By: Terry Burgess, Owner and Men’s Mid-life Coach, Upward MC
Normally when you hear the term menopause most of us think of that term regarding our female friends and family member in their late 30’s or 40’s. However, in the past two decades more research and medical literature shows men can suffer from menopause as well. Other names for this phenomenon include andropause or viropause.
Male menopause is defined as a multi-dimensional change in our lives which involves changes in seven (7) aspects or areas of life. These seven areas include hormonal, psychological, physical, interpersonal, social, spiritual, and sexual. These changes in each of these aspects vary in the duration as far as time and intensity from man to man.
Male menopause is very closely related to the male mid-life crisis. Male menopause though is focused on the psychological and physical changes. The research shows there are 25 million men in the US (ages 40-55) who are going though male menopause. Estimates show within the next two decades that number will more than double to 57 million men.
Whereas male mid-life crisis starts around ages 35-45 is triggered by the death or serious illness of a parent or very close friend or family member which forces them to face their own mortality. A man in mid-life crisis generally acts out to make changes in their life such as changing jobs or careers, relationships, or possession of valuable items.
Andropause men, whose ages range from 45-55 on average, are going through dramatic changes in their physical, psychological, and physiological areas of their life. Men who are going through andropause have these changes appear over a period of duration of 5 to 15 years depending on the male.
These changes may include but not limited to reduction in their libido/sex drive, erectile dysfunction, fatigue, weight gain, depression, and other emotional symptoms. There is also decreasing amounts of free, biologically active testosterone in these individuals. These changes the man is going though are often misunderstood by both the men as well as their family and friends causing stress in their relationships.
The biggest hurdle men face when dealing with Andropause is their own reluctance to discuss the symptoms with their physician. Many men refuse to discuss these issues because of embarrassment or being shy to talk about sexually related topics with their doctor such as andropause. Men need to be reminded that all men face some challenges of andropause and there is help if they come forward and seek it.
If you believe you are going through andropause talk with your primary care physician. They can diagnose andropause a blood sample test to determine your testosterone. If you are diagnosed with andropause your primary care physician can give you helpful advice to deal with andropause. Many individuals who are diagnosed with andropause can treat it with simple changes to their lifestyle. These lifestyle changes include healthy diet habits, regular exercise, getting a good night’s sleep, and stress reduction. If the individual is depressed your doctor may prescribe medication and/or therapy in addition to the lifestyle changes. Some individuals may require hormone therapy depending upon the severity of the effects of the decrease in male hormone levels.
If you are needing help or discernment on where to go next in your mid-life journey. Please feel free to contact me for a complimentary 1-hour coaching session. I can help you develop a simple starting point plan to help you get on the road from your “mid-life crisis” to your “mid-life rediscovery and redesign” for your life. You can visit http://bit.ly/SchedulewithTerry to schedule your complimentary coaching hour!
Terry is a Personal Leadership and Mid-life Coach for Men with Upward MC in Benton, Kentucky. He can be contacted via e-mail at Terry@upwardmc.com or by phone at 270-493-0967. His website can be found at http://www.terrypburgess.com