Infertility in today’s times is attached to a lot of stigmas and has many myths attached to it. The stereotypical culture and orthodox mentality often relate infertility to be a women’s problem. However, the truth lies in the fact that both the partners are equally responsible for the conception of the baby. Even if the mother carries the baby, there can be shortfalls in either of the parent which could be the reason for the existing problem.
Several contributing factors trigger the infertility levels in both men and women differently:
- Inability to produce eggs or ovulate hampers the process of fertility as their deficiency can never complete the fertilization process
- Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), as the body tends to produce more androgens than the normal
- Fluctuating hormones in the body
- Implantation Failures in the women’s body
- Obesity and increased levels of stress to hamper the process of fertility
- The unhealthy lifestyle that includes insufficient dietary needs, sedentary habits, consumption of excessive alcohol and fluctuating sleeping patterns
- Infections in uterus
- Blocked Fallopian Tubes
- Inability to produce a healthy sperm for the fertilization to take place
- Unhealthy, sedentary lifestyles and augmented stress levels
- Any kind of infections and tumors in the male body also affects the sperm health
- High exposures to heat like industrial heat, laptops and sauna tubs
- Ejaculation problems where the man is unable to produce semen
- Hormonal imbalances in the body of the men
- Lack of proper sperm mobility for it to get transferred
- Many medicines even impair the sperm production which eventually leads to infertility
We all know about the fact that the human body tends to face infertility issues with increasing age. There is a direct relationship between the increasing age and the quality of eggs and sperms produced by the intending couple. However, this may vary. Women experience this much earlier in comparison to when men do. They face the decreasing egg quality as soon as they hit 30’s whereas men face it much later.
But it’s not that men do not have a Biological cycle and they can conceive at any age. The world needs to know that a man’s sperms also age with his age which leads to sperm degradation along with the quality of semen. This way it is always advised to people that they go for freezing of their eggs and sperms during their fertile years. Just like women, men also face Andropause which is called the Menopause of the Men.
Andropause usually happens in after the men hit their 60’s and can last up to for 15-20 years. During Andropause, men also face charges in the body like lowered self-esteem, reduce hair growth on the body, anxiety, self-doubt, reduced muscle mass and dropping strength. However, menopause is an extreme condition whereas, andropause doesn’t lead to major or visible changes in a man’s body.
(In conversation with Dr. Rita Bakshi, Senior Gynaecologist, and IVF Expert, International Fertility Centre)
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