Steroids Reviews | What is the Purpose of Steroids?
To be one step ahead of the competition, bodybuilders and athletes take illegal steroids. Almost every day there is a new headline in the papers about it.
Anabolic steroids can be used to increase the production of testosterone. The human hormonal system can be affected by these hormones. People take them via injection or orally.
Anabolic steroids aim to improve consumers muscle mass.
Anabolic is a word used to describe the capability to build muscles.
Catabolic corticosteroids aren’t the same as anabolic steroids. The former is used daily as a medication to reduce inflammation during a disease process.
Nowadays, it is a common occurrence for athletes to take anabolic steroids to improve their performance. In some cases, said drug abuse starts in middle school.
Steroids, several types
The human body can create more than one (two actually) sort of steroid. The adrenal gland, which is on top of the kidney, is where corticosteroids are produced. Cortisol and aldosterone are some of the hormones the adrenal gland produces. The latter regulates sodium level in the human body, and the former reduces inflammation as a response to the stress system of the human boy. Corticosteroid medications such as dexamethasone, prednisone, and prednisolone can be taken orally, through intramuscular injection or intravenously. The mentioned medications can help treat rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, systematic lupus (erythematosus), IBS and many more disease that have inflammation as one of the symptoms. Dermatitis in the Latin language means skin inflammation. Creams and steroid ointments such as betamethasone and triamcinolone are used to treat dermatitis.
Ovaries and testicles produce testosterone. Said production is controlled by hormones that are anabolic and androgenic steroids. The development of male (sex) characteristics is a goal of the androgenic steroid. The anabolic boosts protein production which as a result helps build body tissue. At the brain’s base, there is a pituitary gland. This gland helps control hormone secretion and the production of testosterone. FSH (aka follicle-stimulating hormone) and HGH are only a couple of hormones the pituitary creates. The mentioned hormones help stimulate ovary and testis function as well.
Androgenic and Anabolic steroids
If the body can’t create enough hormones, supplementation is necessary. In this case, people use prescribed medication, such as androgenic and anabolic steroids. Testosterone and HGH might be included in these hormone supplements. Health-care providers prescribe the mentioned medications. However, there are people who take said medications illegally. They abuse drugs to improve their body image and athletic performance. As a result of the growth of muscle mass, a person who is well-nourished can gain weight.
Even though anabolic steroids are very beneficial, there are many side effects that are irreversible and quite serious. Due to a high level of testosterone, these side effects may occur. The mentioned side effects include aggressive and violent behavior, higher cholesterol, liver damage, baldness, higher blood pressure, acne, and heart failure.
There is more than one group of anabolic steroids. Some groups can imitate testosterone action. Other groups of anabolic steroids prompt the human body to create more testosterone. It is achieved by meddling with the hormone regulation system in the human body. Using any type of anabolic steroid has the same outcome. Extra testosterone can influence organ and cell function in the human body.
Every country may use a different name for a steroid seeing as there is a myriad of them. Steroids such as oxymetholone and methyltestosterone can have almost the same chemical aspects as testosterone. Also, there are designer steroids. These steroids were produced to pass a drug test. Examples would be desoxymethyltestosterone and norbolethone.
Here are mentioned some anabolic steroids:
Anabolic steroids can be consumed by pill or injected into the human body. It really depends on the group of the anabolic steroids. Seeing as the mentioned medication has a specific way of being metabolized, they have to have recovery time. People tend to take steroids in cycles as to avoid detection. Using a steroid in a cycle means consuming the steroid a few days and then having a break, repeating the process weeks or sometimes days later.
What Are the Consequences of Misusing Steroids for a Longer Period of Time?
Odd mood swings and quick weight gain are the first signs of amusement of anabolic steroids, being more aggressive is a sign as well. In most cases, there is the appearance of acne.
Due to higher levels of anabolic and androgen drugs in the human body, the side effects appear.
Naturally produced testosterone is suppressed by steroids males take. Some consequences of this action may be atrophy (shrinkage of testicle size), baldness, lower sperm production, and infertility. If males take more steroids than they need, they end up having gynecomastia. It means they will have bigger breasts as a result of estrogen in their body that was produced by the steroids. Females can suffer from the misuse of steroids as well. Baldness, bigger hair production, deeper voice, and changed up the menstrual cycle are some of the side effects of higher testosterone levels in the female body.
Said steroids can have an impact on different human organs:
- With more sebaceous glands in human skin, acne will appear.
- Liver cancer or liver damage are possible risks.
In more than one way, human hear is in danger. Heart muscle can enlarge the same as any other muscle, as a result of increased steroids in the body. In other words, hypertrophy (enlargement of heart muscle) can cause cardiomyopathy which is slower pumping of the heart muscle. It can also cause palpitations, arrhythmias, and even cardiac death. Arrhythmias are heart rate shifts that occur as a result of ECS changes. Higher blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and blood sugars are also side effects of using steroids. Stroke and heart attack can be caused by said side effects.
Along with steroid abuse comes aggression. People have experienced manic outbursts of aggression, commonly known as roid rage. Violence is a result of this type of behavior. Depression and excitement can also be psychiatric effects of using steroids.
People who haven’t completed their growth process (adolescents), using steroids can result in a stoppage of growth of their muscles, joints, and bones. Also, untimely sexual development can happen.
When is the Right Moment to Ask for Medical help in Case of Steroid Abuse?
