The first question a man asks about male menopause is usually about declining sexual function. Can I continue to perform? Will I still enjoy sex? Will sex even matter to me in the future? Somewhere is his 40's, maybe 50's, a man may notice that things are not the same as they used to be in the bedroom and he begins to worry. While male menopause symptoms are not just about sex, concerns in this area are real and with reason.
In the United States alone, perhaps as many as 30 million men will at sometime suffer from erectile dysfunction, the most recognized male menopause symptom. And if the other symptoms are added in, it's clear that tens of millions of men in their 40's and older may need treatment.
Here are common symptoms of male menopause:
Declining Sex Drive – not only does the man have less interest in sex, he will also have sex less frequently. From an average of 3-4 times a week in his twenties, sexual frequency declines to about once a week or so in his fifties to 1-2 times a month in his late seventies. A related male menopause symptom is that sex becomes less enjoyable for the man.
Fatigue and Less Energy – once able to be on the go all day and into the night, now the male's activity pace slows considerably. The same physical activity now takes longer with considerably more effort.
Body Composition – if a man is sedentary, he will lose about 10% of his lean body mass every 10 years after age 30. Lean body mass loss means loss of muscle! This muscle loss is generally accompanied by an increase in fat mass and a tendency to become obese. And obesity is related to numerous health and wellness problems.
Forgetfulness, Inability to Concentrate – although anyone can occasionally forget, there's a noticeable change in the ability to remember in male menopause. And it becomes more difficult to focus, which ordinarily is one of the strengths of a man.
Feelings of Anger, Anxiety, Depression, Irritability – events or actions of others that once were dealt with easily by the male now become more difficult to deal with during male menopause.
Difficulties with Quality of Sleep – sleep, especially uninterrupted deep sleep, is the time when the body repairs itself and gets ready for another trip through the next day. In male menopause, the man can have difficulty in falling asleep, he may not sleep well, and he can have a restless time during the last part of sleep before awakening. Not getting enough quality sleep over time can have serious health consequences.
Confusion, Indecision, Lower Self-Confidence – part of being a healthy male is the ability to solve problems, to be efficient, to be competent, to have power and to achieve. A consequence of experiencing male menopause is the erosion of these crucial aspects of being a man.
Osteoporosis, Increased Risk of Bone Fractures – even though a male begins to lose bone mass considerably later in life than a woman on the average, bone loss will happen and can be considered another symptom of male menopause. Women often begin losing bone mass as early as in their thirties, whereas bone loss begins later in life for a man.
Having male menopause symptoms and losing one's sexuality is related to factors that include hormonal, mental and physiological problems. Declining hormone levels, especially testosterone, will definitely create havoc in a male's sex life. Other factors that can cause a loss of interest in sex or sexual activity include stress, obesity, alcohol and tobacco abuse, physical inactivity, illness and prescription drugs side effects. Do men in their 40's and older just have to accept these kinds of symptoms as 'what do you expect – you're getting older'? NO! There ARE steps men over 40 can take that can help them stay healthy, full of energy and active (including sexually active) for decades to come. To read about improving men's health and vitality, visit Male Menopause to learn more.