Sperm, the microscopic organisms produced by the male reproductive system for the purpose of inseminating female eggs to commence the conception process, are considered healthy if they meet certain standards.
Medical professionals and reproduction experts opine that healthy sperm most capable of successful conception should have the following qualities:
- Motility – Motility, of the capacity of sperm to swim through the male and female reproductive tracts is a vital health factor. Fertility specialists suggest that at least 40 percent of an individual’s total sperm count should exhibit excellent motility.
- Shape – The healthiest sperm are thought to possess strong tails and a long, oval head. These features increase their durability and enhance swimming capacity.
- Volume – Fertility experts agree that a greater quantity equals a better chance for conception. In scientific terms, healthy semen should contain 15 million or more sperm per milliliter.
Factors That Could Affect Sperm Production and Health
Sperm quantity and overall health can be influenced by a variety of biological, environmental, and lifestyle factors.
- Hormonal Imbalances – Hormones are important chemicals that stimulate numerous bodily processes such as sperm output. When certain hormone-producing organs like the testicles, hypothalamus and thyroid are diseased or damaged by various disorders, hormonal production can decrease which, in turn, lowers the systemic output of sperm.
- Reproductive System Ailments – Illnesses impacting reproductive organs like the testicles and prostate could have a negative effect on sperm production and health. Notable examples are certain forms of cancer and infections.
- Structural Deformities – Occasionally, bodily injury or genetic deformity might precipitate damage or blockages within the reproductive system that inhibit sperm production.
- Chemical Exposure – Sometimes, chronic or excessive exposure to certain substances such as heavy metals, pesticides and industrial chemicals can have a deleterious effect on sperm count.
- Radiation Exposure – Individuals subjected to increased exposure to radiation might stand at risk of having a diminished sperm count. The exposure might occur as a result of treatments for illnesses such as cancer or from being employed in an industry where radiation is frequently utilized.
- Excessive Heat – Men who frequently spend extended durations in hot tubs or saunas might be threatening their bodies’ sperm production capacities. The high levels of heat generated by these venues could damage or kill sperm.
- Potentially Harmful Vices – Subjects who repeatedly engage in potential sperm-harming actions like cigarette-smoking, excessive alcohol consumption and illicit drug use could decrease their sperm count.
- Obesity – Being grossly overweight can damage sperm directly and trigger sperm-harming hormonal alterations.
- Occupational Hazards – Individuals who sit for extended durations such as office workers, truck operators and airline crews might be at increased risk of experiencing diminished sperm production.
- Mental or Emotional Stress – Prolonged times of stress could trigger sperm-threatening hormonal problems.
Potential Treatment Methods
The specific method a healthcare professional might employ will depend on the exact underlying factor. Should the problem be precipitated by some type of illness, remediating the condition might increase sperm production.
Fortunately, however, there are certain natural actions that individuals can take that might also produce favorable results:
- Cease Potentially Unhealthy Vices – Sperm production might be quickly boosted by the reduction or complete cessation of potentially harmful vices like drinking, using drugs or smoking.
- Limit Exposure to Environmental Toxins – Reducing one’s exposure to as many toxins, pollutants and allergens as possible might reduce incidents of diminished sperm counts.
- Consume a Healthy Diet – Nutrients like folate, vitamin D and calcium have been known to bolster sperm production. Additionally, men are encouraged to consume foods rich in antioxidants. These substances are powerful nutrients that prevent and counteract the impacts of systemic inflammation, which could precipitate reproductive system-damaging ailments.
- Be Cognizant of Certain Prescription Medications’ Effects – Some drugs commonly prescribed to treat numerous conditions might precipitate unhealthy sperm or lessen sperm production. Specific drugs include certain antibiotics, antidepressants, steroids and anti-inflammatory preparations. Individuals who use these drugs should consider discussing alternative therapeutic protocols with their doctors.
- Obtain Enough Rest – Sleep is critical to the general health and regeneration of the reproductive system. Additionally, adequate sleep is necessary for optimal systemic hormonal concentrations.
- Exercise – Scientific studies have concluded that individuals with normal body mass indexes, or BMI, often have much higher sperm counts than overweight subjects.