When it comes to the testosterone debate, to “T” or not to “T” – That is the question.
For many years, there was an ongoing debate among experts on whether testosterone therapy is the ultimate solution to every man’s libido problem. Getting and keeping erections is also among the most common problems faced by millions of men around the world. While there are natural methods to give your testosterone a boost, some guys are willing to go through expensive therapies and testosterone treatment options just to get a glimpse of the sexual nirvana inside the bedroom.
Here’s the problem: testosterone therapy is not a one-size fits all kind of treatment. Yes, it helps many men, but not in all situations. There are cases when testosterone therapy could even do more harm than good in your body. This is also the reason why experts wary in recommending this type of treatment.
Before you pay for pills and patches, here are nine reasons why you should be careful in getting this type of treatment.
Testosterone Therapy in a Nutshell
Fact: testosterone is an essential hormone. It helps maintain bone density, sperm production, sex drive, muscle strength and mass, fat distribution, and red blood cell production; among many other bodily functions.
As you age, your testosterone levels decline by one percent every year, which is a normal process. Aside from physical changes, you may experience changes in your sleeping patterns and sexual function.
Decreased self-confidence and motivation, depression, and stress are also some of the emotional changes you will experience at this point in your life.
There are various ways you can enjoy testosterone therapy. You can start with testosterone patches or gels, which offer steady and longer doses of T. Implantable pellets are another option and could last for up to four months. You can also try topical solutions or injection, which is given in large doses twice a month.
Is Testosterone Always the Answer?
This is where testosterone replacement therapy or TRT comes in. If you have abnormally low testosterone, TRT could restore the right amount of testosterone your body needs and eventually get your normal groove back. This could also be your instant solution to your tired sex life.
Unfortunately, not all men will benefit from this type of treatment. In fact, there are cases wherein testosterone replacement therapy is not always the answer.
Are you thinking of getting testosterone replacement therapy? Before you do, here are reasons why you need to think things through.
1. Erectile Dysfunction Has Various Causes
One of the changes associated with lot testosterone is the changes in your man down south. All of a sudden, the once proud and up and about soldier can’t even get it up.
However, testosterone therapy is not always the best solution. Keep in mind that an erection relies heavily on blood flow. Blockages and anything that could affect or limit proper blood flow could make it difficult for you to get it up or even keep it in an erect state. This explains why conditions such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and hardening of the arteries means issues down south.
However, there are other reasons why you can’t get it up. This is why doctors will require you to go through series of tests to determine the cause of erectile dysfunction.
2. There Are Risks Involved
All good things come with a price, including testosterone replacement therapy. TRT has its shining moments and helps men in reversing the effects of hypogonadism; however, testosterone therapy comes with risks and side effects too. This includes:
Low Sperm Count
Increased Risk of Heart Attack or Stroke
Increased risk of deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
With DVT, there is a risk that a blood clot could break loose and travel through the bloodstream, which could block blood flow in your lungs. This is known as pulmonary embolism.
In other words, testosterone therapy is not all good. This is why it is important to discuss this form of treatment with your doctor to minimize the risk and prevent health problems in the future.
3. The Results Don’t Last Forever
Sorry to break it to you, guys, but testosterone therapy is not for lifetime.
You already know that testosterone replacement therapy comes in variety of forms – pills, patches, gels, implantable pellets and injections. And, each form of TRT has its own strengths and weaknesses.
If you want something that could last longer and offer a steady dose of testosterone, then testosterone patches are your best bet. The issue with this option is that it could cause discomfort and irritation on your skin. If you want something to last longer sans the discomfort, you can try implantable pellets.
However, if you are not comfortable with something attached to your skin, you can try topical formulations. It provides a steady dose of testosterone, although this means applying the formula every two to six hours. You also need to take note when was the last time you applied the formulation for better consistency.
If you want something less hassle, you can try the testosterone injection. Just make sure to check the doses since too much of this could lessen the effects.
4. It Won’t Work If You Have Sleeping Problems
How many hours of sleep are you getting every night? If you are not getting at least six to eight hours of sleep every night, then it could spell problems because your body produces hormones like testosterone while you sleep.
In addition, low T bring sleep disturbances. You might have testosterone problems, which explains why you keep on tossing and turning at night.
However, testosterone therapy may not be the solution for your sleep issues. It turns out that sleep apnea, especially the untreated kind, could get worse when you go for this type of treatment. Sleep apnea is a common sleeping disorder, which causes shallow breaths or short pauses while you sleep. This also comes with loud snoring.
If you experience interrupted breathing while sleeping, make sure to have a sleep study done to determine if you have sleep apnea. Your doctor might recommend you to use continuous positive airway pressure, or CPAP to help you get enough sleep. If this doesn’t work, then continue to seek the right treatment plan for your specific issues. Your doctor can help you with that, and monitor your progress, adjusting your treatment as you go.
