Even if you don’t know that testosterone is a male sex hormone, you probably associate it with men. Not just the average man, but one pumped up and macho. You may think of bodybuilders pounding away at the gym. High testosterone levels for some is synonymous with excessive strength and aggression.
Yet what people may not realize is that testosterone supports numerous bodily functions, including regulation of bone and muscle mass as well as fat storage and metabolism. If you have high testosterone, it can cause health problems.
The symptoms of high testosterone vary from person to person. The brain controls the amount of testosterone in men and sends signals to the pituitary gland, which in turn, motions to the testes to generate testosterone. If at any time, this "loop" between the brain, pituitary gland, and testes results in too much testosterone, one or more of the following signs may occur.
Abnormal testosterone levels can result in poor sexual health. Men may have issues with erectile dysfunction (getting and maintaining an erection). Other sexual concerns may be low desire and sperm count, decreasing fertility.
One sign of excess testosterone is lots of body hair. For balding men, this may seem like not a positive side effect, but it usually doesn't fill in your bald spot but slightly increases the amount of hair on your legs, chest, and back.
It's normal for teenagers to suffer from mild to significant acne outbreaks, but not grown men. High testosterone may cause intense acne breakouts.
Testosterone helps regulate mood, and high levels may cause varying emotions. Typically, abnormal amounts of testosterone make men more irritable and aggressive. It may also induce feelings of anxiety and depression. Balancing levels is essential for mental health.
High testosterone can produce extreme blood pressure changes. Men may become hypertensive (high blood pressure) or hypotensive (low blood pressure). If this happens, he may experience dizziness, fatigue, or nausea, amongst other symptoms.
The signs mentioned above aren’t the only possible symptoms of high testosterone. Men may have one or more of the following:
If you’re experiencing any of the above symptoms, speak to your healthcare provider for guidance.
Treating high testosterone levels can often be achieved by eating a balanced diet and regular exercise. The ultimate goal is to eliminate any source that may cause excess testosterone. If you're undergoing testosterone replacement therapy, you may need to stop or lower the supplement dose.
Living with high testosterone isn’t common, but when it happens, serious health concerns can develop. There’s no reason to suffer in silence. The first step may be to pack in nutrient-dense foods and avoid processed ones. Or exercise regularly to optimize your testosterone levels. If nothing works, speak to your doctor about the next step.
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