Testosterone is a hormone found in both men and women in differing amounts. Some of the functions of testosterone are the same in both genders, such as those tied to energy level and sex drive. However, testosterone is produced differently in each gender. In females testosterone is produced by the ovaries and adrenal glands. If these two organs are not functioning at optimal levels, which can happen for a multitude of reasons, then it is possible that your testosterone levels are out of whack.
In January, I talked with my doctor about feeling exhausted all the time, having severe mood swings, decreased libido, feeling anxious for seemingly no reason, and not wanting to spend time with friends or family. I was not my normal self and I am only 27 years old.
After talking through some options, my doctor suggested some blood panels to see if everything was functioning normally. The following week, when my results came back she said that I had low Vitamin D (I’ll talk more about this vitamin deficiency in a separate post) and low testosterone.
My reaction was similar to the man in this cartoon…
First of all, notice that the two characters in the cartoon are both men. I had heard all about men having low testosterone, but women? Secondly, remember that number I mentioned a few paragraphs up – I’m NOT EVEN 30 YET!?! My body is supposed to be in peak physical shape NOW. Right?
After some online research, I learned that I had quite a few misconceptions about low testosterone in women.
According to AllWomensTalk, the following 7 warning signs may indicate that you have low testosterone:
- Weight Gain
- Low Libido
- Brain Fog
- Lack of Motivation
- Constant Fatigue
- Just “Not Feeling Right”
An article in Prevention Magazine, also adds that “having a weak grip” and other indicators of osteoporosis may also be cause to get your testosterone level checked.
In “10 Signs of Low Testosterone in Women,” Anna Fleet mentions that disrupted sleep, irregular periods, anxiety, hair loss, and anorgasmia, or the inability to orgasm, are also associated with low levels of testosterone in women.
As previously mentioned, I experienced quite a few of these symptoms. I was reassured by the results of my research, because they corroborated my doctor’s diagnosis. I plan to discuss the treatment methods that I have chosen to raise my testosterone levels in a future post.
I would like to take a moment to caution my reader’s not to assume that you have low testosterone based on the above-mentioned symptoms or internet research alone. I tend to google symptoms and have frequented WebMD on occasion, so I do not want to add any fuel to my fellow hypochondriac’s fire.
As an additional disclaimer, I would like to remind everyone that I do not claim to be a medical professional or an expert on low testosterone. I am only sharing the results of my research and my personal experiences with you.
Lastly, please consider that many of the symptoms associated with low testosterone are also associated with other vitamin deficiencies, hormone imbalances, and mental health concerns. There truly is a lot of overlap! Therefore, it would be wise to consider all options and seek the input of a medical professional rather than self-diagnosing.
In my opinion, if you are concerned about your testosterone levels based on the symptoms outlined above, then I encourage you to share your fears with your doctor and request that a comprehensive blood panel be completed.
Thanks for reading! Writing about low testosterone was therapeutic for me and hopefully informative for you. My intention in writing this post is to shed light on a subject that women don’t usually talk about and encourage others to know that they are not walking this path alone.