Female menopause marks the end of a woman’s reproductive years. But women aren’t the only ones who have to deal with hormonal changes as they age.
Many men suffer from andropause also known as the male menopause. This occurs when their hormone production stops. When men reach their late forties or early fifties, they experience changes in their body.
Symptoms include a reduction in libido, or sex drive, erectile dysfunction, weight gain, depression, and some emotional symptoms which may be similar to the changes experienced by women.
A man’s testosterone levels start to drop gradually after the age of 30. The drop in the levels which comes with age is not believed to be the cause of male menopause. If it was so, every man would experience it.
Most men in their seventies have 40% less testosterone in their system than they did when they were in their 30’s.
It tends to affect older males with heart diseases, obesity, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes which suggest that it’s not only a change in the levels of male hormones that develop male menopause.
Some other causes are underlying health problems, smoking, lack of exercise, alcohol consumption, stress, anxiety and sleep deprivation.
Men who experience it will receive treatment based on his symptoms since the condition has not been clearly defined unlike menopause for women.
For example, a patient with obesity will be advised to lose weight and eat a well-balanced and healthy diet. A patient with diabetes, heart or cardiovascular diseases will require suitable treatment. A patient with signs of depression or anxiety can be referred to a psychiatrist who can prescribe antidepressants, behavioral therapy or both.
There is not enough evidence to define it as a true medical condition. A healthy diet, regular exercise, avoiding tobacco and limited alcohol is more likely to help avoid the condition.