Testosterone is responsible for male sexual development and overall body composition. With the start of puberty, testosterone production rises and typically reaches its peak in most guys throughout their early to mid-twenties.
By definition, compounding shifting hormonal levels with testosterone boosters can have some side effects, and since your testosterone levels are highest when you are a teenager, things can get complicated. What can you expect if you’re a teen already taking testosterone supplements? Let’s find out!
Teenage boys and testosterone
The fundamental sexual developmental processes of spermatogenesis, testicular descent, expansion of the penis and testes, and arousal production are all mediated by testosterone. Approximately a 30x rise in testosterone production occurs in males throughout adolescence.
Additionally, testosterone controls secondary masculine traits. Male hair patterns, voice depth, and anabolic effects, such as periods of growth during puberty and skeletal and muscular growth, are among these secondary sex traits that are the result of that increase. The hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis is important for controlling gonadal function and testosterone levels.
Luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) are secreted by the anterior pituitary from the hypothalamus, which promotes testosterone production in the gonads.
Issues with the pituitary gland or the gonads might result in low testosterone or hypogonadism in boys. This medical condition prevents males from acquiring certain traits at the same rate and time as their peers. To promote development, hormone replacement treatment, which is simply a modest amount of testosterone alongside testosterone supplements, may be required.
Overloading on testosterone is a bad thing
Overproduction, underproduction, receptor insensitivity, or poor testosterone metabolism are all examples of dysfunction connected to testosterone. Hyperandrogenic (testosterone over productive) prepubescent males may exhibit virilization, such as penile enlargement, excessive hair growth in androgen-dependent sites, and voice deepening. The following disorders can cause an overproduction of testosterone:
Typical cases of testosterone overloading in teenage boys result from anabolic steroid abuse. Many side effects can happen when anabolic steroids are abused, from minor drawbacks to dangerous or even fatal ones. Simply put, the teenage body is not equipped to incorporate supraphysiological levels of exogenous testosterone properly.
Negative effects of too much testosterone in teens
Interaction between chemicals and the human body are expected to produce side effects. This is especially true when it comes to teenager physiognomy. Most negative effects of too much testosterone come from teenage boys abusing steroids for aesthetic and strength purposes. Some common side effects that occur are the following.
Excess testosterone production can also result in excess of an oily material known as sebum. Acne, which many teens already experience, is mainly brought on by sebum. In typical teenagers, the acne will heal up with body maturation and hormonal balance. However, acne breakouts brought on by the excessive use of test enhancers might continue well into adulthood.
Teenagers who use testosterone pills run the danger of causing lasting skin damage. Furthermore, there is a 50% possibility of developing painful acne as a result of the long-term negative effects of abusing anabolic-androgenic steroids, which is exacerbated by a young age.
The growth process involves naturally occurring testosterone. Therefore, it makes sense to believe that testosterone supplementation would only result in an increase in further growth. In a twist of irony, the opposite happens. Boosters won't accomplish anything other than stopping a teen's bone development if he doesn't have low testosterone levels.
When a teenager uses anabolic steroids, the artificially elevated testosterone levels that occur might cause the bones to cease developing before they should. After all, bone and muscle grow at significantly different rates; pushing the accelerator only makes the difference more dramatic. Research points to stiffer tendons in weightlifters who abuse anabolic steroids, which may enhance their risk of tendon damage.
Male Breast Syndrome
The condition known as gynecomastia, or simply "gyno," is characterized by the development of larger-than-normal mammary glands and breast tissue in males. Gyno can be challenging to repair and necessitate surgery since it results from a mismatch in the testosterone-to-estrogen ratio.
Keep In Mind: Gynecomastia is a common occurrence in teen boys because of hormonal level fluctuation. According to research, in 75-90% of teenagers, pubertal gynecomastia will go away over a period of 1 to 3 years.
These imbalances can be brought on by the conversion of excess testosterone to estrogen, known as “aromatization,” or by the shutdown of natural testosterone synthesis, which can happen when testosterone production is intentionally regulated for an extended period.
Overly Active Sex Drive
The synthesis of testosterone affects sexual desire. In both males and females, low testosterone lowers libido, whereas high testosterone raises it. Teenagers' bodies naturally create more sex hormones. Therefore, we know this leads to an increase in sexual desire thanks to a mixture of estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. Therefore, using supplements could cause an increased sex urge.
Additionally, estrogen-blocking supplements may simultaneously boost sex desire and impair sex performance. The belief that completely removing estrogen production in males somehow enhances masculine performance is false, as shown by extensive research (1,2). As a matter of fact, it does the opposite. An optimal ratio of hormones is needed for the best quality of life.
What do the brands say?
Although they allowed the use of supplements, manufacturers have warned against the use of testosterone and creatine boosters by teens on their labels. Some research was done by looking into the prevalence of supplementation marketing to teens. Researchers pretended to be 15-year-old boys and contacted 244 businesses to inquire about what they should buy to build muscle. The majority of shop personnel, 67% (164/244), indicated creatine, while 10% suggested testosterone.
Testosterone boosters are not advised in early or late adolescence, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics, which also conducted the research. That's because teens can't completely comprehend the health concerns associated with such an intervention on the hormone system. The burden falls on the parent to monitor their teenagers for not purchasing such supplements
Testosterone boosters can certainly have side effects on the teenage body. From mild symptoms like acne all the way to stunted growth and even fatal ones, like irreversible damage to natural hormone production.
Due to the sensitive and unpredictable nature of the still-developing teenage body, medical authorities strongly advise against using testosterone boosters such as supplements and anabolic steroids.
The healthiest course of action for teenagers is to use the natural vitality that they are experiencing and channel it to decent workouts, followed by proper nutrition. To end it on an anecdotal note, when's the last time you heard someone say, “My life got worse once I started working out and eating right.”?
Similar to other addictive behaviors, gambling is governed by the brain's dopamine system. Because testosterone impacts the level of dopamine activation, it is expected to have an impact on risk-taking behavior.
The effects of puberty have fully manifested by the time teenagers enter their early 20s, with the flow of sex hormones having slowed down.
Abusers of exogenous anabolic steroids have occasionally been reported to become combative due to fluctuating hormone levels. This is commonly referred to as “roid rage.”
Dihydrotestosterone, a hormone that is produced by testosterone, causes baldness in both sexes. While some people may have large quantities of this hormone, others may be genetically more susceptible to it.