Despite stereotypes about women being more passionate about building families (“maternal instincts”), there are many men who deeply want to be fathers.
Many men wonder whether their “swimmers are drowning” or in the “shallow end of the gene pool.” Fortunately testing for counts is relatively easy, where a semen analysis can give a quick result as to whether or not there is a meaningful issue with male fertility.
As long as there are reasonable sperm counts and a couple can have unprotected relations approximately every three days around the middle of the cycle, the likelihood that male factor is driving sub-fertility is low.
When counts are low, the question is what can be done to improve them. A thorough evaluation can identify many causes. Extremes of weight (too thin or too heavy) can affect sperm production. High levels of heat can also be important. This can be found in HVAC workers in hot attics, men with larger thighs who are long distance truck drivers, hot tub users, and more. Testosterone use is increasingly common, which can lower sperm counts from 80,000,000 to undetectable fairly quickly.
However, several causes for low to no counts are also invisible. For example, some men are born without part of the vas deferens, so they are effectively born with a vasectomy. Others have testes that simply don’t make sperm and some actually are missing DNA on the Y chromosome that guides sperm production. These are causes that can’t be fixed through a “healthier lifestyle.”
Many men think they know they are fertile simply because they “own the equipment” which is much like saying that if you have a heart, you are therefore a cardiologist. If things aren’t working, where a couple has had unprotected relations for a year without becoming pregnant, it is often easier just to have a specialist quickly figure it out for you. At Positive Steps Fertility, we routinely help couples become pregnant quickly and affordably. We hope to help you on your journey and happy Father’s Day!
Dr. Preston Parry
From simple explanations, to high tech solutions, or a simply a fresh perspective if what you’ve been doing on your own or with a doctor hasn’t worked, come see us in our Monroe, Madison, Starkville or Hattiesburg MS offices.
Hope, understanding, and solutions are real and we see successes all the time!