Men have always been dependent on their manhood as a source of pride and self-esteem. This becomes more of a problem when it comes to trying to conceive. Having a low sperm count can be one of the most embarrassing fertility problems for men. While many men believe that this means that they will never be able to have children, the good news is that a low sperm count is often an easily treatable condition.

Testing for Low Sperm Count

According to Planned Parenthood, diagnosing the cause of male infertility can take months, so men should not become discouraged if the answer is not presented straight away. There are a number of factors that increase the risk of low sperm count in men. These include having overheated testicles from hot tub use, wearing clothing that is too tight, having undergone treatment for cancer in the form of chemotherapy or radiation treatment, and the impact of environmental toxins such as pesticides or excessive amounts of lead in the water system. Drug and alcohol abuse, smoking cigarettes and having an undescended testicle are also reasons for having a low sperm count.

Treating Low Sperm Count

There are a number of treatments available for low sperm count and this will largely depend on the cause of the low sperm count. If some sort of lifestyle related habit has caused low sperm count then it makes sense that the habit should be addressed rather than going for a drastic option like surgery.

Generally, aside from treating lifestyle related problems, there are three main medical treatment options according to Planned Parenthood  – surgery, medication and hormone treatment. Normally a combination of these in one way or another is done in order to be successful. Furthermore, some of the most popular treatments are intrauterine insemination (IUI) where the sperm is taken from a man and ‘washed’ to separate the healthy sperm from the unhealthy sperm. This is then inserted straight into the womb of the woman. This practice is commonly known as artificial insemination.

Another popular way to deal with male infertility is through in vitro fertilization (IVF).

Here, the female takes medication to create eggs. Once the eggs are ripe, they are taken out of the woman and placed in a petri dish in a lab. Sperm is then inserted into the eggs and some of the eggs that have fertilized are then placed back in the uterus.

Alternative Treatments

Not everything has to occur in a laboratory – some of the most successful treatments for low sperm count in men have arisen from simple treatments like switching to a high protein, low fat diet, and timing intercourse. Ejaculating less may lead to stronger sperm. There is a common belief that leaving three days between ejaculations will strengthen sperm count and increase chances of pregnancy. Doctors also recommend taking certain nutritional supplements and vitamins in order to increase sperm count. Furthermore, as with women who struggle to conceive, men should always look after their bodies and ensure that they are neither over nor underweight.