5. Your Red Blood Cells Matter
One of the side effects of having testosterone therapy is the increased risk of blood clots. If you happen to have polycythemia, you need to stay away from this treatment option as much as possible.
Polycythemia is a type of condition wherein your body has too many red blood cells. This could be problematic for a number of reasons. Apparently, taking testosterone replacement therapy could stimulate the production of more red blood cells, which is not what your body needs. It makes your blood thicker, more prone to blood clots, and increases your risk of stroke or heart attack.
That’s not all. Polycythemia can also be a side effect of TRT. If you have this condition, then don’t consider this kind of treatment option unless your doctor says it’s okay. Again, you need to work with your doctor to determine the best solution for you.
6. TRTIs Not A Weight Loss Solution
Admit it. You also care about your weight, as you most certainly should. It may not be as obsessive compared to women, but you want to keep your weight gain at bay and still fit in your favorite clothes.
According to studies, men who weigh 30 to 40 pounds more than their ideal weight often have low testosterone. However, low T is not the reason why you are losing muscle mass in exchange for that stubborn belly fat.
Consequently, testosterone replacement therapy is not the solution to your belly problems.
There are various ways to help you lose weight and TRT is not one of them. Start by exercising regularly, and incorporating both cardio and strength training exercises in your routine. Go for healthy, well-balanced meals and choose your foods wisely. Stay away from too much sugar, salt, and anything processed.
You don’t need testosterone therapy to lose weight. It starts within yourself.
7. Remember to Protect Your Prostate
Fact: if you are not too careful, testosterone therapy could do more harm than good to your body. If you are concerned with your prostate, you might need to re-consider and think about going through TRT.
Testosterone therapy does not cause prostate cancer. However, it could aggravate your condition and make prostate cancer grow in case you have prostate cancer, or severe urinary tract symptoms due to enlarged prostate. In other words, it is the same as adding flame to the fire. Your condition could get worse if you insist on going through this treatment.
The same goes with benign prostate disease. According to the guidelines from the Endocrine Society, testosterone could make your prostate grow, even if there is no prostate cancer yet, but when your doctor has found a lump on your prostate gland during a rectal exam.
What if you get treatment and are able to get rid of the cancer? Still, this does not make you an automatic candidate. You may be able to take testosterone, but you still need a clearance from your doctor. This is to make sure that there won’t be any complications in the future. It can minimize the risks associated with this kind of treatment option.
8. TRTIs Not a Substitute for a Healthy Lifestyle
Are you always feeling tired and exhausted? Have you noticed changes in your physical appearance such as a rapid loss of muscle mass and a quick rise in weight gain? Low testosterone could be the cause.
There is no doubt that testosterone plays an important role in your body. When there is not enough supply, you will experience physical, emotional, and mental changes, which are not good. This is why you need to ensure that your T levels are in their best state for better functioning.
However, a lack of T doesn’t mean that testosterone therapy could do the trick. Do not confuse testosterone treatments as the ultimate health booster. While it helps, don’t treat this option as an alternative to boost your health. There are various natural ways to improve your testosterone levels. Explore those options and don’t rely on TRT unless it is absolutely necessary and the last option for you to try.
9. You May Not Need TRT
At the end of the day, you simply may not even need testosterone therapy. The effects of low testosterone does not follow that TRT is the ultimate solution. In fact, there must be sufficient tests to prove that you will benefit from this kind of treatment.
Keep in mind that experts and medical professionals designed testosterone therapy for those whose bodies do not produce enough testosterone.
Low testosterone due to other factors such as stress and aging does not make you an immediate candidate for this treatment option. Loss of muscle mass, decrease in sex drive, and low energy both in and out of the bedroom doesn’t also mean you can go for this treatment.
Testosterone begins to drop as soon as you hit the 3-0 mark. Since then, your T levels drop gradually until your body is unable to produce big batches of this hormone. Still, this doesn’t make testosterone therapy as your ultimate solution.
It is still best to consult your doctor to check the symptoms. At the same time, they could recommend appropriate treatment options, instead you having to pay for expensive injections, pills or testosterone patches.
Should You Choose Testosterone Therapy?
Given these reasons, TRT should depend on your particular needs. Your doctor should be the one to assess whether this option is the best solution according to your personal needs and issues. Before you buy those pricey testosterone patches or gels, it is important to discuss this option with your doctor. You need to go through series of tests to determine the need for such treatment.
Consequently, treating low T due to the normal aging process is not always necessary using TRT. If you are looking for ways to give your T levels a boost, you can prompt your body to make more by opting for lifestyle changes, such as getting more exercise, eating a healthy, well-balanced diet, getting enough sleep, and doing something about too much stress.
When all else fails, then your doctor will evaluate if you are fit for testosterone therapy. In the meantime, stick to simple, natural but effective methods to give your T levels a boost.