What are steroids?
The need for greater muscle strength and power more than humanly natural has turned some people to the use of anabolic-androgenic steroids, anabolic referring to growth enhancement and androgenic referring to male sex characteristic development. Anabolic-androgenic steroids represent a synthetic form of the primary male sex hormone testosterone, and when taken they affect your muscle, hair growth, bones, liver, kidneys, and reproductive and nervous systems.
Gaining muscle mass can be done naturally, through a strict diet and lots of workouts, which is the hard way, or you can inject steroids and gain a lot of muscle mass the easy way, although bear in mind this way is paved with a lot of risk to your health. However, synthetic steroids were invented with the noble cause to help people with various diseases and conditions, like certain types of anemia, some deficiencies of natural testosterone, and autoimmune diseases, where corticosteroids are prescribed to the patients. However, corticosteroids and anabolic-androgenic steroids have different characteristics and do not come with the same harmful effect on your body.
How are steroids used?
They are many types of napsgear steroids, all called with different names: Anadrol, Oxandrin, Dianabol, equipoise, and they all can be taken either orally, injected with hypodermic needles, as pellets injected under the skin, or as skin gels and creams. Usually, users inject them in their bodies, because it is the fastest way to get them to their muscles, and usually they inject doses 10 to 100 times higher than the amount normally prescribed by doctors.
Users often take more than one kind of steroid, a process called stacking, giving faster results, increasing the dosage weekly and then decreasing the dosage at half-time, a process called cycling. The combination of both is called pyramiding, giving the wrong perception that this is a “safe” way to take steroids, which has been proven wrong by many studies.
What are the benefits of using steroids?
The general perception of steroids is that they are taken as a means to increase muscle and enhance performance in the gym, and although they are mainly misused this way, steroids do have other applications too. The main benefits can be listed as follows:
– Treating delayed puberty,
– Treating some conditions that cause muscle loss (AIDS, cancer),
– Increase muscle strength and power,
– Decrease body fat,
– Enhance endurance and recovery from the workout as well as injuries,
– Increase in muscle mass,
– Increased red blood cell production.
Athletes do use steroids, to get ahead of their competition, gaining a 5-20% increase in strength and endurance. Athletes use PEDs, or performance-enhancing drugs, which are normally forbidden by many sporting federations for obvious reasons (nothing can be more non-sportier), but some athletes do take the risk to gain better results.
What are the possible side-effects of using steroids?
This list is way longer than the previous, and this is one of the reasons why anabolic-androgenic steroids are illegal if not prescribed, and even a prescription for a steroid is very rare.
The side effects of steroids usage are many and they vary from mild to severe, depending on the length of the period of usage and the quantity of intake. A genetic factor is also included, some users respond better than others do. The most common side effects are mentioned below:
- Increased risk of heart disease – the combination of anabolic-androgenic steroids and workout at the gym or extensive sports activities can increase the size of the left ventricle of your heart and can increase your blood pressure. The risk is increased due to the increased level of HDL (high-density lipoprotein), or good cholesterol, and LDL (low-density lipoprotein), or bad cholesterol.
- Increased risk of liver damage – steroids can cause massive liver damage, causing tumors and can also cause a rare condition, peliosis hepatis, which is a condition where cysts filled with blood are formed in the liver. Their rupture can cause internal bleeding and possible death.
- Infections – needle sharing and use of non-sterile needles are the number one cause of infections among steroid users. Also, steroids suppress the immune system, easing the way of the infection. Also, bear in mind that a lot of steroids are produced in illegal labs where not all necessary standards are fulfilled.
- Aggressive behavior – steroids have been known to increase aggression and impulsivity in male adults and teenagers.
- Mentally addictive – although steroids are not classified as physically addictive, long usage can lead to mental addiction that further leads to dependence. Mental addiction is the need to always have a muscular physique, and steroids offer that continuously.
- Hormone imbalance – hormonal balance is very important, especially for teens. The use of steroids mixes up gender hormones, and causes shrunken testicles and reduced sperm count in boys, and can also cause gynecomastia, a condition causing enlarged breasts in men. Steroids cause girls to have a more masculine body, growing more hair and deepening their voice. Also, hormonal imbalance may accelerate bone growth, so misuse by adolescents who haven’t reached growth spurt, steroids can cause premature aging of the bones and restrict growth.
- May cause baldness, for the same reasons as mentioned above.
- Continuous use of steroids can cause more severe psychological issues, mood swings, paranoia, manic behavior, and even hallucinations and delusions.
- Skin changes – steroid use causes acne, hair loss, and cysts and can cause oily hair and skin. Because of liver issues caused by prolonged usage, steroids also cause jaundice, yellowing of the skin and eyes.
Quitting steroid use leads to withdrawal symptoms, which include fatigue, depression, restlessness, insomnia, and reduced sex drive. Managing the symptoms should be monitored by your physician because the psychological issues occurred b the process of withdrawal can lead to other physical issues, which can lead to serious complications.