Irritable Male Syndrome is defined as a state of hypersensitivity, anxiety, frustration, and anger that occurs in men and is associated with biochemical changes, hormonal fluctuations, stress, and loss of “Male identity”.
It is little known, but very common. It is true that the term is recent but, despite everything, it reflects a reality which, apparently, is linked to hormonal balance and the socio-emotional crossroads through which one must pass at this time of life.
In 2002, Scottish scientist Gerald Lincoln of the Medical Research Council’s Human Reproduction Unit shared the results of a multi-year research in which the testosterone level of male animals had been measured. He found in his report that the gradual decrease in this hormone made them more irritable, sensitive and sexually uncommunicative.
The cases studied referred to a lack of energy, lack of motivation, decreased sexual desire and significant mood changes: more irritability, aggression, and depression. They took, for example, the case of Grinch, the dwarf of Snow White. And this is why such a name was given to this Irritable Male Syndrome.
According to Dr. R. Petty, director of the Wellman Clinic in London and an expert in the study of this male psychological condition, Irritable Male Syndrome affects 50% of men over the age of 45. It is not formally identified, and treatments are thought to be unsuccessful because we do not understand it well or because we do not understand it at all. According to her, the hormone replacement will, in a short time, look like a treatment similar to that of women.
Table of Contents
Is This The Famous Midlife Crisis, The One We Fear so Much?
The description of the Irritable Male Syndrome may remind us of what we know more often as the “midlife crisis”. Indeed, it looks like it. However, we cannot trivialize the sensations and feelings of these men who suffer from it.
We must be mindful of the fact that Irritable Male Syndrome does not have a diagnosed entity as such; Currently, we are developing theories and researching it to provide a scientific and popular approach to this set of symptoms that some men suffer from at a certain point in life.
We should not be alarmed at the creation of a new pathology that reflects a reality we already know. In here we just meant to help us realize that men’s physical and emotional health requires attention and care.
What is its Origin? 5 keys to Understanding this Irritable Male Syndrome
The origin of this set of Irritable Male Syndrome seems to be made up of 5 points which, when put together, feedback and generate this psychological and physical state so unpleasant for the men who suffer from it and for those around them.
Let’s see in more detail the factors that create this evil:
1. Hormonal Fluctuations
This has to be taken into account because testosterone is also partly to blame for behaviors like aggression, competitiveness and even violence. So, according to Jed Diamond (writer of the book Male Irritability Syndrome), “we know that men with too high testosterone levels can become irritable and aggressive. But recent research shows that the majority of hormonal problems in men are caused by too low testosterone levels.”
Another responsible substance is serotonin. As seen in some studies, one of the most common causes of low serotonin levels is diet and drinking habits. Judith Wurtman and her colleagues at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have found that a diet high in protein and low in carbohydrates can cause increased irritability in men.
This study showed that men have a habit of confusing their cravings for healthy carbohydrates (found in vegetables, potatoes, rice, corn, squash, etc.) with cravings for protein that are found in meat. “Eating protein when we need carbohydrates makes us grumpy, irritable or worried,” say these authors.
Over the course of these studies, it was also found that alcohol consumption initially increases serotonin levels but chronic consumption drastically decreases it, which can lead to depressive states, cravings for carbohydrates. , sleep disturbances and a greater propensity for Irritable Male Syndrome.
3. Increased Stress Levels
For our bodies, a synonym for stress is “change”, be it good or bad. A move, a change of job, an enlargement of the family, etc. all of these can be positive and wonderful changes. Even so, these changes can generate tension and with it the increase of other emotional states such as anxiety or irritability.
4. Changes in Roles and Identity
Society is changing, but currently the education and information we receive from outside about the gender roles that “we should” adopt is confused. Thus, it is normal that, in an environment where one lives with a double morality about this topic, it is difficult to assume and act accordingly in favor of personal freedom.
5. The Flaw or Imperfection of Love
Irritability increases when you find yourself disconnected from your relationship. As we know, this is a sadly common occurrence in our relationships because very often routine, stress, loss of communication, incomprehension and personal grief come together to generate emotional distance from those around us.