August 04, 2022
When Men Should Worry About Low Testosterone Levels
It’s estimated that around 40% of men age 45 or older have low testosterone. In response, home tests for testosterone levels have skyrocketed, as have supplements and treatments to boost the production of the hormone.
When men are aging and feeling sluggish, more tired than usual, and noticing a decrease in sex drive, low testosterone is often to blame, but are tests and treatments necessary?
Centers Health Care looks at when “low T” is a problem or when natural solutions are likely a better way to improve symptoms.
Is a Testosterone Test Necessary?
At-home testosterone tests have become huge business since the COVID-19 pandemic, as testing company Everlywell said that it saw test sales triple from 2020 to 2021.
While low testosterone could be to blame for that overall sluggish feeling, experts warn against going the self-diagnosis route and taking an at-home test without seeing a doctor first.
One reason is that testosterone levels can fluctuate from day to day or even in different parts of the same day.
Are There Downsides to Testosterone Therapy?
Yes—if a doctor doesn’t consider your levels to be low enough to require a testosterone boost, taking more to raise your levels anyway can lead to problems.
First, it may not cause any noticeable changes. It can also bring on a hormone imbalance that may require more medication.
Testosterone supplements can also, over time, cause the body to stop producing the hormone naturally. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration also put out a warning in 2015 that testosterone could increase the risk of cardiovascular events like a heart attack or stroke.
Bottom Line: Check With Your Doctor
Experts say if you’re concerned, talk to your primary care physician or a urologist. Things like having less energy and a low libido can be caused by poor diet, lack of exercise, not getting enough sleep, being clinically depressed, and many other factors. Your doctor will be able to work with you to see what the causes of the issue might be and work to solve them naturally.