Many men who find it difficult to talk about their feelings often shrug it off by saying it’s just a “guy thing”. However, there may be more to it. Men who find it difficult to convey their emotions and whom have a hard time interpreting the feelings of others may be suffering from a psychological condition called alexithymia.
Alexithymia is a personality trait that varies in severity from one individual to another. The main features of this personality trait include emotional unawareness, lack of social attachment and poor interpersonal relating. A person with this personality trait may also find it hard to recognize and understand the emotions of others.
Studies conducted in the past have shown that alexithymia is closely related to depression and the condition has long been associated with growing older. As men become older, they are more prone to developing depression, low testosterone and erectile dysfunction. In the late 1990s, Scandinavian researchers wanted to find out if alexithymia is brought on by aging or if it’s actually triggered by other things that come with getting older like a decreased desire for sex.
A study was carried out consisting of approximately 1,400 men who were 25 to 65 years old. They were asked to fill out questionnaires during a 3-year period wherein they reported any trouble they had in expressing how they feel, symptoms of depression and general life satisfaction levels. Of those test subjects, 116 were chosen – half of whom had symptoms of alexithymia and half who didn’t. These men were asked to fill out another questionnaire wherein they reported their alcohol intake, whether or not they smoked and other info. Blood tests were taken on these men to see what their testosterone levels were.
Those conducting the study discovered that regardless of age, those men with hypogonadism – a condition in which the body fails to produce enough testosterone scored higher on a test used to measure alexithymia than those who didn’t have hypogonadism. Even though alexithymia is often linked to aging, this wasn’t the case in this study. Instead, those men with hypogonadism were the ones who had a history of depression and difficulty expressing their emotions.
However, the biological mechanisms that link testosterone and hypogonadism are unclear. Some possible reasons include obesity, metabolic disorders and decreased interest in sex that comes with having testosterone levels lower than average.
If you think you may be suffering from hypogonadism, contact Titan T-Center & Weight Loss today. We are a Texas men’s health clinic serving League City and Houston, Texas that specializes in diagnosing and treating men with low testosterone levels. We offer a variety of treatment plans customized to each individual patient’s needs.