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“All of this can lower your testosterone levels, which can harm sperm production,” Dr. Vij warns. If you think you may be living with alcohol use disorder, learn more about how to identify signs of addiction and pursue treatment. Both alcohol and non-medical drug use can be bad for your mental health. Some people may also use alcohol or drugs because they have mental health problems. You will not be judged if you speak to a doctor about using alcohol or drugs. If there is any reason why you’re finding it difficult to stop taking illegal or recreational drugs and you want to start trying for a baby, it’s important that you get advice and support.
Over the past 50 years, a decline in the quality of semen has been observed, possibly resulting in a reduction in male fertility. Among the factors affecting semen quality, exposure to drugs is of particular importance. It is known that drugs can be transported to the seminal plasma, which is made up of secretions from the various accessory genital glands.
Toxic effects related to tobacco, marijuana, and other drugs
“Whether it’s caused by a birth defect, infection, trauma, or vasectomy , a blockage prevents the sperm from entering the semen,” explained Dr. Potter. However, participants in that study were seeking fertility treatment, and the authors said that the results could not be applied to people in the general population. Laptops can pose an issue for sperm count when actually used on your lap. Laptops can be a problem because of the increased heat of a person’s scrotum from the computer. Regular exercise is important, but exercising so intensely that your periods are infrequent or absent can affect fertility.
Prescribed medications are frequently the “gateway” to addiction and illicit drug use. But what if you knew how badly you’re screwing your body up before it’s too late? Not to get all Daren the Lion on you, but I asked two reproductive experts—Dr.
- When it comes to alcohol and fertility, the focus is quite often on the woman.
- Epigenetic changes are not usually passed to children unless they happen in germ cells such as sperm.
- Anti-epilepsy medications, like carbamazepine, oxcarbazepine and valproate.
- A variety of recreational substances, including drugs, alcohol and tobacco, can impact your fertility.
Women who use tobacco products may also be at risk for fertility issues and delayed conception2. Coke is, of course, the legendary “boner killer,” in that it causes vasoconstriction , which leads to erectile dysfunction. It’s difficult to pinpoint what else it does, because any studies done on human beings are going to be complicated by the fact that cocaine just makes you want to party more. If you’re having trouble creating a pregnancy, see a doctor for a physical and complete medical history. They may then refer you to a urologist for a semen analysis, which tests the quantity and quality of your sperm. Medications and recreational drugs alike can impact your ability to create a pregnancy.
Fortunately, there are many safe and effective therapies that significantly improve your chances of getting pregnant. If you and your partner are struggling to have a baby, you’re not alone. In the United States, 10% to 15% of couples are infertile. Infertility is defined as not being able to get pregnant despite having frequent, unprotected sex for at least a year for most couples.
Does Alcohol Kill Sperm? And Other Fertility Facts
A large number of prescription medications can affect female fertility. These include thyroid medications and medications formental health disorders. Women who are planning to get pregnant should discuss their medications with their physician.
The study also found that fever from SARS-CoV-2 virus infection led to a reversible negative effect on sperm production. According to Dr. Shin, wet heat exposure can affect sperm for a long time. Because sperm takes so long to mature, “any interventions will usually take at least three, if not six to nine, months relationship of anger with alcohol use treatment outcome to show any benefit,” said Dr. Shin. Human testes cannot function properly to produce sperm unless they can stay cooler than the rest of the body. Specifically, the testicles should be two to four degrees Celsius (3.6 to 7.2 degrees Fahrenheit) cooler than a person’s body temperature to produce quality sperm.
When it comes to alcohol and fertility, the focus is quite often on the woman. However, wearing tight bicycle shorts for an extended period is a bad idea, said Kurt Wharton, MD, a San Francisco OB-GYN specializing in infertility. Dr. Shin recommended patients carry their phones in their briefcases rather than pockets to limit radiation exposure. But another study said to carry your mobile device anywhere besides a pocket of your pants. To potentially reduce a fever’s effect on sperm, work on ways to break the fever, such as staying cool and resting.
Schedule an appointment with your doctor to talk about any specific fertility concerns. Always talk to your pharmacist and doctor before you consider any over-the-counter vitamins or supplements. Studies also confirm alcohol exposure during pregnancy is how to avoid alcohol withdrawal harmful. Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders are one example of a side effect. If surgery cannot fix a blockage, assisted reproductive technologies may help a person with conception. Blockages that happen in ducts can prevent sperm and semen from mixing.
We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers. Manyprescription drugsare also misused substances, and they can have serious consequences on the ability to get pregnant, the pregnancy itself and the health of the baby. Commonly misused prescription drugs include opioids , stimulants and other psychotropics (medication that affects the brain’s chemistry).
