doctor
Men are living longer and more active lives than ever before, but aging and the effects of male menopause, or andropause are very complex. There are those of us in the medical profession who have made a career of its study and treatment. Unfortunately, there are also many less-than-reputable “newbies” in the field who only wish to jump on the bandwagon and cash-in on the growing demand for testosterone therapy and hormone replacement treatments for men.
As a practitioner who has been using BHRT safely and effectively for decades, it heartens me to see how many of my colleagues are taking the effects of andropause more seriously, and understanding the benefits of testosterone replacement therapy.
But, I caution men who find themselves experiencing symptoms affecting their moods, physical stamina, sexual activity, or their ability to enjoy life – to only seek HRT from certified and skilled medical professionals. Contact us.