For Men’s Health Week our gyms are sharing factual and helpful information on all kinds of men’s health problems. From checking for testicular cancer to mental health, here we explore one issue that isn’t openly talked about when related to health issues and fitness: Infertility and Where to Get Help.
Male Fertility Factors
Oxford University published a paper on the Biology of Reproduction, finding that 1 in 20 men suffer from low sperm. They share that lifestyle factors like obesity and alcohol dependency partly to blame. Having a fitness lifestyle can work in your favour to reduce that possibility, plus keep your mind in check throughout the journey.
On the flip side however, people who take steroids for extreme fitness goals or body building can also cause a negative impact on fertility issues later in life. Whatever your lifestyle, our recommendation is everything in moderation.
It is obvious however given these factors, that men of a young age don’t have a comprehensive education on fertility that empowers them on what lifestyle factors and age can affect male fertility. Perhaps boys knowing this from their curriculum would mean they’d understand what can be done to protect their natural fertility, not to mention end the stigma surrounding infertility early on.
What happens when you find out that the thing that makes you male doesn’t serve its purpose? When diagnosed with health issues the fallout can be certain mood disorders including depression, anxiety and PTSD as explained by the National Institute of Mental Health. They detail that these further weaken the immune system and disrupt hormones in the body.
Whatever your mind tells you during this time we want to remind you that… Being infertile doesn’t make you any less of a man.
Thankfully, being physically active can be a great way to help reduce the negative impact infertility causes to mental wellbeing.
Where to Get Help
Besides sucking it up and carrying on like some men try, there are other options if you find the experience at fertility clinics desensitising. You can talk to your GP or confide in your partner for starters. However, a lot of men express how talking to men in similar positions is preferable. We’ve listed places you can go to for this below:
Fertility Network UK is a private space for men to speak online once a month about their experiences. You can find further support from them here. – https://fertilitynetworkuk.org/himfertility/
The Easy Bit is a documentary that highlights the struggles men face and shows that you are not alone, nor need be. – vimeo.com/ondemand/theeasybit
The Man Cave is a support service provided on their website and instagram which highlights first person stories. – them-ancave.co.uk
Human Fertilisation & Embryology Authority is a UK fertility regulator who provides impartial and accurate information about IVF, clinic and other treatments. – https://www.hfea.gov.uk/treatments/explore-all-treatments/getting-emotional-support/
Want to add your experience to enlighten and end the stigma surrounding male infertility? Simply send it to email@example.com to be added.
Like this? Then why not check out our blog on How to Start Exercising in a Gym to Improve Mental Health