What leads to infertility in men?
Falling pregnant often takes quite a bit of time so don’t get discouraged if it isn’t happening right away for you. However, if you and your partner have been trying for a baby with no success, you might be worried that there’s something wrong with your sperm. Many men and women experience fertility problems that can be caused by several different factors, some of which can be treated whilst others cannot. It’s even possible to have fertility struggles without any obvious cause.
When it comes to healthy sperm, there are three factors that come into play: quantity, motility, and structure (or morphology).
Quantity: Men with ejaculation that has at least 15 million sperm per milliliter are likely to be fertile. The fewer sperm you have in your ejaculate, the harder it will be for your partner’s egg to become fertilized.
Motility: Sperm must be able to successfully swim through a woman’s reproductive system to reach an egg for fertilization. At least 40% of your sperm needs to be moving for you to be considered fertile.
Structure (morphology): Sperm should have oval heads and long tails to help them move. If sperm is misshapen, it’s less likely to be able to function the way it’s supposed to.
What Causes Unhealthy Sperm and Infertility?
Many medical conditions can impact a man’s sperm health and fertility as some medications. Lifestyle factors can have a major impact as well. Sometimes, however, there is no apparent cause at all or it could be a combination of causes.
STIs like gonorrhoea and chlamydia
Undergoing chemotherapy or other cancer treatment
Eating a poor diet
Excessive alcohol consumption
Exposure to toxins like pesticides and lead
Improving Sperm Health
The first thing you should do to improve your fertility is to give up cigarettes, cut back on your alcohol consumption, and avoid any illicit drugs. Eat a diet rich in fruit, veg, and nutrients so that your body can function at its best. Be sure to get enough exercise as well because the more you move, the healthier you and your sperm will be.
Heat might also be preventing you from having a higher sperm concentration. Find ways to keep cool (especially down there) to prevent the excessive scrotal temperature from affecting sperm production. Don’t sit for long periods of time, avoid saunas and hot tubs, and use a lapdesk for your laptop.
You should also wear loose-fitting clothing, especially when it comes to underwear. In fact, your specific type of underwear might be the source of your problem. Tight underwear and/or synthetic underwear inhibit circulation around your genitals so opt for cotton boxer shorts instead.
Finally, when you are trying for a baby you might be having sex much more frequently than usual. Having frequent sex (including masturbation) could be reducing your sperm count so be mindful of your sexual activity.
Being impotent is different than being invertible, however, if you have erectile dysfunction you’ll most likely struggle with getting your partner pregnant. For sperm to reach your partner’s eggs, you need to have an erection strong enough for penetration and ejaculation.
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