Male infertility an issue for many couples

May 26, 2013 11:59:45 AM PDT
Potential dads-to-be, listen up: The things you're doing right now could hurt your chances of having a kid.

Millions of couples suffer from infertility. While many people tend to think of it as being a problem with the woman, at least 50 percent of the time, it's because of the man.

"Family has always been important to both Jason and I," Anita Hansen said. "So we've always, you know, wanted to have a family of our own."

Hansen could not get pregnant.

"I was tested first through my OB-GYN and had various tests and stuff done. And then afterwards, they asked Jason if he could get tested," she said.

Dr. Sherman Silber is one of the leading infertility specialists in the country. He says a number of issues can cause male infertility.

"It can also be caused by having mumps after puberty, or by a hernia repair that the child had, or you can have an infection, an STD that can result in scarring with blockage," Silber said.

The Mayo Clinic says stress can reduce sperm. The CDC reports cocaine and marijuana can lower the count, too. From high fevers to saunas to hot tubs, overheating the testicles can hurt fertility.

And watch were you put that laptop guys. A study found they can overheat the testicles in minutes, and protective pads do not prevent it from happening.

Jason's issue was something he's had all his life.

"I was born without vas deferens tubes," he said.

An outpatient procedure helped extract his sperm. The couple got pregnant on their first round of in-vitro fertilization. Now, they're expecting twin boys.

To help boost fertility, guys can also try upping their Vitamin C. A small study published in the Journal of Medicinal Foods reports men who took 1,000 mg Vitamin C twice a day significantly improved their sperm quality.

The American Dietetic Association recommends men consume at least 90 mg of Vitamin C each day to improve their fertility.

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