Are you noticing your muscles aren’t as obvious as they once were? Testosterone levels can impact your appearance, sexual development, and more.
It happens more often than you might think. In fact, 2 out of 10 men older than 60 have low testosterone. For men in their 70s and 80s, the probability increases to 3 out of 10.
By understanding the signs and symptoms of low testosterone, you can visit a doctor to get diagnosed as soon as possible.
Early diagnosis can help minimize your low testosterone symptoms. Keep reading to learn more about the effects of low testosterone!
1. Hair Loss
One of the low testosterone symptoms many people recognize first is hair loss. It’s often one of the first things a doctor will look for when checking for low testosterone.
You might notice you’ve lost hair on your face or your body.
Testosterone helps you maintain your facial and body hair. If that hair suddenly thins or disappears, consider visiting a doctor. While blading is a natural part of aging, you’ll likely notice hair loss in other areas as well.
Testosterone is sometimes referred to as the “male” hormone. It’s responsible for many physical aspects of the body in addition to hair growth.
2. Low Sex Drive and Erectile Dysfunction
Testosterone plays a part in creating a healthy sex drive in both men and women.
If you notice your libido is starting to decrease, it’s possibly an effect of low testosterone. However, other factors can impact your libido, including:
- Lack of sleep
- A traumatic event
First, make sure to review this list of signs and symptoms of low testosterone. Determine if you’re experiencing more than this single symptom. If so, consider visiting a doctor.
However, it’s important to note that having one or two of these low testosterone symptoms doesn’t necessarily mean you have low testosterone. Many of these symptoms can occur if you have other health issues. If you notice several of these symptoms at the same time, it’s not a bad idea to ask your doctor to test you for low testosterone.
For example, erectile dysfunction is also caused by:
- Thyroid problems
- High blood pressure
- High cholesterol
- Alcohol use
They can see if your low testosterone level is causing your decreased libido, or if another concern is to blame.
For example, erectile dysfunction also commonly occurs along with low sex drive. If your sex drive is already low, you might find it difficult to maintain an erection. However, many erectile dysfunction issues are caused by other health problems.
Getting tested for low testosterone can help you determine the root cause.
3. Hot Flashes
Hot flashes usually only occur for men who have undergone chemotherapy. After chemotherapy treatment, it’s possible the patient will have almost no testosterone left in the body. Doctors aren’t sure why this happens.
If you experience hot flashes, visit your doctor and let them know what you’re experiencing.
To diagnose low testosterone, your doctor will start by running a blood test. They’ll look to determine if your testosterone level is within the expected range. During your appointment, your doctor will also complete a physical exam.
The physical exam will include looking at your muscle growth, hair growth, and the size and appearance of your testicles.
Testosterone is one of the main hormones necessary to create sperm. If you experience these signs and symptoms of low testosterone, it’s possible you’ll produce low sperm levels as well.
For some men, low testosterone makes it impossible for them to produce sperm as well.
If you and your partner are experiencing trouble conceiving, consider visiting a doctor. They can run a blood test to check your testosterone levels.
Testosterone also plays a part in your bone health.
When your testosterone levels are in the right range, a small amount is transformed into estrogen. This estrogen is used to protect your bones. Low testosterone levels, on the other hand, can lead to weak bones that are more likely to break.
Low testosterone levels can cause low bone mineral density and osteoporosis.
Osteoporosis is the thinning of bone mass. While this condition is often associated with women, men with low testosterone can also experience bone loss.
These signs and symptoms of low testosterone are most concerning for men over 65. However, any man should speak with a doctor if he experiences these symptoms.
For treatment, your doctor might suggest a:
- Nasal gel
- Cheek disc
You can find out more about potential treatment options to explore your options.
6. Low Muscle Mass
Testosterone is necessary for muscle growth. If you have low testosterone levels, your existing muscles will start to shrink. This is one of the first symptoms your doctor will explore if you’re concerned about low testosterone.
According to this study, testosterone affects muscle mass as well. However, it doesn’t necessarily affect strength or function.
Meanwhile, you might also notice signs of increased body fat. Some men develop gynecomastia, or enlarged breast tissue. This effect sometimes occurs due to an imbalance of testosterone and estrogen in the patient.
7. Mood Swings and Fatigue
It’s also possible for men with low testosterone levels to experience emotional flares and mood swings. A healthy level of testosterone is needed to keep your mood level. However, mood swings are also common if you have other health issues.
If you experience sudden mood changes, make sure to let your doctor know.
Healthy testosterone levels can also help you feel energized. Many men with low testosterone levels experience fatigue and difficulty concentrating. You might notice you feel tired and unfocused, despite how much sleep you get.
This fatigue can last for weeks at a time. If you can’t find an explanation for your low activity level or stress, speak with your doctor.
Keep an Eye Out for These Signs and Symptoms of Low Testosterone
Low testosterone is common as you grow older. Make sure to keep an eye out for these seven signs and symptoms of low testosterone. Your doctor can have you tested to confirm the diagnosis.
Have other health concerns? Explore the Health & Fitness section of the blog today for more helpful guides.