Heat's impact on male fertility

A recent study highlights the substantial risk extreme heat poses to male fertility, marking a significant concern amid global warming trends.

Euronews Green reports.


In short:

  • Scientists from Singapore found that exposure to extreme heat significantly increases the risk of low sperm count and concentration, with sperm mobility also affected.
  • The research suggests that men in their prime reproductive years, specifically between 25 and 35, are the most vulnerable to these effects.
  • Recommendations include avoiding excessive heat, saunas, hot baths, and wearing tight underwear to protect sperm health.

Key quote:

"So just because you're a young male, don't think you're invincible, and don't think you're not also vulnerable to these impacts."

— Dr. Samuel Gunther, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine

Why this matters:

The testicles, where sperm production occurs, are particularly sensitive to heat. Prolonged exposure to high temperatures can disrupt this delicate process, leading to decreased sperm count, impaired sperm motility (movement), and changes in sperm morphology (shape and structure). This can ultimately reduce a man's ability to father children.

Research has shown that heat stress can also damage the DNA within sperm, increasing the risk of genetic abnormalities in offspring.

And it's not just heat — chemicals in our environment are disrupting our hormonal balance, causing varying degrees of reproductive havoc as well.

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