Today I will continue the topic of fertility. All the things
that I covered in my first article on the topic in relation to women also apply to
men, except of course the increased need for folic acid during pregnancy.
There is one thing that is specific to men. The reason why
men have testes (i.e. the site where sperm is produced) outside of the
abdominal cavity is because production of sperm requires a slightly lower
temperature than normal body temperature. This difference in temperature is
only about 2 degrees Celsius, but it is very important. Increasing the
temperature by only 1 or 2 degrees can hinder sperm production to the point of
infertility. This is why it is important for men not to wear tight underwear. Such
underwear keeps the testes close to the rest of the body, thus increasing the
temperature of the testes and hindering sperm production.
Another important point is the frequency of the timing of unprotected sex between partners. When trying to conceive, sexual intercourse should happen on a daily basis. This is especially true during ovulation, around the 14th day of each menstrual cycle. It is also the 14th day after the beginning of menses (i.e. menstrual bleeding). However, the exact time is hard to predict, so unprotected sex (protected sex does not allow for the sperm to reach the egg) should be performed with a higher frequency starting at day 12 and ending at day 17.
Another very important point is for women not to douche. It’s a fancy word for washing the internal vagina with soap and water. This removes the normal bacterial flora in the vagina. These are mainly lactobacilli bacteria, which help maintain the inner vagina in a healthy state. When these good bacteria are removed by douching, it leaves room for bad bacteria and/or yeast to flourish. Most of the time, the two pathogens actually invade together. When this happens, the inner vagina gets inflamed and becomes a very inhospitable environment for sperm, thus leading to infertility. In bacterial infection, there is a yellow green discharge, and in yeast infection there is a chunky white discharge. In both conditions, there is unpleasant aroma. Both conditions can be treated with antibiotics. When doing so, it is a good idea to replenish the vagina with good bacteria after treatment. A simple yet effective way that this can be achieved is by soaking a tampon in kefir or sour milk and inserting it in the vagina for eight hours. This will help prevent the recurrence of the conditions listed above and will create a very favourable environment for sperm.
These are the main tips for increased fertility. But I also recommend readingPart 1 on this topic if you haven’t already done so. You will find some very interesting and practical tips there as well. All the best, and see you next time.
Dr. Karol M.D