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Testosterone is a male sex hormone that is responsible for all the characteristics that we associate with a male. A hormone is a chemical that starts some event or change in the human body. While testosterone is associated with men, women also produce this hormone at a trace amount.
This Hormone is a type of Androgen that is produced by the Testicles, it is produced in the Leydig Cells. There are many reasons why testosterone is produced. The hormone helps in the following tasks: maintaining sex drive in men, improving bone mass, better distribution of fat, growth in muscle size and strength, production of red blood cells etc. If you have enough testosterone, then you will be a better male but an absence of testosterone can cause infertility as testosterone helps you to develop the sperm.
It is known as a sex hormone but it is also a workout supplement used by bodybuilders and sports athletes. Testosterone increases muscle strength and even impact bone density and fat reduction. Since hormones are produced by glands, testosterone is produced by Pituitary gland and is carried to different places in the body through blood vessels.
What does lack or excess of testosterone cause?
Imbalance in testosterone level is a major problem. It can cause different diseases, effects and impact the overall health of a person.
In men, low testosterone generally causes things such as Hypogonadism which is a disease that has symptoms such as a reduction in libido and sex drive, erectile dysfunction. swollen breasts. It even causes low sperm count which can lead to infertility.
How to know if you have low testosterone?
The symptoms like loss of body hair, muscle mass and increased body fat are the indicators that you might have low testosterone. Depression and mental health issues, reduced energy and decrease in the size of testes are some other indications that you need to look after your testosterone levels.
What causes low testosterone in men?
The causes of low testosterone are:
- An Injury to or an Infection of the testes
- Medicines like opioids
- Problems in the pituitary gland
- Diseases such as type two diabetes, obesity and HIV/AIDS
- Genetic disorders
As far as the high level of testosterone goes, there is minimal effect on men. They might go through puberty sooner but other than that there is no real effect. In women, however, low testosterone level can cause many effects and impact their sexual health in a negative way.
Testosterone and Age
Age and Testosterone has a very shaky relationship, to be honest. Testosterone production decreases with age and a disease called late-onset hypogonadism is found in old men. This is pretty normal, however. Effects of this disease is, as you guessed, low T levels and other problems associated with low T levels. Generally, after the age of 40, you can see this disease taking form. About 40% of men can face this after they have reached 40 while some face it much earlier.
The symptoms are what you’d expect an old person to have. These include:
- Low Sexual health, no libido and cannot maintain an erection
- Depression and Reduced cognition
- Fatigue, Anger and Weakness
- Abdominal fat
- Decreased body hair and change in skin colour
- A decrease in bone mass and density
In addition, late-onset hypogonadism is also linked with cardio diseases (heart attacks and cholesterol). The degree of testosterone decrement, however, varies from person to person. A large number of men, however, experience it much faster these days.