What is male infertility?
Ifertility defines as a couples’ inability to become pregnant after a year of regular and unprotected sex. According to reports, an estimated 15% of couples in North America and Europe are grappling with infertility.
Many couples that have long hoped to become parents often find themselves struggling to reproduce. Infertility is the main reason they have been unable to have children. For decades, Indian society has held women accountable for fertility problems. But today, statistics show us that men too are equally responsible for it. Studies have shown that men are the cause of one-third of infertility cases.
Infertility in men is defined as the inability of a man to get a fertile female pregnant after having frequent and unprotected intercourse for a year.
At some point in life, all men may be forced to assess their ability to reproduce. But today, even younger men find themselves grappling with these questions.
The stress of work pressure and maintaining a particular lifestyle is taking its toll on men and causing several health issues. Infertility is one of them. Various other causes may lead to infertility in men, including low testosterone and obesity, to name a few.
What causes male infertility?
Low sperm count regarded as one of the leading causes of male infertility. However, low sperm count only affects 1% of every men and 10 to 15% of infertile men. These are the many other causes of male infertility:
As men age, achieving pleasure in sexual intercourse becomes difficult, and at times, painful. Which is why age can be a cause of infertility?
Obesity overweight men can have poor sperm quality as compared to men of healthy weight. Being overweight or obese can also cause hormonal changes that reduce fertility and make men less interested in sex. Men who are very overweight are also more likely to have problems getting an erection.
It is an abnormal enlargement of the spermatic veins that carry blood from testicles to the abdomen. This abnormal enlargement produces a one-way valve in the veins that causes the backflow of blood from the abdomen to the scrotum as a result of which an unreceptive environment for the sperms is created. This reduces the sperm count, disturbs the sperm morphology and finally leads to infertility.
Stress can cause infertility. Several men take on a lot of work and different capacities to fulfill dreams for their family, which may consider undue pressure for them and affect their sexual performance.
Hormonal problems Low levels of testosterone, a hormone produced by the testicles, can also be a cause of infertility.
Injury or work situation Testicular injury can cause infertility in men. Also, exposure to high temperature, hazardous chemicals, or radiation may impact testosterone production ability.
Diagnosing infertility in men Treatment of infertility is a significant challenge.
To treat infertility in men, it is important to first diagnose its cause. Here are various methods of diagnosis that a health care professional can use to determine the exact condition:
- Physical examination and medical history this is the first step in determining fertility status. The physician may examine your genitals and question you about inherited conditions, health problems, injuries, surgeries and illnesses that may affect fertility.
- Semen analysis A semen analysis testis is also done to determine infertility in men. Ejaculated semen can collect in a particular container, and the sperm can examine for abnormalities in shape (morphology) and movement (motility). If the doctor finds your sperm quality healthy, he/she may recommend your partner tested before asking you to undergo any more infertility tests.
- Testicular biopsy using a needle, your doctor will perform a testicular biopsy. The results of the test can tell if sperm production is normal or not. Treatment for male infertility, there are numerous ways in which infertility in men can treat. These include:
- Eating healthy Try to add plenty of fruits and vegetables to your diet, as these are rich in antioxidants and may help improve sperm health.
- Watch your weight shedding the pounds will help improve sperm count and movement.
- Treating infections: various antibiotics are available to treat infections but these medications do not always re-establish fertility.
- Yoga and meditation To treat infertility in men, doctors recommend meditation and yoga as both are good for mental relaxation.
- Frequency of intercourse Couples is advised to increase the frequency of sexual intercourse as it may improve their chances of conceiving.
- Surgery Procedures that unblock tubes that have damaged due to infections, tract blockages, and varicocele, can also reverse infertility in men.
- In-Vitro Fertilization IVF is an effective but expensive treatment for conceiving an egg that is fertilized by sperm outside a woman’s body. If men want this treatment to work effectively for them, they have to quit smoking.
Conclusion while infertility is a major setback for couples, advancements in medical science offer renewed hope. To schedule an appointment with a fertility specialist and tackle your infertility problem head-on.