Fertility series: It takes two

Amanda Roe: Acupuncture and Clinical Hypnotherapist.
Call 087 6331898
Email: amanda@marketstclinic.com

Women understandably feel under a lot of pressure when trying to conceive. With age a significant factor, stress can feel intense as the months and years go by. A woman may or may not be in a relationship but either way, the internal chatter of what is wrong with me and my body can feel lonely.  

What women often don’t realise is that reasons preventing conception are actually 33 per cent female related, 33 per cent male related, and 33 per cent male and female related…. So it is important to be in this together to identify any issues as soon as possible. 

Male fertility factors are easier to influence and optimise than female factors. Getting these checked as early as possible can resolve 50 per cent of possible reasons for unexplained infertility naturally within about three months. 

Sperm analysis is one of the cheapest and least invasive fertility investigates. Understandably men can feel intimidated that this test is assessing there virility, but I would encourage men to see this more as a check up, a snapshot in time that gives an enormous amount of information, not only reflecting fertility health, but it also gives a good representation of his current health. 

Then if you’re not happy with the results, it’s surprisingly easy to turn this around. Stress, diet, medication, smoking, illness, high fever and environmental toxins you’re exposed to when sperm is being produced and even the amount of time it is waiting prior to ejaculation will affect quality. 

New sperm are created all the time with the stages of development taking about nine weeks from start to finish. The gonads hang outside the body and this lower body temperature is important. Sperm then only have a life span of two to five days in the gonads before they start to deteriorate. 

When you get a sperm analysis, it is important to get the full report including the pH, volume, concentration, count, motility and morphology ie. the form and structure of the sperm. 

Sperm are particularly sensitive to oxidative stress, which damages the membrane of the sperm, affects sperm motility, morphology, and DNA fragmentation. 

If markers are low a fertility clinic will offer an Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) where a single sperm is picked and injected directly into an egg. 

Sounds straightforward but this is ultimately expensive and invasive for women, as eggs need to be harvested, fertilised, possibly frozen and then implanted without any guarantee.  

If sperm markers are low, it is possible to tailor an approach that will naturally improve all aspects of future sperm production in as quickly as three months .

Four things men can start doing today that will help are: 

• Avoid tight underwear and cycling a lot as pressure on the testicles reduces sperm motility.

• Opt for a swim in the sea over a hot tub or sauna.

• Take a good quality Vitamin C and E

• Don’t drink during her fertile window, cause when you’re drunk, your sperm is too!

If you’re looking for someone to support you on your fertility journey, Amanda Roe is a Clinical Hypnotherapist and Acupuncturist. She uses a range of holistic therapies including guidance around food to improve fertility, emotional and mental health and support natural recover from trauma, eating disorders and other mind/body illness. For more information or to book a consultation visit www.roehealth.ie or call/text Amanda on: 087 633 1898.

WCP Staff

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