Men’s Health Week (NMHW), June 10-16, promotes healthy habits in men, and raises awareness about actions you can take now to prevent devastating health problems down the road.
Infertility is of particular concern to reproductive endocrinologists specializing in female and male infertility. Texas Fertility Center’s founding partner, Dr. Thomas C. Vaughn, shares his tips for protecting and preserving fertility, and boosting sperm health in men.
Maintain a healthful lifestyle. It will come as no surprise that smoking cigarettes or marijuana; drinking to excess; and taking anabolic steroids or illegal substances affect fertility in men. Men produce sperm over a lifetime, with a 74-108 day process to create sperm ejaculated during sex. Curbing unhealthy habits now can have a positive impact on attempts to get pregnant by the end of the summer!
Keep it cool this summer. It’s impossible to avoid steamy summer temperatures around Austin and Round Rock, but easy to say no to saunas, hot tubs and steam rooms. Sperm are produced in the testicles, which naturally moderate temperature by moving closer to the body for warmth, and away to cool things off. Elevating scrotal temperature even a fraction of a degree can temporarily shut down the sperm factory.
Eat fertility-friendly foods. A diet rich in antioxidants, particularly vitamins A and C, has been shown to improve sperm count and movement.* Try Austin’s farmers market foods like guavas, bell peppers, dark, leafy greens, cantaloupe and sweet potatoes this summer.
Practice safe sex. An estimated 2.8 million cases of chlamydia and 718,000 cases of gonorrhea occur annually in the United States, leading to infertility in many cases. Protect yourself and your partner from sexually transmitted diseases (STD) by using a condom and seeing a doctor for annual checkups.
See a fertility specialist. If you have been trying for more than a year to get pregnant, contact a reproductive endocrinologist (fertility specialist) for a semen analysis.
Men’s Health Week leads up to Father’s Day, a holiday that 1 in 7 American couples with infertility desperately hope to celebrate next year. Knowing the facts about male infertility risk factors, and partnering with a fertility specialist when you suspect there is a problem, will help increase your chances for getting pregnant.