When people talking about problems associated with low testosterone levels, fertility problems is typically the top leading issue. But did you know that there are also other health conditions that may occur due to low level of this hormone? And the complications and effects that occur are dependent on when in life the situation occurs.
For instances, if it occurs in infants, there is a chance to cause poor /low development of sexual organs. In boys who close to the puberty, it may affect the development of their secondary sexual characteristics. And in adulthood – it is often associated with high risk of having erectile dysfunction (or other decreased sexual function problems), decreased muscle mass, and even osteoporosis (decreased density of bones).
Many studies have been studying the correlation between the low levels of this hormone and certain health conditions – though there is still no clearly answer! In fact, many men with certain health problems (such as hypertension (high blood pressure), metabolic syndrome, overweight (obesity), and diabetes) also have low testosterone.
Some recent studies (according to an article published on WebMD) suggest that the chance of developing low testosterone may be:
- 1.8 times higher in individuals with hypertension.
- 2.1 times higher in those with diabetes (particularly for type-2 diabetes).
- And 2.4 times higher in men with obesity.
Nevertheless, experts still cannot find the scientifically answer to explain the link of both – though they do believe that low level of this hormone may have contribution to cause those health conditions.
A research (involved about 4,000 men with the age of older than 70) found that the risk of having depression was highest for those with the lowest levels of testosterone.
How about with hypertension (high blood pressure)? The effects of testosterone on the levels of blood pressure are pretty complex. Experts believe that this hormone can act in multiple ways on the vessels of blood. In general, men without hypertension may be less likely to have low testosterone if compared with men with hypertension. Moreover on the other hand, too high level of testosterone also can increase the risk of having hypertension.
Another top leading issue associated with low levels of this hormone is ED – erectile dysfunction (it may be the most common symptom complained by men with low testosterone). As well we know, atherosclerosis is the major cause of ED. And many men with risk factors of atherosclerosis (such as obesity, metabolic syndrome, or diabetes) also often experience low testosterone levels!
This male hormone is produced in the male testicles. Below is a picture (image credit to Mayo Clinic) to describe some crucial functions of the male testosterone hormone:
The picture above explains that testosterone is crucial to maintain:
- The distribution of fat
- The production of red blood cells.
- The strength of muscles.
- The density of bone.
When it comes to the issue of fertility, testosterone is crucial for male’s sex drive and the production of sperm. Having lack of this hormone can put a man at greater chance of having poor production of sperm and other issues associated with fertility (such erectile dysfunction and poor sex drive).
Men who have less than 20 million sperm /ml of semen are more likely to have problems associated with fertility. A normal male’s ejaculation can produce about 100 million sperm on average, according to WHO “The World Health Organization”.
In fact, a waiting egg only needs a single sperm for conception. But why you need a lot of sperm for a single fertilization?
To create fertilization, sperms need to travel from the vagina to the tubes of fallopian (the location for the conception to occur). During this journey, there are only few sperms that can survive.
Moreover, the egg is also sealed by a thick layer and therefore not all sperms can penetrate and meet the egg. Many experts think that these not-easy steps of fertilization are purposed to filter and find the healthiest sperm for conception which then can create a healthiest baby.
These explanations suggest that low testosterone levels can lead to fewer amounts of sperms produced during ejaculation, which then can decrease the chance of having conception. Here are some helpful home remedies to improve the health and production of sperm:
- Keep the ambient temperature of your scrotum as comfortable as you can! Many studies have confirmed that higher temperature (heat) can slow the production of sperm. Therefore, it’s much better to avoid frequent hot tubs /hot baths. Use boxers instead of restrictive /tight pants and tight briefs.
- Drink alcohol in moderation – avoid drink it too much or avoid it if necessary when you have a plan for pregnancy with your partner!
- Keep close on a well-balanced diet!
- Maintain your ideal /healthy weight!
- Avoid cigarette smoking! It is not only bad for your sex drive, but also bad for the quality and quantity of your sperm.
- Stay away from unfriendly chemicals such as heavy metals and pesticides!
In adult men, the level of testosterone decrease as they age. It can drop for about 1 to 1.5 percent /year (according to an article published on Mayo Clinic), which typically will begin at the age of 40.
To measure the level of this hormone, a blood test is one of the most common choices. Generally, the range of normally male hormone testosterone levels is about between 300 and 1000 nano-grams /deciliter. But some experts also believe that the normal range should be about 300 to 1,200 ng/dL. Those with higher than 1,000-1,200 ng/dL are categorized into ‘too high’ and those with lower than 300 ng/dL are ‘too low’.
Having a gradually decline of testosterone levels as you age is something to be expected (perfectly normal). As you age, you will experience a lot of symptoms and signs associated with aging and some of them may be associated with the levels of testosterone that gradually decrease.
Though there is still no clearly answer to explain the correlation between the emotional changes and the levels of this hormone, but in fact many men with low testosterone levels also experience lack of self-confidence and lack of motivation. They are also more likely to have depression and irritability.