(The surest and most effective way of getting testosterone into your body is via testosterone injections.)
Testosterone is the hormone in the body which is responsible for male characteristics in a man. It is needed for sexual development during puberty and is responsible for growth of hair on different body parts, for the deepening of the voice and also for developing muscle mass.
When the hormone is not present in sufficient quantity, it can lead to stunted development in youngsters. In older men, too, the hormone is of utmost importance. It keeps energy levels high and is vital for a good sex life, fertility and more. Unfortunately men tend to lose testosterone in small percentages every year after they have peaked. As a result men in their 40s, 50s, 60s and older may suffer significant sexual problems as they grow older, suffer from impotence, infertility and erectile dysfunction.
Apart from this, they may suffer from osteoporosis, loss of height and many other health problems. This is because testosterone levels are important for many other functions in the body.
If you have been diagnosed with low testosterone levels
Testosterone levels vary a great depending on age, physical fitness, illness, and the time of the day the blood is taken for testing and even ethnicity. That is why there is great variation in what is considered normal. The average normal ranges from 250 ng/dl to 850 ng/dl.
So it is important to discuss with your doctor what should be your normal range, depending on your physical parameters. And if your testosterone levels are indeed low or even on the lower side of normal, you should talk to your doctor about getting testosterone from outside sources. Often doctors are not sympathetic regarding sexual problems (especially if your levels are still in the normal range) or simply may not want to prescribe testosterone because of its many side effects and the constant monitoring that it requires.
Testosterone injections are available in different combinations and dosages, but the most popular and widely used are testosterone cypionate (Depo-Testosterone) and testosterone enanthate (Delatestryl). The injections are given intramuscularly and in a specified dosage. Usually the time between injections is about two to three weeks, but some people are not happy with this time frame as it results in peaks of testosterone levels with a gradual down trend causing a feeling of crashing.
If you feel that way, you will need to talk to your doctor about it and perhaps adjust the dosage so that you can take them more frequently. On doctor’s approval, you may even learn to self inject. The injections are quite painful as they are oil-based injections and have to be delivered very slowly.
Testosterone injections are the best way to take testosterone. The dose can be easily adjusted and the medicine enters the body directly so is more effective. The effects are also faster.
Possible side effects of testosterone
Not everyone experiences all the side effects and some people do not have any side effects at all. However, few people who are sensitive can experience a whole lot of side effects, some of them serious. It is very important that if you have an allergic reaction, hives, difficulty breathing, any swelling you should immediately rush to the emergency room of a hospital as anaphylaxis can be fatal.
Minor and major side effects include
- Frequent and problematic erections
- Man boobs
- Upset stomach
- Weight gain
- Hair loss
- Sleep disturbances
- Shrunken testicles
- Prostate problems
- High red blood cell count
- Congestive heart failure
If you have any of these side effects, the doctor may put you on other medicines to block the unpleasant effects of testosterone replacement therapy, particularly the increase in estrogen levels in the body. That is because all hormones have to be in a delicate balance for optimum functioning in the body.
The benefits of testosterone replacement therapy via testosterone injections
While there are certain risks involved with taking testosterone injections, there are many benefits as well. Your sex drive will improve and your erectile dysfunction become history. Even better, if you have osteoporosis and loss of bone, this will improve and various aches and pains disappear.
You will also have higher energy levels. And you will be able to build muscle mass faster and even lose weight – this when combined with regular exercise and a good diet. So you have to weigh the pros and cons of this treatment and come to a decision along with your health care provider to see if testosterone injections are beneficial to you.
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