Infection and Infertility
Blood in Semen
Male Infertility and Obesity
Immunology Of Male Infertility
Male Biological Clock
Understanding Semen Analysis
Increase Male Fertility
Evaluation of Male Infertility
Male Reproductive Physiology
In vitro fertilization tips
What is ICSI?
pre-determining sex of your child
Pus in Semen
Increase Male Fertility
Roughly 35% of couples who have problems conceiving discover it is the man that has fertility problems and are looking at ways to increase male fertility.
Sperm counts have fallen by almost a third in the last 10 years. The main factors that seem to make a damaging dent on the man’s sperm count are an increase in drug use, alcohol consumption, smoking and an increase in obesity.
In isolation these factors are bad enough, but when two or more of these causes are combined it leads to a rapid decline in the number and quality of sperm.
Tips To Improve Male Fertility
But don’t despair! If you’re thinking of conceiving, here are some quick and easy tips for turning yourself into a literal sperm making machine.
- Eat brazil nuts – Brazil nuts are rich in selenium, a mineral that seems to help boost sperm production and improve their swimming ability.
- Eat tomatoes – Research suggests that lycopene, a nutrient found in tomatoes, helps in the production of healthy, agile sperm.
- Deal with your stress – Stress leads to the release of adrenalin and other hormones which can restrict blood flow to the testes and inhibit sperm production. It also leads to the release of chemical by-products called free radicals, which lead to sperm damage. Take an anti-oxidant supplement with zinc, selenium and vitamin C.
- Take vitamins – Studies show that supplementing with vitamin C can assist in the making of properly functioning sperm, and reduce their tendency to clump together (agglutinate). 1,000mg of vitamin C each day should be enough to help men make top seed. High doses of zinc appear to help boost levels of testosterone in men with low levels of this hormone, and may bring substantial improvements in sperm numbers. A zinc supplement of 50-100mg should be taken each day (balanced with 3-6mg of copper per day to prevent copper deficiency) for three months. Like zinc, Korean ginseng appears to have the ability to enhance both testosterone and sperm levels. About 500mg of standardised extract should be taken each day for three months.
- Eat healthy fats – Healthy fats, known as essential fatty acids (EFAs), appear to be important ingredients in the manufacture of sperm. The Total EFA is a supplement that contains a range of EFAs that may help boost sperm numbers in time.
- Go organic – Declining sperm counts could be related to xenoestrogens, hormone-like chemical pollutants that come from a variety of sources, including agrochemical residues. A shift towards more organic foods in the diet will help to reduce exposure to these fertility-sapping chemicals.
- Stay cool – Testicles should remain cooler than the rest of the body, so tight Y-fronts, hot baths and high central heating temperatures are a no-no. Men are also advised to walk about after sitting at a computer to help the airflow around the testes.
- Avoid smoking – Tobacco smoke contains chemicals that weaken sperm function and deplete the anti-oxidants, especially vitamin C, that neutralise damaging free radicals. Our tip? Start a new smoke-free lifestyle to help boost your sperm count.
- Avoid recreational drugs – Cocaine, for example, affects sperm motility and could prevent fertilisation. Cannabis leads to a low sperm count and an increase in abnormal sperm. Smoking one joint lowers testosterone levels for up to 36 hours. Avoid muscle-building drugs, too. Anabolic steroids, taken by some athletes to increase muscle size, and improve strength and endurance, may boost sex drive and sexual performance in the short term. But in the long term, they have the opposite effect and can cause a 25 per cent drop in sperm count
- Reduce or completely eliminate alcohol. Alcohol can effect the production of normally developed, healthy sperm.
- Keep your testicles cool. Excessive exercise, tight underwear, hot tubs or anything that raises the temperature of the scrotum should be avoided.
- Stop using anabolic steroids. A major cause of infertility, anabolic steroids can permanently shrink the testes and cause infertility.
Stock up on vitamin C and zinc. Taking vitamin and zinc supplements has been shown to increase sperm mobility and reproductive health in general.
- Ask your doctor if any antibiotic you are taking could effect sperm count and motility. Change the antibiotic if you are trying to conceive.
- Stay away from pesticides, heavy metals, radiation, solvents and other environmental poisons.
- Eat well and get proper nutrition. Bad eating habits may contribute to infertility.
- Have sex with your partner several times a day. New research suggests that rather than waiting several days to have intercourse, daily sex can increase the chances of conception.
- Relax. Stress plays an important role in infertility in men and women so find ways to relax, hopefully with your partner.
- The likelihood of a woman becoming pregnant is much higher when you have intercourse in the three days immediately leading up to and including ovulation. Some experts call these three days the “fertile window.” You can determine when a woman ovulates either by using a basal temperature chart, or with an over-the-counter ovulation predictor kit.
The frequency of intercourse during the fertile window generally doesn’t matter. Although earlier studies seemed to show that several days of abstinence might increase sperm counts, more recent findings indicate that more frequent intercourse may in fact be better.
Contrary to popular belief there is no scientific evidence of a “best position” for conception. However, having the woman stay in bed with her hips elevated for half an hour after intercourse may be helpful.
Fertility Health For Men
Taking Charge of Your Fertility
When a couple experiences problems trying to conceive, it is just as likely to be due to male problems as it is to female problems. Causes of male infertility are numerous but there are some things that a man can do to help increase his chances of having a child.
