Men aren’t often compared to flowers, but sometimes we feel . . . withered. Even the strongest stem can sometimes, albeit stubbornly, limp downwards.
Erectile Dysfunction is no longer shameful and a visit to an Urologist can most likely enable you to once again stand your ground. But what if you completely lost your sex drive?
This is a man’s biggest fear – it’s worse than erectile dysfunction. Your wife eventually blames you and feels like she is no longer attractive to you, she even suspects that “someone else” is draining your libido and energy. No wonder you’ve lately been feeling like a sunflower in a Van Gogh painting.
Maybe you are clinically depressed as a result of stress at work. Anti-depressants is sometimes needed, but first ask your house doctor to have your testosterone levels tested. Decreased hormone levels in men are on the rise in terms of diagnosis: We get much older than years ago and are no longer as wary to discuss sensitive topics such as a low libido with a doctor. To have your blood tested for testosterone levels is easy.
Testosterone – the male hormone
It steadily declines after the age of 30. It also explains why the thick hair that you once pressed flat against your head in grade nine with a handful of gel to try and get Sarie Visser in grade eight’s attention, is no longer as full and glossy and why your stomach muscles are no longer as firm.
A dramatic decline in your testosterone levels can’t however, only be blamed on age. Low testosterone levels are associated with a “boepie” (bigger belly), type 2 diabetes, liver or kidney diseases, HIV/Aids, chronic addiction to Mills and Boon books, injuries to the testicles, infection, Testicular Cancer, genetic factors and certain types of medicine. It’s not always clear whether these diseases can cause testosterone levels to decline or is in fact the result of decreased testosterone.
Low testosterone levels are also associated with cognitive disruptions such as depression, and a decrease in concentration and memory. And with several Cancer types.
Testosterone has a big influence on the male brain (this is a much more complicated and versatile organ contrary to what some women believe) and testosterone supplements can even help you to remember your mother-in-law’s birthday. Lowered testosterone can increase your chances of developing Alzheimer.
The symptoms of low testosterone levels is similar to that of clinical depression, high blood pressure and the absolute favourite in middle-aged, braai meat eating men: Coronary Heart Disease. Therefore, low testosterone levels need to be confirmed by a blood test.
It sometimes happens that someone’s testosterone level is below what is considered acceptable, even though the patient has no obvious symptoms. Hormone supplements are suggested as testosterone levels that are too low is associated to a higher risk of heart attacks and strokes, as well as declining bone density, which can cause bone breaks.
If your house doctor tries to convince you that low testosterone levels is harmless when there are no obvious symptoms, it is advisable to go for a second opinion at another specialist.
Testosterone levels that are too low often causes a couple to struggle falling pregnant.
If your testosterone levels are only slightly lowered, you can try “natural” treatments, such as a special diet and enough sleep. (Whether your wife will believe you when you tell her that it’s important for your health to have sex twice at night and then afterwards just turn over and fall asleep, is doubtful).
Testosterone is a man’s best friend. It puts the tiger in your tank. It ensures fertility, virility and a healthy libido. It also ensures the growth of chest hair and keeps your bones and muscles strong and healthy. If there are any physical degrees of manliness, it will be determined by your testosterone levels and not the size of your car or the amount of beer that you can drink in one session.