The signs and symptoms aren’t always easy to spot. Our guide will help.
If you’re worried about low testosterone but unsure of the symptoms, you’ve come to the right place. But let’s clear up a misconception first – a gradual decline in testosterone as we age is perfectly natural. Levels generally peak around the age of 18-20, then, from age 30, they’ll drop by about 1% a year.
However, for a small percentage of men, this drop can be sharper, and the body might stop producing enough testosterone to keep you healthy and energized. Perhaps the most famous example of this is Robbie Williams: after seeking professional help for depression in his thirties, tests revealed he had the hormone levels expected of a man in his eighties.
It’s an easy shift to miss. After all, the symptoms of low testosterone can be very similar to those associated with ageing in general. But there are a few signs that something’s amiss.
Do You Feel Lethargic?
Look, we’re all tired. That’s nothing out of the ordinary. But if you still feel drained of all energy and enthusiasm, even after a restful weekend at home or a good night’s sleep, then it’s worth investigating the underlying causes.
Has Your Body Shape Changed?
A dadbod is rarely indicative of a medical issue. But it could be a factor if you’re carrying a notable amount of excess fat around your middle or chest when you’ve never been prone to it before and haven’t changed your diet or exercise routine.
Do You Have Erectile Problems?
Precipitously low-T will prevent you from getting it up – or from wanting sex – but you should explore psychological factors, too. Oh, and if you don’t always want sex on a Friday night after a tough week of work, that’s normal. If any of the above sounds a little too familiar, book in with your GP.
What Counts as Low Testosterone?
If you’re tempted to try a home test, take note: your T-levels fluctuate throughout the week (and even within a single day), so you need to test yourself at least twice.
<150 NG/DL: This is very low for an adult man. Speak to your GP and get a formal test.
150-263 NG/DL: Below optimal, though anything above 215 isn’t unusual if you’re over 50.
264-916 NG/DL: The normal range for men under 40. If you’re close to 300 and feel fine, you’re no less healthy than a guy who’s at 700.