Dangers of anabolic steroids – More than meets the eye
If you are considering taking anabolic steroids you may want to consider some of the possible dangers of anabolic steroids before you stick that needle in your arm.
Anabolic steroids are derivatives (synthetic substances) of the primary male sex hormone, testosterone. However, anabolic-androgenic steroids (AAS) is a more acceptable term, with anabolic referring to the ability to promote the growth of muscle mass and androgenic meaning that they have the overall effect of enhancing male sex characteristics.
As is the case with many substances that are widely abused these days, the primary purpose of anabolic steroids was to help cure hypogonadism in the first place.
Hypogonadism is a condition in which the body is not able to produce testosterone, which has the end result of slowing down some natural processes and delaying puberty.
There are many other diseases and conditions anabolic steroids are used for, such as cancer, AIDS, bone marrow stimulation, growth stimulation, stimulation of appetite, etc.
The easier it becomes to get your hands on anabolic steroids, be it in a legal way or not, the more frequent their abuse is going to be. This is one of the main issues in today’s sports, with many successful athletes all over the world having confessed that they used anabolic steroids at some point in their lives to increase the chances of becoming the best of the best.
Even though there’s a common belief that anabolic steroids exist only as pills, there are several different forms: injectable steroids, oral pills, creams/gels and skin patches. The most common way of their abuse is injecting them straight into the muscles or taking oral pills.
Given that many people rely on the black market to get their hands on the controversial substances, loads of unique and rather confusing street names are used in the United States. For that reason, anabolic steroids are also known as the ‘juice’, ‘gym candy’, ‘pumpers’ and ‘stackers’.
Potential Dangers of Using Anabolic Steroids
The real truth is that it is relatively easy to get confused when you’re about to make a decision on whether you should stick to a healthy lifestyle and put much more effort into becoming a successful athlete or take the easier way and invite science to help you improve much faster.
If you belong to the group of people who went with the latter option, you should be aware of the potential side effects anabolic steroids may cause (before it’s too late to change anything).
As you might already know, anabolic steroids can’t be bought without a prescription (at least in the United States). However, this does not seem to prevent some people from finding alternative solutions to purchase large quantities and thus ensure that they won’t have to worry about the ‘fuel’ for at least a couple of months.
Use of anabolic steroids may have both physical and psychological effects, as well as short-term and long-term ones. Short-term effects include reckless behavior, delusions (depending on the seriousness of the situation, can be very dangerous at times), aggressive and violent behavior, rapid weight gain and improved appetite.
Long-term effects can have some serious health consequences, some of which are:
This is probably the crucial moment to realize how dangerous anabolic steroids can be. Being a sensitive topic as it is, impotence should make you wonder if taking any substances is worth the potential consequences.
High Blood Pressure and Heart Problems
Not only should people with heart problems avoid taking substances that help the muscle mass grow, but so should the healthy ones, since being healthy won’t prevent heart problems from occurring.
Androgenic Side Effects
As mentioned at the very beginning, anabolic steroids are known for the overall effect of enhancing male sex characteristics, such as increased body hair, deepened voice, rougher skin, etc. Androgenic effects have a greater impact on women since abnormal levels of testosterone-like substances in their bodies can completely destroy their femininity.
Even though you’re emotionally attached to your lovely hair, you risk losing it if you use anabolic steroids. If that sounds scary enough to you, keep in mind that this might also be one of the least dangerous long-term side effects.
- Liver Disease
- Kidney Problems
- Menstrual Irregularities in Women
- Psychological effects
What many people don’t know is that anabolic steroids show their full potential only if they are taken regularly. Once you stop taking a daily dose, your body will experience some noticeable changes and will not be able to cope with any difficult challenges.
Your muscle mass will start to decrease rapidly and the good old feeling of satisfaction will momentously disappear. Just imagine yourself in such a situation and you’ll be able to understand why many people just couldn’t stop taking anabolic steroids.
Whatsoever, after you decide to quit your old and unhealthy lifestyle, your testosterone level will be much lower than usual and you’ll feel quite depressed during the first few weeks.
Unfortunately, this is not where things end, since many other side effects are known to occur: headaches, insomnia, reduced sexual functioning, increased cholesterol level, shrinking of the testicles, increased breast size in men, decreased sperm count, increased risk for prostate cancer and stunted growth, which is a consequence of the body being sent a signal to slow down the bone growth.
The price you have to pay if you decide to take a shortcut by using anabolic steroids and hope that the things will go just as planned seems to be way too high for most. As you found out today, there are many potential side effects that it’s basically impossible to list all of them in one place.
The fact that you may also experience long-term consequences, some of which may put your health at serious risk, should lead you to think more than once before making any important decisions related to your lifestyle and health. Given that we’re all mature enough to take care of ourselves, there aren’t any excuses and irrational explanations why anyone would be exposed to unnecessary amounts of risk just because it’s much more beneficial short term.
When you take all the factors into account, it seems like completely relying on your athletic capabilities is the only way to succeed and always be proud of what you do.