Live Long and Prosper
Diet and exercise are important factors behind a person’s quality of health. A diet of fast food, processed food, and just plain junk food that is all too common these days does not provide you with the nutrients that you need to stay healthy.
Eating lots of fruits and vegetables along with low-fat dairy and protein gives your body the vitamins it needs to function properly, which includes the production of sperm. Additionally, eating those fatty, high calorie foods is more likely to lead to being overweight and even obese, which recent studies have shown to be a factor in male infertility.
In combination with improving their diet, reducing stress and exercising more, men are also turning to fertility supplements for help. Made of all-natural ingredients, supplements can increase sperm motility and sperm count, help to strengthen the male reproductive system plus increase sex drive and virility.
Regular exercise (at least three times a week for at least 30 minutes each time) can help you maintain your weight and encourages optimal health. For those that are overweight or obese, losing weight will not only help your body produce healthier sperm, but it can also improve the quality of your sex life. And having a better sex life is a sure fire way to get your partner pregnant.
But before you start having visions of being the next Body Builder Champion, be realistic in your exercise. Bulking up through the use of steroids may make you look like Superman but it will also make you impotent, which is probably why Superman never had any children. You may also want to avoid using the sauna after your workout. Prolonged exposure to heat can interfere with your ability to produce sperm.
Cut Out Smoking; Cut Down On Drinking
Other lifestyle factors that affect the quality of a man’s sperm include cigarettes and alcohol consumption. Just as women must cut out these vices when they are trying to conceive, so must men. Compared to a non-smoker, a man who smokes has a lower sperm count and a greater number of misshapen sperm, neither of which is very conducive to creating a child. Additionally, heavy or binge drinking (four or more alcoholic drinks in one evening) can seriously affect your ability to produce quality sperm. Recreational drug use should also be cut out of your life as drugs like marijuana can kill off your sperm.
And don’t think that it is just what you put into your mouth that will affect your sperm. Rogaine may give you the hope of having a full head of hair again some day but it will also interfere with your sperm quality. You may want to put off getting your hair back while you and your partner are trying to conceive. Other environmental toxins, like pesticides, can also damage your sperm, so try to limit your exposure to them.
A Historical Impact
Looking back over the years, have there been other men in your family that have experienced fertility problems? If so, then it may not be so unusual that you are experiencing difficulty getting pregnant with your partner as some male fertility problems may be genetic. If there have never been any problems, then take another trip down memory lane and try to remember if you ever had any surgery done, specifically to your groin or abdominal areas. Having surgery can produce scar tissue on your reproductive organs, which can block sperm from traveling along their desired path. The surgery may have even damaged parts of your reproductive system, making it difficult for you to produce sperm.
If you have any health problems, then this could be the source of your fertility problems. In some instances, it is the health issue itself that causes infertility, while in other cases it is the medication used to treat the issue that hinders the production or quality of sperm. Additionally, past illnesses, like mumps, may have actually shrunk your testicles, which in turn, slows down the production of sperm.
Visiting The Doctor
When you and your partner have been trying unsuccessfully to conceive for a year, it is probably time to book an appointment with an infertility specialist. If your partner is over 40, then make that appointment after trying for six months. Along with testing your partner, the fertility specialist will analyze the quality of your sperm, evaluating the volume of your ejaculation as well as the density, shape and motility of the sperm.
For some men, it can be difficult to admit they have a fertility problem. To them, their virility is a sign of their masculinity. However, it is important to remember that many couples experience fertility problems at some point. Seeing a specialist can help you identify just what is wrong and get you started on solving the problem
A Man’s Fertility
8 Ways to Improve Male Fertility
Having a less-than-optimal sperm count isn’t the end of the world. While conceiving may be a little more difficult, there are ways to improve your fertility before seeking expensive treatments. Hopeful dads can take these steps to improve their chances of making a baby:
1. Limit or discontinue all drugs (OTC, prescription and “street” drugs).
Certain ulcer medications and steroids can suppress sperm production, and recreational drugs like tobacco, alcohol and marijuana can have the same effect.
2. Avoid heating up the testicles.
Saunas, hot tubs and hot showers (if longer than 30 minutes) can decrease your sperm count. Heating pads and electric blankets should also be avoided.
3. Wear boxers, not briefs.
It makes sense to wear loose-fitting underwear if you are trying to keep the temperature of your testicles down. If they are pulled up to your body, they will be warmer than if they hang away from you.
4. Limit your time on the bicycle.
If you have been diagnosed with a low sperm count, limit your bike riding time. The friction and jostling can cause temperature rises and possible injury.
5. Eat a good diet and get enough zinc.
Studies have shown that some men with a zinc deficiency have a lowered sperm count.
6. Limit intercourse.
Limit sex to every other day instead of every day during your partner’s fertile cycle. While it is not necessary for every couple to follow this rule, men who are known to have lower sperm counts should not be releasing semen every day because they need a chance to replenish their already low supply.
7. Refrain from oral sex.
Saliva can actually kill sperm. Similarly, most lubricants can also kill sperm and should be avoided.
8. Get tested for lead and other chemicals.
If you work in a contaminated industrialized area, you should get tested for lead and other chemicals. Lead, chromium, ethylene glycol ethers and other chemicals can decrease sperm count and cause abnormal sperm.
While following these recommendations won’t guarantee success, it will give you a head start on your journey to conception. Chances are, many infertility specialists will recommend that you take these steps before they attempt to treat your low sperm count.