One study found that individuals who were overweight were 11% more likely to have a low sperm count and 39% more likely to have no sperm in their ejaculate. Those with obesity were 42% more likely to have a low sperm count than their peers of average weight and 81% more likely to produce no sperm. A person may develop a gene-based disorder that affects their sperm count. “Chromosome abnormalities can cause severely diminished or no sperm production.” For example, one form of cystic fibrosis can cause the vas deferens not to form. Sperm count can decrease with the use of different substances. “Tobacco, alcohol, and marijuana can impair sexual function,” said Dr. Potter.
Short-term use hasn’t been shown to have a negative effect on fertility, like if you’re on a short course of opiates to control pain after surgery or a broken bone. But opioids are highly addictive, so turn to your healthcare provider with any concerns you might have about responsible short-term best books on addiction recovery use or past issues with addiction. If you’re dreaming of becoming a parent, it’s important to know that certain drugs, both legal and illegal, can have a negative effect on your fertility. For women, heavy drinking may also contribute to period problems, such as heavy, irregular or no periods.
Research isn’t yet clear on how or if methamphetamine use impacts male fertility in humans. But it has been shown to reduce sperm motility in mice and rats, which increases the likelihood of infertility. Many people recover sperm production three to 12 months after stopping anabolic steroids. But the health effects can be so serious that you shouldn’t take them unless your healthcare provider prescribes them for a specific medical condition.
“If you minimise your exposure to toxic substances then you might minimise your risks of reproductive harm.” Men should not smoke, drink or take unnecessary drugs if they are planning to become fathers to avoid causing health problems for their children, a health expert has warned. If you’re taking any of these medications and are having trouble creating a pregnancy, it’s important to see a urologist for semen testing. In most people, this effect is reversible, though it can take six to 12 months or more for sperm production to return to normal.
Women under the influence of drugs and alcohol may be more likely to put themselves in harmful situations that increase their risk of contracting STDs. These may be lifestyle factors, like using a hot tub, or factors out of a person’s control, like genetic disorders. For some factors, some ways might improve sperm count (e.g., leading a healthy lifestyle overall). But talk with a healthcare provider if you’re having issues with fertility to determine what treatment options may be best for you.
Men and women may experience significant impairment in fertility from using prescription or illicit drugs.
One study found that mobile phone use had a negative effect on sperm motility, which can have a negative impact on fertility. Here are 10 factors that may affect sperm count and how to reduce potentially reduce your risk of lowering your sperm count. Certain cancers — particularly reproductive cancers — often impair female fertility. Substance use disorders are screened for and detectable by routine lab tests in pregnant women. If drug use is detected, these results are reported to child welfare services authorities over concerns for the welfare of the child.
Children aretwo to 13 timesmore likely to be abused when a parent has a substance use disorder, so there are serious concerns about the parent’s ability to provide a safe and healthy home environment. The baby may be removed from their custody at birth because of these concerns. Paternal addiction can have a large effect on children after birth. With some medications, it can take much longer for sperm counts to increase. Testosterone supplements, for example, can have a lingering effect, taking many months or even years before sperm production resumes. Substance abuse can negatively impact the reproductive health of both sexes in a number of ways and may contribute to serious problems like sexually transmitted diseases , infertility, and cancer.
Opiates, or narcotics, include prescription medications and illegal drugs. Opiates are normally prescribed to treat severe pain when no other form of medication has helped. These substances, when misused, can be harmful to the body, especially to the reproductive system. Narcotics can prevent the body from releasing the signals that control testosterone production. This can lead to low levels of testosterone and a decrease in the quality of sperm and sperm count.
These drugs may interfere with the most common semen characteristics, potentially resulting in a male-mediated teratogenic effect, or local and systemic responses in female recipients. Therefore, it may be advisable to include, in the processes of drug development, pharmacokinetic evaluation of a drug in the semen and analysis of standard microscopic parameters of the semen. This is particularly important for drugs known to concentrate in the semen. Beside cytotoxic drugs, other drugs can impact men’s fertility through various mechanisms.
Being overweight or underweight can affect your hormone production and cause infertility. Tobacco has many negative effects on fertility, not to mention your general health and the health of a fetus. Fallopian tube damage or blockage, often caused by inflammation of the fallopian tube . This can result from pelvic inflammatory disease, which is usually caused by a sexually transmitted infection, endometriosis or adhesions. All of the steps during ovulation and fertilization need to happen correctly in order to get pregnant.
Talk with your doctor about any medications you take regularly, but don’t stop taking prescription medications without medical advice. Inone study, alcohol use was found to decrease women’s fertility by more than 50% and this effect was magnified if they also used caffeine. Even in women who didn’t drink alcohol, consuming the caffeine equivalent of more than one cup of coffee per day was found to reduce the ability to conceive.