What Does Taking Testosterone Feel Like?

by Benjamin Bunting BA(Hons) PGCert

Ben Bunting BA(Hons) PGCert Sports and Exercise Nutrition Level 2 Strength and Conditioning CoachWritten by Ben Bunting: BA, PGCert. (Sport & Exercise Nutrition) // British Army Physical Training Instructor // S&C Coach.

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Have you ever wondered about the impact of testosterone on emotions?

Testosterone is often associated with physical changes in the body, but its effects on the mind are equally significant.

In this article, we delve into the emotional effects of testosterone, shedding light on how it can lead to increased clarity and heightened mood.

Research suggests that testosterone plays a crucial role in regulating emotions. It can enhance feelings of confidence, assertiveness, and a sense of well-being.

Additionally, testosterone has been found to improve focus and concentration, making it easier to navigate challenges and achieve goals.

Understanding how testosterone influences emotions is particularly important for both men and women.

While testosterone is typically associated with males, females also produce small amounts of this hormone. By uncovering the emotional effects of testosterone, we can gain a deeper understanding of ourselves and others.

Join us as we explore the fascinating link between testosterone and emotions, debunking myths and providing insights into this often misunderstood aspect of human psychology.

Discover how testosterone can transform the way we navigate the world, and gain valuable insights into its emotional benefits.

The Importance of Testosterone

Testosterone has numerous positive health and disease benefits that range from sexual drive and fat storage to bone strength and even neuromuscular regulation.

Testosterone is produced in both the testicles and women's ovaries - in men its levels tend to drop upon fatherhood or marriage while its production by women spikes when reaching milestones such as motherhood or pregnancy occurs.

Testosterone is essential to male sexual health and development, regulating facial and pubic hair growth during puberty as well as stimulating testes to produce more sperm.

Furthermore, testosterone plays an essential role in protein anabolism, muscle mass accumulation, bone density retention and red blood cell production.

A low testosterone level (known as hypogonadism ) can negatively impact mood, leading to issues with erectile dysfunction, weight gain, fatigue, irritability and even depression.

Testosterone levels generally decline with age, yet through diet and physical activity, adults can maintain healthy levels.

A diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids and resistance exercises such as leg workouts like squats can be especially beneficial in maintaining testosterone levels.

What Does Taking Testosterone Feel Like?

Testosterone can help strengthen muscle, protect bones, increase sexual drive and enhance mood; its effects may differ depending on who uses it and the duration of treatment.

Too little testosterone can cause many undesirable symptoms. The symptoms of low testosterone include an increase in body fat, decreased muscle mass, sleep disorders, fewer erections and infertility.

Hypogonadal men may also experience emotional and behavioral symptoms. These mood-related signs and symptoms include:

  • Anxiety and irritability
  • Motivation and confidence are low
  • Feelings sadness and depression
  • Memory and Focus Problems
  • Feelings of fatigue increase
  • Reduced arousal, sex drive

How long does it take to gain any effects?

 it has been reported that sexual interest rises after 3 weeks, and the effects plateau at 6 weeks.

Changes in erections/ejaculations may require up to 6 months. The effects on your quality of life are visible within three to four weeks. However, the maximum benefits may take longer.

After 3-6 weeks, the effects on depression are detectable. The maximum is after 18-30 week.

The effects on erythropoiesis can be seen at 3 months and peak at 9-12 month.

The volume and antigen of prostate-specific antibodies are increasing, but only marginally. They plateau at 12 months. Any further increases should be attributed to aging, not therapy.

The effects on lipids are maximal 6-12 months after the initial 4 week period. Insulin sensitivity can improve in a few days. However, effects on glycemic management are evident after 3-12 month.

Within 12-16 weeks changes in lean body mass and muscle strength are observed. These stabilize after 6-12 months but may continue to improve over the years.

Inflammation is reduced within 3-12 weeks. After 6 months, the effects on bones are evident. They continue for at least 3 years.

Testosterone and its effects on emotions

Testosterone affects our brain and how we respond to emotional-related stimuli, altering functional MRI connectivity between amygdala, orbitofrontal cortex, thalamus during emotion-related tasks; decreasing functional coupling between amygdala and lateral prefrontal cortex during social threat processing tasks.

Researchers discovered that taking testosterone made it more difficult to read emotions from pictures of other people's eyes, thus raising questions about its place in emotional intelligence.

While this study was small-scale, its findings still raise significant issues around testosterone's place within emotional intelligence. 

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How testosterone impacts mood swings

The most common psychiatric disorders are anxiety and depression. However, the current research in humans and animals has not yet provided a clear understanding as to the neural mechanisms that underlie their etiology.

That said, according to limited studies, high testosterone levels are associated with increased rates of depression and hypomania.

Low testosterone levels are linked to depressive disorders among certain subpopulations. It is not clear that low testosterone levels in men are a routine cause of major depression.

In males with hypogonadism (a condition where reduced functional activity of gonads leads to decreased testosterone levels), the relationship between testosterone, anxiety disorders and major depression disorder is apparent.

Men with hypogonadal levels of androgens are more likely to suffer from anxiety disorders and depression than men with normal androgen levels.

The anxiety-like behaviours of males and females are likely to be influenced by early organization effects. However, testosterone and its metabolites may have an activational effect. 

According to current experimental studies on rodents, exposure to testosterone during brain development is associated with higher anxiety levels in males.

Anxiogenesis is also caused by the absence of testosterone when neuronal circuits that are involved in anxiety are activated.

Research shows that men who are treated with androgen depleting drugs to treat prostate cancer are more likely to develop anxiety disorders or major depression disorder.

