Some people still think that fertility is only a woman’s problem. Studies show that in 20% of infertile couples, the problem is with the male partner. Infertility in a man can be the only reason that a couple cannot conceive, but it can also add to the difficulties caused by infertility in a woman. This is why it’s important that men get tested for fertility as well as women. Some men tend to put off being tested because of embarrassment, but early testing can spare them and their partners a great deal of discomfort and expense.
Reasons for Male Infertility
There are various reasons for male infertility. Some are caused by physical problems, preventing the sperm from being ejaculated normally; others affect the quality and production of the sperm itself.
Other possible male fertility problems include:
- Sexually Transmitted Diseases or Other Infections – Genital infections such as gonorrhoea and chlamydia can cause infertility in men. This can often be resolved by treating the infection.
- Birth Defects, Blockages or Physical Damage – Some men are born with blockages in parts of the testicle or other abnormalities which prevent sperm from getting into the semen. Physical trauma to the prostate, testicles and urethra can also result in fertility problems.
- Genetic Diseases – Although rare, genetic illnesses such as chromosomal disorders or cystic fibrosis can cause infertility.
- Hormonal Problems – Certain hormonal imbalances in the thyroid and pituitary glands can cause infertility. Your doctor can suggest treatment with medication.
- Sexual Problems – Erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation can have an effect on fertility. Other physical problems such as high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol and heart disease can also cause erectile dysfunction.
Other Lifestyle Factors
There are also some activities that might cause infertility in men:
- Excessive Exercise – Studies have shown that over exercising might lead to the release of too many steroid hormones which can affect fertility.
- Stress – Stress affects both men and women’s infertility.
- Obesity – Just like with women, obesity in men can also affect fertility.
- Drug Use – Taking of steroids, cocaine, marijuana, drinking alcohol, and smoking can reduce a man’s sperm counts.
- Exposure to Environmental Hazards – Toxins, lead, radiation, pesticides, heavy metals, mercury and other radioactive substances may affect fertility.
- Heat – High temperatures in the testicles could reduce the production of sperm. High heat could result from wearing tight-fitting clothes, frequent bike riding, or even by taking too many saunas or hot baths.
Getting Pregnant with Male Infertility
If you have been diagnosed with infertility, it is a must that you talk to your doctor about any behavioural changes you can make that might help you increase your chances of conceiving. Setup an appointment with Dr. Fay Weisberg today.