Hey Fathers and soon-to-be fathers, did you know that infertility issues affect men and women equally? In fact, according to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM), in 40% of couples who are diagnosed with infertility, “the male partner is either the sole cause or a contributing cause of infertility.”
For some reason, society places the onus of fertility on the female when – in fact – women only share half the responsibility. Thus, conception is a two-way street, and there are plenty of things that men can do to increase their own chances of fertility. Make this Father’s Day the last one you spend without your own child to celebrate you.
Celebrate Father’s Day and Male Fertility Factor With These 5 Steps
The following 5 steps can be used to increase male fertility and help you create the beautiful baby you and your partner are dreaming about.
- Schedule a doctor’s appointment if you’re concerned. Are you getting a sneaking suspicion that you might have fertility issues that are preventing an easy conception? For some reason, women are the first ones to run out and seek medical advice. Men, on the other hand, tend to want to look the other way and hope for the best. We promise you that taking the bull by the horns and seeking medical advice is the most courageous, strong and masculine thing you can do. It is often the first step in whipping those sperm into shape and getting them where they need to be.
- Get serious about stress reduction. Not to stress you out, but increasing studies are showing a link between both male and female stress levels, and conception. What was once anecdotal is now being proved via salivary enzyme and hormone level testing. A Study of the Environment and Reproduction at the Kaiser Foundation Health Plan in Oakland, CA showed that men who experienced two or more stressful events in the past year had lower sperm motility (slower swimming sperm) and the morphology, or general physical shape, of the sperm was compromised as well. The more you can do to healthfully manage stress, the healthier you and your sperm will be.
- Lose those extra pounds. There are several studies that correlate over-weight and obese men with infertility. Couples in which the man is overweight and the female is within a healthy weight range tend to take longer to conceive than those in which both parties have healthy body mass indexes. Male obesity has also been linked to lower sperm count and poor sperm motility/morphology. In other words, all signs point to healthy weights equaling a healthier shot at fertility.
- Reduce exposure to chemicals. This is one of those things that makes perfect sense, until you realize that infertility-inducing chemicals are everywhere. – including DDT, dioxin, PCBs, other pesticides, plastics and industrial chemicals. In other words, from plastic storage containers to pesticides and herbicides used on our food products – or used on the food products ingested by livestock – a wealth of common environmental chemicals have been linked to male infertility. Try to avoid processed foods stored in plastic containers, use glass storage containers at home, and make the switch to organic and/or hormone-, pesticide- and antibiotic-free food products.
- Stop smoking and ease up on the drinking. ASRM says that men who smoke have higher incidences of low sperm count and the shape of their sperm is altered as well. There are a million and one reasons to quit smoking, but if your own health isn’t enough of a motivator, perhaps a better chance of conceiving a baby will be. While low- to moderate drinking is fine, heavy drinkers should try to lay off a bit because studies show that more-than-normal alcohol consumption contributes to low sperm quantity and quality.
Perhaps this Father’s Day, you can make a Father’s Day Resolution to take care of your health – physical, mental and emotional – to increase your chances of conception.
Contact RRC to schedule a consultation and learn more about potential fertility issues that are preventing you from becoming a father.
Image courtesy of Jomphong at FreeDigitalPhotos.net