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Infertility Stresses Men Too, According to New Research

Stress does affect women who are infertile quite similar to cancer patients, but not much has been focused upon male stress infertility. Even men also undergo stress if the couple is not able to conceive.

  • The problem arises when the men are diagnosed with having an abnormal semen analysis.
  • Men do suffer from moderate levels of stress as well as a decline in sexual confidence and reduced erectile function.
  • Finally, a staple of the diagnosis and treatment of male infertility is semen collection as well as analysis. There is a lot of stress associated with an activity. They do report a decline in libido which does affect them emotionally.
  • Men also suffer from health issues such as stress with a number of health problems that include heart disease, asthma, obesity as well as depression. Stress can reduce sperm and semen quality, which can cause complications regarding male fertility.
  • The main cause of male infertility is no doubt sperm abnormalities that include low sperm production or misshapen or immobile sperm. Medical conditions, such as undescended testicles or ejaculation problems can also lead to sperm abnormalities, as well as health and lifestyle factors.
  • Lots of studies have been conducted regarding the effect of stress on male fertility.
  • Life stress ‘led to lower semen quality’
  • Men who have indeed experienced two or more stressful life events in the past year show lower sperm quality than men who did not experience any stressful life events.
  • Researchers have focused upon semen concentration and sperm shape (morphology) and movement (motility) in each sample.

The researchers have noticed that men who experienced two or more stressful life events in the past year had a lower percentage of sperm motility and a lower percentage of sperm of normal morphology, as compared to men who did not experience any stressful life events. They observed stress factors influencing semen quality, such as age, other health problems and history of reproductive health problems.

Although workplace stress did not actually directly affect semen quality in the men, the researchers did find job strains had lower levels of the hormone testosterone in their semen, which can, in fact, affect reproductive health.

Also, more e levels of stress were experienced by men who were unemployed and had lower semen quality than those who were employed.

How can stress affect semen quality?

Although the researchers are unable to pinpoint exactly how stress affects the quality of semen, they do present some theories.

Stress can activate the release of glucocorticoids – steroid hormones that do affect the metabolism of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins – that could reduce testosterone levels and sperm production.

Stress can trigger off oxidative stress which is physiological stress on the body that is caused by damage from un-neutralized free radicals which has been associated with semen quality as well as fertility.

Stress does influence health. The reproductive health of men can also be affected by their social environment. More awareness needs to be created with regard to the stress effect on male fertility. Men also undergo a difficult phase when they are unable to help in conceiving process.

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