Parents should look for medical help if they think their child misuses steroids. Also, getting psychological counseling is a good idea.
How Can Doctors Diagnose Abuse of Steroids?
In most cases, steroids stay in the human body for a longer period of time. Usually, they are detected in urine (drug) tests. Some designer steroids are created to be harder to detect. It means they may be able to avoid detection. WADA, along with other laboratories work daily to create better tests for steroids that are used to improve an athlete’s performance.
Sometimes masking agents (drugs) are found instead of the steroid itself. Some of the substances that can cause a negative drug test are furosemide, water pills or bumetanide. If masking drugs are found in elite or professional athlete’s urine samples, they have failed the drug test. There is more information about it on WADA’s official website.
How Can People Treat Steroid Addiction?
Anabolic steroid addiction isn’t the same as alcohol and drug addiction. Although according to some studies steroid and caffeine cravings are very similar.
The pursuit of effects and lifestyle that come with steroids is what makes them addictive. People addicted to steroids are faced with bigger body size and muscle mass. Also, they have serious self-perception issues.
Treatment of the addiction needs to focus on the physical aspect of taking steroids, but emotional need to use them as well.
How Can People Medically Treat Misusement of Steroids?
Medical therapy deals with the existing side effects of using steroids. When people stop taking steroids, most of the side effects are reversible. However, some complications are long-lasting. In those cases, they need to be monitored for a longer period of time.
Alternative Therapy for Misuse of Steroids
Counseling can help with the reasons that caused people to start using steroids. It can help with psychiatric (side) effects as well.
How to Prevent the Abuse of Steroids
In order to avoid using anabolic steroids, the first thing to do is to prevent taking them. No matter the reason for using anabolic steroids, people should restrain themselves for using them for the first time. Steps that can be taken to avoid the problem are an education in schools and at homes. The education needs to include the repercussions of cheating and also the dangerous side effects that can happen if people abuse steroids.
Taking anabolic steroids is forbidden by the law. Whether somebody has anabolic steroids or provides them for other people, that person will face legal charges.
Will Abuse of Steroids Still Be a Thing in the Future?
Elite athletes may lose their status as a role model if they are caught taking anabolic steroids. Maybe then the number of people consuming anabolic steroids will be lower. Another factor that may lead to a lower number of anabolic consumers is testing younger athletes. All of this will be futile if adolescents continue to think they need anabolic steroids to compete in sports. This fact may prolong the use of anabolic steroids.
Complications for Girls
Girls who take anabolic steroids will face the following:
- rapid body and facial hair growth
- being more masculine, breast shrinkage and loss of another feminine (body) characteristic, as well as having a deeper voice
- augmentation of clitoris
- changes in the menstrual cycle
- Complications for Guys
- Guys may face the following complications:
- reduction of testicles
- painful urination
- developing breasts
- not having an erection
- infertility and lower sperm count
Mixing and Steroid Addiction
Sometimes people use steroids in “cycles”. They take more doses for a certain amount of time, then stop, and start taking them again. If people stack steroids, it means they take more than one anabolic steroid. Pyramiding steroids mean an athlete starts with a smaller dose of the steroid. Over time the athlete includes more steroids, raises the dosage or takes the steroids more frequently. It all leads to a complete cycle. Consumers strongly believe mixing steroids will improve the effects that each drug has individually. Thanks to pyramiding, the human body can get used to the bigger dose of steroids. The human body can recover from the drugs during the steroid-free time.
People say they will use steroids for this season or this school year only. However, they mostly can’t stop taking steroids as they are addictive.
Even if they manage to stop using steroids, consumers will face withdrawal. The withdrawal may include depression, lack of appetite, mood swings, tiredness, insomnia, and restlessness.
Strong Alternatives to Steroids
According to medical associations and sports (professional) organizations, it is illegal to use anabolic steroids. Despite the ban, there are athletes who still use legal steroids to have an advantage over their competition. An athlete caught taking steroids will have to deal with health consequences as well as an end in their career. It happened in high-profile cases.
If an athlete takes anabolic steroids he or she will face the consequences, such as disqualification and serious health complications. A smart way to improve athletic performance would be eating healthy and workout hard without the extra help of anabolic steroids.
Anabolic Steroids Summary
According to a study, 3% of students in high school use unprescribed injections or steroid pills. Other studies have shown that 1-6 % of athletes misuse steroids. Males are more prone to taking steroids than females. The only way for anabolic steroids to be prescribed is if one suffers from anemia or low testosterone level. Anabolic steroids build body tissues. Also, they prompt muscle growth. Commonly known anabolic steroids are Oxandrin (oxandrolone), AndroGel (testosterone gel), Deca-Durabolin (nandrolone), Dianabol (methandrostenolone), Winstrol (stanozolol) and Equipoise (boldenone).
People in their need to have larger muscles and bulk up abuse steroids. By taking steroids people wish to improve their athletic performance. Some results of using anabolic steroids are cancer, irritability, liver damage, aggression, infertility, acne, cholesterol level changes, baldness, heart attacks, and higher blood pressure. If men abuse anabolic steroids, they will grow breasts and have smaller testicles. Taking anabolic steroids will cause women to have male characteristics.
Restlessness, mood swings, fatigue, reduced appetite and changes in sleep cycles are some of the symptoms people experience throughout withdrawal.