Signs and symptoms of low testosterone
What are the symptoms of low testosterone?
Common symptoms of low testosterone include:
- decreased libido (sex drive). Having less desire for sex
- sleep disturbance. Difficulty falling or staying asleep and poor quality of sleep
- tiredness and lack of energy that doesn’t improve with rest or sleep
- brain fog. Difficulty focusing and concentrating on tasks. You may be more distracted and forgetful than usual
- depression. Feeling sad, losing interest in doing the things you normally enjoy, mood swings, and irritability
Low testosterone, anxiety, and depression
Depression and anxiety are common symptoms in people with low testosterone, but it is not clear which condition causes the other. Depression becomes more common as we age, which is also when our testosterone levels naturally lower.
Depression, anxiety, and low mood may occur as a result of other low testosterone symptoms such as low sex drive, erectile dysfunction, weight gain, and poor-quality sleep. In men who have low testosterone levels studies, however, have shown an improvement in depression and anxiety symptoms following treatment with testosterone replacement therapy.
Symptoms of low testosterone in men
In addition to the symptoms listed above, men with low testosterone may experience:
- erectile dysfunction (ED). Difficulty getting or maintaining an erection and fewer spontaneous erections (erections that occur without sexual stimulation)
- hair loss
- decreased muscle mass. Muscles become smaller and weaker
- gynecomastia. Growth of breast tissue in men or boys
- increased body fat, especially around your waist. It may also be harder to lose weight
How does low testosterone affect male fertility?
Although low testosterone can make you want to have sex less often, and can be caused by conditions which can effect your fertility, sperm production is controlled by other hormones and the link between low testosterone and male infertility is unclear. Reduced fertility is a potential side effect of testosterone replacement therapy for as long as you are taking it, and you should be aware of this before starting treatment. If you have any questions or concerns about testosterone treatment and reduced fertility, speak to your GP.
Symptoms of low testosterone in women
Some common symptoms in women with low testosterone are:
- low sex drive and reduced sexual satisfaction
- depression and low mood
- tiredness, weakness, and low energy
What are the signs you may have low testosterone?
Some visible signs of low testosterone are:
- growth of breast tissue in men (gynecomastia)
- reduced body and facial hair
- fat around your middle
- smaller muscles
Is it dangerous to have low testosterone?
Low testosterone can cause your bones to become weaker and more brittle (osteoporosis) making them more likely to break. Low testosterone has also been linked to conditions like metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease.