Improving Male Fertility
Even though a couple has been trying for several months to conceive, there may not be any signs of pregnancy on the horizon. It may be too early for testing and evaluation but there is a desire to be proactive on the part of the man. Male fertility is dependent upon the quality and quantity of sperm and there are a number of things that can affect either of these components.
The Triad Of Factors For Healthy Sperm
In order for sperm to be considered healthy, one consideration is the quantity of sperm produced. If a man has more than 20 million sperm per millilitre of semen, he is considered fertile. Of the millions of sperm ejaculated in the semen, only about 200 actually reach the egg in the woman's fallopian tube. However, it only takes one to make a baby!
It is not just quantity that counts. Quality is equally important and many researchers are putting more emphasis on the quality of sperm than the actual quantity. Quality includes morphology (sperm shape and structure). If more than one-third of the sperm are normal in shape and structure, a man is likely to be fertile. The last part of this triad is motility. In order to reach the egg, the sperm have to be able to swim. The semen will only get the sperm so far and then the sperm must swim upstream to reach the egg. If at least half of the sperm are moving, the man is considered fertile.
What's A Guy To Do?
In order to contribute to the process by producing high-quality sperm, a man can do a number of things. Taking a multivitamin every day provides trace nutrients that are essential for optimal sperm production and function. Minerals such as selenium, zinc and folic acid can be found in a good multivitamin. He can add to the nutrient intake by eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. These types of foods are very high in antioxidants, which can also contribute to sperm health.
Everyone knows that stress is damaging to the body. In the case of fertility, stress may interfere with certain hormones necessary for the production of sperm. Stress can also decrease sexual drive and function. Exercise is good for the entire body, but overdoing it can be counter-productive to the production of sperm. Moderate exercise keeps hormone levels at a good balance. When body fat is too high or too low, sperm production is affected through the disruption of reproductive hormones. By maintaining a healthy body weight, sperm production is boosted.
Sometimes It Takes A Helping Hand
Adopting healthy lifestyle practices help to preserve a man's fertility. This, in turn, may improve the chances of conceiving a child. Sometimes, even the healthiest of lifestyles does not allow conception to take place. If, after one year of trying to conceive without success, it may be time to consider a visit to a fertility specialist who can identify the cause of the problem and provide treatment to help the couple fulfill their hearts' desire.