Furthermore, a hypogonadal man with HIV is more likely to suffer from depression, but this can be reversed through testosterone treatment.

Collectively, several reports suggest that testosterone-replacement therapy in hypogonadal men greatly improves mood, alleviates anxiety, and mitigates symptoms of depression.

The connection between testosterone and aggression

Evidence suggests that individuals who exhibit aggressive behavior such as violent criminals, or prisoners, have higher testosterone levels.

In addition, several field studies have shown that testosterone levels rise during aggressive phases in sports games. In more sensitive laboratory studies, testosterone levels have been found to increase in participants who win competitions, dominate trials, or face off against factitious adversaries.

High cortisol levels are related to submissive behaviors. The psychological balance between cortisol and testosterone is a biological one.

A study of testosterone, cortisol, and thyroxin, conducted on 4179 veterans and given its large sample size, showed that testosterone levels at rest were positively related to aggressive and antisocial behavior. 

However, studies show that exgenous testosterone doses as high as 200 mg per week or even 600mg per week administered to men without low testosterone had no impact on their levels of aggression or anger is interesting.

Testosterone and confidence

Confidence is a complex trait influenced by many factors, including hormones.

Testosterone, the primary male sex hormone, has been linked with feelings of confidence among men; higher levels may make people appear more capable in performing various tasks.

Testosterone is involved in many behaviors including aggression and dominance. It can also boost your self-esteem and encourage competition.

As with sexual activity, competitive sports can increase or decrease testosterone levels in men.

Low testosterone can lead to a lack of motivation and a loss in confidence. Low testosterone can affect a man’s concentration or make him feel sad. Low testosterone can lead to sleep disorders and fatigue. 

How testosterone affects emotional intimacy

The evolutionary perspective is that testosterone production is costly. "High testosterone" behaviors like aggression, competition, extradyadic sex, and other sexual activities can interfere with more nurturing behaviors like caring for children and maintaining intimate relationships.

This study shows that long-term testosterone levels are associated with an increased emotional reactivity within the brain. These results indicate that individuals with high testosterone trait levels are more sensitive to emotional cues. 

The role of testosterone in self-esteem and body image

This 2018 investigation showed that perceived success in a male-male sports contest increased androgenization and self-perceived mate value.

It also led to a greater willingness to approach attractive females versus other individuals. 

Testosterone and quality of life

Low testosterone levels can be observed in older men as well. This is a functional hypogonadism that may also cause depressive symptoms.

These include dysthymia, fatigue, inertia, hopelessness, and suicidal feelings. The testosterone hormone can also influence anxiety symptoms, from unfocused fear to phobic anxiety and open panic.

As shown in large placebo-controlled studies, testosterone replacement can positively influence the quality of life for older hypogonadal males.

Are there any side effects of taking testosterone therapy? 

TRT can help men with low testosterone feel more confident. The men feel more vital and have an improved sense of well-being. TRT may cause unwanted effects, which can negatively affect how you feel if not under medical supervision.

Here are some examples on the adverse effects of TRT to mood and behavior:

  • Fatigue and lack energy
  • Low mood and anxiety
  • Feeling more emotional than usual

The side effects of TRT are initially counterintuitive. TRT should energize you and improve your mood. All of these examples are due to increased levels of oestrogen. Exogenous testosterone is converted into oestrogen by the body.

You can reduce these side effects by changing your testosterone dosage or frequency. You can reduce the conversion of the testosterone into oestrogen using aromatase inhibiters, or by using oestrogen blocking agents to block the effects oestrogen.

These side effects emphasize the need for medical supervision while taking TRT. 

Alternatives to using testosterone therapy drugs?

Military Muscle Testosterone Booster Naturally Increases Testosterone.

Many men who train hard in the gym and compete in sports may experience low testosterone levels, leading to decreased muscle growth, slower recovery times, and a decline in their libido.

Hormone replacement therapy such as gels, injections or patches may provide temporary relief; however, these therapies may be risky and suppress natural testosterone production.

Military Muscle is an all-natural dietary supplement developed specifically with soldiers, athletes and service personnel in mind to fulfill any deficiencies caused by rigorous training regimes.

The Military Muscle Formula contains 14 natural vitamins, minerals and extracts with strong clinical evidence supporting their ability to increase testosterone and improve performance.

These ingredients include vitamin D3, ashwagandha, fenugreek, zinc and boron, K2 and mucuna pruriens have both been shown to reduce stress while stimulating testosterone secretion.

This supplement boasts all of the ingredients expected in premium-grade supplements.

What sets it apart from others, though, is its soldier ownership, money back guarantee and active Trustpilot page for customers to leave reviews (currently boasting an exceptional rating). 

Conclusion

Testosterone plays an integral part in shaping men's appearance and masculine characteristics, from helping form male genitalia at birth, spurring facial and body hair growth, building muscle mass and sexual drive, to regulating moods such as aggression or impulsiveness.

When levels drop below optimal levels, men may become depressed or lose motivation to participate in activities; testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) can alleviate such symptoms.

TRT may cause physical changes that you'll immediately recognize, including thicker and oilier skin as your pores open to accommodate more testosterone in your system. You might also sweat more or smell differently after beginning treatment - both are common side effects associated with testosterone use.

People taking TRT may initially experience an increase in blood pressure or cholesterol, though this usually subsides once their bodies adjust to taking the medication.

TRT may also cause side effects like bloating, fluid retention, and increased red blood cell counts - in such instances you should consider taking diuretics such as Spironolactone to alleviate symptoms. 

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