If you are an older man who is suffering the natural effects of lower testosterone levels, then you may be considering hormone replacement therapy. There are some very real benefits associated with taking testosterone supplements as you age, but there are also a few downfalls that should not be ignored. Weigh both sides, as presented below, and make the best decision for your own health.
Benefits of Testosterone Replacement for Older Men
One key benefit of testosterone replacement therapy is increased or sustained muscle mass. Many men have trouble keeping muscle mass on as they age, and this is mostly due to a decrease in testosterone levels. Replacing testosterone may allow you to get more benefits from working out, and it may make it easier for you to continue working out and staying active.
Testosterone replacement can also help keep your libido high. Although low testosterone levels are not the only cause of erectile dysfunction, they can be a contributing factor. Improved libido can help improve your self-confidence and boost your mood, and it may even help ward off mental health ailments like depression and anxiety.
Testosterone replacement can also help prevent or slow down balding as you age. It can also help maintain your bone density, which in turn can reduce your risk of bone fractures as you age.
Drawbacks of Testosterone Replacement for Older Men
One of the risks of taking testosterone as an older man is that of sleep apnea. If you already have sleep apnea or have suffered with it in the past, taking testosterone may make it worse, which may mean you need to use CPAP machine or wear a specialized mouth guard at night.
Another risk of testosterone replacement is that of acne. This risk can be reduced, somewhat, by keeping your dose low — but if you have always been prone to acne in the past, testosterone replacement therapy may cause you to have worsening breakouts. Some of these cases may be able to be managed with products containing salicylic acid and other ingredients, but other cases show little response to treatment since the acne is being caused by hormone levels.
If you are an older man wondering whether testosterone replacement is right for you, then reach out to your doctor. They can help you weigh these pros and cons to decide the best approach for you. Testosterone is incredibly helpful for many people, but it's still not for everyone.