Following are common myths about andropause:
Myth: Andropause is sometimes called "male menopause" because men go through a process similar to that of women as they get older.
Fact: Many experts prefer the term "andropause" to "male menopause" precisely because men and women go through very different hormone changes as they age. While women's reproductive hormones plunge dramatically over a relatively short time as they stop ovulating, men's testosterone begins to decline gradually around age 30. That's why men's symptoms, such as mood changes, decreased energy, and lower libido, as well as other shifts in sexual function, may not be recognized for years.
Myth: All older men should be on hormone replacement therapy.
Fact: Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) for older men with low testosterone levels is controversial. It may relieve symptoms for some men, but may not help many others. Also, testosterone replacement may be risky: it may raise your risk of prostate cancer or other health conditions. Discuss HRT and other options with your doctor if you have signs of andropause. Remember: Positive lifestyle changes like healthy eating, reducing your stress, and engaging in regular physical activity can improve your health and well-being as you get older. Benefits of a healthier lifestyle include stronger muscles and bones, more energy, less depression, better sleep, and improved concentration.
Myth: Low testosterone levels are normal as you get older, so there's no reason to see the doctor if you have symptoms.
Fact: Aging isn't the only reason why men's testosterone levels drop. Health conditions, such as obstructive sleep apnea -- a serious sleep disorder that could cause you to stop breathing -- may also be the cause. It's important to check with your doctor if you have any signs of decreased hormone levels to make sure your health problems are identified and treated. Low testosterone has also been linked to obesity, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome, conditions that require medical treatment and lifestyle changes.
Myth: If you don't have any symptoms, your testosterone levels are probably normal.
Fact: Many men whose testosterone levels are lower than normal have no symptoms. Others may have signs that they don't mentally connect to andropause, such as irritability, trouble concentrating or sleeping, and physical changes like more body fat and less muscle bulk and strength.
Following are common myths about andropause: Myth: Andropause is
sometimes called "male menopause" because men go through a process
similar to that of women as they get older. Fact: Many experts
prefer the term "andropause" to "male... More