Men go through a period of hormone decline around middle age just as women do. Testosterone, which is the primary male sex hormone, starts decreasing in production in the early 30s. This hormone allows men to develop typical masculine characteristics such as a deep voice, facial hair and well-defined muscles. It also produces sperm and prompts the penis and testes to develop fully.
As testosterone continues to decline in the 30s and 40s, men may develop a condition called andropause. Some people also refer to it as male menopause or hypogonadism. Men may develop a number of physical and emotional symptoms due to andropause, such as low libido, lack of ambition, irritability, depression, muscle atrophy, weight gain and insomnia.
Because the body’s hormones are interdependent on each other, the decline in testosterone causes other hormones to become unbalances as well. When men seek hormone replacement therapy (HRT), doctors are primarily concerned with balancing testosterone, cortisol, DHEA, and melatonin.
If you believe you are developing symptoms related to Andropause or Low Testosterone, read on to learn more and contact an Atlanta andropause doctor today for male hormone replacement with bioidentical hormone replacement therapy.
Since hormone decline causes such widespread symptoms, it’s important to understand the role of individual hormones. Men who are experiencing imbalances of any of the following hormones can find fast symptom relief and improved quality of life with male hormone replacement.
Testosterone – As mentioned above, testosterone is the primary male sex hormone manufactured by the testes. When testosterone starts to decline during andropause, the adrenal glands attempt to take over its production. However, several factors may inhibit the adrenal glands from doing their job. These include stress, poor nutrition, illness, depression, and psychological trauma. Because the male body requires testosterone to function properly, a lack of it may cause all of the symptoms described above as well as increase the risk of high blood pressure and cholesterol.
Cortisol – The adrenal glands make and release cortisol to help men deal with stress. Andropause symptoms may worsen when there is too much cortisol in relation to testosterone. When the imbalance isn’t treated, men can experience a weakened immune system, inflammation, allergy symptoms, hypothyroidism, digestive disorders, low blood sugar, low blood pressure, slow healing from wounds and a low sex drive.
DHEA – The adrenal glands produce DHEA, which in turn helps to produce testosterone. The hormone is most prevalent when men are in their 20s, but the typical man only has one-quarter of the DHEA he once had by age 70. In addition to aging, DHEA can decline due to smoking, stress and prolonged illness. An imbalance of this hormone can lead to fatigue, joint pain, loss of muscle mass, weight gain, irritability, decreased immunity and inability to deal with stress.
Melatonin – Having balanced levels of melatonin is essential for developing a normal sleep cycle. When the body produces too little melatonin, it also affects the functioning of human growth hormone and testosterone. The most common problems caused by an imbalance of melatonin include insomnia, sleep apnea, anxiety, depression and accelerated aging.
Have more questions or want to find out if male hormone replacement therapy with bioidentical hormone replacement therapy may be right for you? Contact a local male hormone specialist near you to schedule your consultation.