When it comes to making a baby, everyone knows it takes two to tango, but did you know that male fertility issues account for around half of the problems a couple might experience when trying to conceive?
Starting a family can be a stressful process, and there are things that can affect your plans that you may not have considered. According to research, an estimated 18 percent of men who sought help with a fertility specialist were diagnosed with a male-related infertility. Here are some factors that can impact your fertility.
1. You’re wearing the wrong underwear: One of the keys to male fertility and quality sperm lies in keeping the temperature consistent in the scrotum. Elevated temperatures can impair sperm production and function. As much as possible, avoid wearing restrictive clothing and tight underwear. Rather stick to boxers, not briefs, and wear loose-fitting jeans and pants.
2. Skip happy hour: Drinking alcohol can lower testosterone levels, cause erectile dysfunction and decrease sperm production. Prolonged drinking can also lead to liver disease, which can impact fertility. A study suggested that drinking just five units of alcohol every week could reduce the quality of a man’s sperm, and that more alcohol correlated with weaker quality of sperm. It’s also good practice for your partner’s pregnancy, as men’s alcohol consumption can make it more difficult for a woman to stop drinking, which is vital for the health of the baby.
3. You sit with your laptop on your lap: Yes, it’s called a laptop, but men should avoid sitting with one on their laps. This is because a lot of heat is emitted from the bottom of a laptop, which could heat things up in the scrotum. Rather set your laptop up on a table – it’s also easier to work from this way.
4. Watch your weight: Being overweight or underweight can have negatively impact a man’s sperm count and can decrease his libido. The first step to improving your weight is managing your diet, so be sure to talk to your health care provider about ways to improve your nutrition intake.
5. Stress: Stress can increase abnormal sperm and reduce sperm concentration overall. Getting enough sleep, eating well, and regular exercise all help to release pent-up tension and energy in a healthy way.
6. You’re not having enough s3x: It sounds like the least obvious way to improve your sperm count, but it’s true. Ejaculating daily can increase the quality of your sperm by 12%! So, need we give you any more reason to practice baby making EVERY day?
7. Go get checked: There are many different underlying conditions that can affect male fertility, such as tumors, celiac disease and varicocele—a condition in which the veins are large and cause the testicles to overheat. If you’ve been diagnosed with any of these conditions, or are worried about any conditions you may have, talk to your doctor about what options are available for you.