So after a few nights staring at the wee hours of the morning on your bedside clock and faking your way through work via coffee and pure adrenaline, you went to see a doctor for your insomnia. You expected to get out of there with a prescription for Ambien, not a diagnosis of male depression and low testosterone.
As it turns out, low testosterone is a condition that affects roughly 25% of men over the age of thirty, but is often under-diagnosed as simply “getting old.” Now you have all sorts of questions, like “Does low T affect my sleep? What about the recent weight gain, concentration problems, and my generally sour mood?”
The short answer to these questions, especially to “does low T affect my sleep,” is yes. However, like most things hormonal, insomnia and low T is a two-way street. if you’re over-working yourself and keeping irregular hours, this can in turn cause lower than optimal testosterone levels, which can further exacerbate the sleep and concentration problems.
The first thing you can do to combat low testosterone is to try and get enough rest, eat right, and generally take care of yourself. Even if this means going to bed an hour earlier than normal or switching out that burger for a salad once in a while, something is better than nothing. Low testosterone is actually a serious indicator of poorer life expectancy. You shouldn’t just be asking yourself “does low T affect my sleep,” but “how is my lifestyle effecting my overall health and testosterone levels.”
Of course, if your testosterone deficiency is severe enough to have been diagnosed, healthy lifestyle changes may not be enough to treat your problem. The most common pharmacological treatment for low testosterone is testosterone replacement therapy in the form of skin patches, mouth patches, injections, and implants.
The benefits of testosterone replacement therapy are many. For one, they’ll help you with your imminent sleep issues and you’ll probably see a general increase in your focus, energy level, and sex drive. There’s also reason to believe that your heart health and longevity will increase.
It should also be said that testosterone replacement therapy has some risks. If you have a history of blood clots or strokes for example, low T therapy might increase these risks. Some other uncommon side effects include breast enlargement, sleep apnea, and acne, but the good news is, these symptoms generally recede if you cease treatment.
If your low T problem is severe enough that you are considering this treatment, you should know that most of the time, financing testosterone therapy is totally doable. Most doctors and clinics that offer low T therapy accept insurance and/or offer flexible out-of-pocket payment plans.
Deal with your testosterone issue as soon as possible. You’re worth it, and it’s a more serious problem than is generally acknowledged.