There is a time in life for many men when a lot changes. The body gradually refuses to obey and men experience appetite disorders, mood swings, problems with sleep etc. If these happen, we are dealing with andropause – it is the male equivalent of what is known as menopause in women.
What is andropause?
Andropause, which is also known as viropause, male climacteric, or male menopause, is a gradual process that takes many years to happen. It doesn’t afflict every man, however, the number of men affected by this condition increases with their age.
It usually starts at the age of 40–55, and its course is different depending on many factors. It is connected with androgens deficiency, especially with the reduction of testosterone production, which is responsible for many metabolic processes in a man’s body. A man is not given a clear signal that he is starting to experience andropause. There is no clear determinant showing that it has started, so many men ignore their worsened general feeling and many disorders common for this phase.
The most common andropause symptoms:
- loss of muscle mass/increase of body fat (especially in the abdomen)
- general organism weakness
- lowered self-esteem and enthusiasm
- increased irritability
- pain disorders
- problems with memory and concentration
- increased perspiration
- arterial hypertension
- hair loss
- increased sensitivity to cold
- prostate problems
- low sex drive.
Whether these andropause symptoms will occur, and whether a given man will experience them or not is determined by many factors. Genetic predisposition is believed to be the main factor, however, one’s lifestyle, diet, and physical activity also play a significant role.
When diagnosing andropause many factors are taken into account. These are mostly the biological and psycho-physical conditions, as well as the hormonal balance. The initial diagnosis is carried out basing on the Morley questionnaire (also known as the „ADAM” questionnaire – Androgen Deficiency in the Aging Male) – andropause is suspected when the answer to three or more questions is positive.
As far as menopause in women means the loss of reproductive functions, andropause causes only their impairment. All of the remaining symptoms may significantly lower the quality of one’s life. This is why it is worth seeing a doctor, who will carry out the diagnostics and help to find an adequate treatment, which can help successfully lessen the symptoms of ageing.
How can you ease yourself?
- Remember that it is mainly up to you what this phase of your life will look like. Andropause is a temporary phase and there are ways to make it easier to experience its unpleasant symptoms – see a doctor when you start to experience andropause symptoms and don’t be afraid to ask questions – the doctor will try to remove all your doubts, and will advise you on the best form of treatment that will ease your ailments.
- Have your prostate examined – early diagnose of prostate enlargement will make it easier to cure.
- If you experience urinary incontinence ask your doctor for advice – it may be that urine loss is a signal of serious changes in your organism. The faster you react, the faster you will get rid of the problem. As long as you experience urine loss use Seni Man bladder control pads to protect your underwear.
- Keep a healthy diet rich in vitamin C and folic acid. These elements will help you maintain the proper level of the gonadal hormones. What is more, a proper diet will help you avoid gaining weight.
- Remember about your organism’s increased demand for calcium and vitamin D. If your diet is poor in these elements you should take supplements.
- Increase your physical activity – different research shows that even moderate, but systematic physical activity increases the level of testosterone in your blood. What is more, exercise increases the production of the happiness hormone, so it will make you fit and improve your mood as well.
- Go bowling, see a movie, and go out with your friends. Such forms of activity will lift your mood and make you feel better.
- Focus on yourself. This is the time when you can focus on your own needs, rediscover your partner and yourself, realise your passions.
- If you are a smoker – why not quit the habit? After just a few weeks without a cigarette you will feel much better and will be able to breathe deeper.