When most people think of hormone replacement therapy (HRT), they think of women facing challenging symptoms during menopause. And that reputation is well earned, because HRT is a highly effective way to relieve night sweats, hot flashes, and other problems associated with a drastic decrease in estrogen.
But what about men? The male population was long overlooked when it came to HRT, but that’s changed. Today, awareness about men’s hormone imbalances is more prevalent than ever, and more and more men are talking to their doctors about how to get their life back.
At Life Point Medical, Dr. Timothy Beck and our experienced team help male patients throughout the Clayton, Georgia, area get a handle on their hormones for a multitude of reasons. Here are five of them.
As you age, your body naturally starts slowing down its production of testosterone, your main reproductive hormone. It’s also responsible for your sex drive and partially responsible for your ability to get and keep an erection.
Clearly, a decrease in this essential hormone, sometimes called low T, can cause issues in your sex life. If Dr. Beck finds that your testosterone levels are low, hormone replacement therapy can get you back on track in the bedroom.
But it’s important to have a full examination first, because low T isn’t the only condition that can lead to erectile dysfunction. If it’s atherosclerosis, diabetes, or some condition other than a hormone imbalance, HRT won’t help.
Studies have shown that there may be a connection between low testosterone and risk for heart attacks and stroke. Research-based on that phenomenon shows that normalizing men’s testosterone levels result in a significant reduction in the mortality rate associated with strokes and myocardial infarctions (heart attacks).
One of the classic signs of a hormone imbalance in men is low energy, and testosterone isn’t the only culprit. Your thyroid hormones can also affect your energy level. Feeling fatigued and sluggish leads to a lack of exercise and a tendency to overeat, which in turn, causes weight gain. Lack of sleep may be to blame for part of that low-down feeling as well, as low T is known to mess with sleep patterns.
Low testosterone exacerbates the cycle by contributing to your body’s propensity to store fat, so you end up in a vortex of weight gain and lethargy. HRT corrects the imbalances and restores your vigor.
Hormones contribute to the problem of weight gain in two ways. We already mentioned the effect it has on your energy level, but hormones have a direct impact on your body composition as well.
A healthy supply of testosterone helps build strong, lean muscle mass, fuels your metabolism, keeps your bones dense, and promotes insulin sensitivity. A decrease in testosterone reverses these benefits, but HRT turns the tables and helps you keep your physique.
When your hormones are out of whack, your entire system tends to follow suit. For instance, if your testosterone level is too low in relation to your estrogen level (yes, men have a little bit of estrogen, too), you may notice some body changes that you typically think of as female, like enlarged breasts. This condition, called gynecomastia, happens to about a quarter of the male population and can be treated with HRT (as long as hormone imbalance is, indeed, the cause).
HRT can also help with hormone-related hair loss, so if you’ve noticed some thinning, come get your hormones checked.
We’ve been talking a lot about HRT and how men can benefit, but there’s more you know about the type we offer here at Life Point Medical.
Dr. Beck exclusively uses BioTe® hormone replacement therapy. These are bioidentical hormones, which mean they’re an exact match for your own hormones. They are derived from plant-based sources, then compounded in a lab to mirror exactly what your body produces and replace it seamlessly.
To avoid any sudden spikes or drops that are possible with oral HRT, Dr. Beck inserts a tiny pellet under your skin that gradually releases doses of BioTe over time. The result is a smooth transition back into balance and an amped-up ability to battle the signs of aging and the symptoms of hormone imbalance.
To find out more about BioTe hormone replacement therapy or to get started, give us a call at 706-534-6566 or use our online tool to request an appointment whenever you’re ready. We can’t wait to talk with you about all the benefits of bioidentical hormone replacement therapy.