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Health News of Friday, 2 April 2021


Low sperm count: 5 ways men damage their sperm without knowing

Low sperm count among men is gradually becoming a norm across the world.

Health professionals have described it as an underlying problem which could be attributed to a hormonal imbalance, an inherited chromosomal abnormality and dilated testicular veins.

These conditions often block the passage of sperm which may cause early signs and symptoms of damage.

While most men would want to avoid a complete absence of sperm, research shows that sperm count is considered lower than normal should one have fewer than 15 million sperm per milliliter of semen.

Having a low sperm count decreases the odds that one of your sperm will fertilize your partner's eggs. However, many men who have a low sperm count are still able to father a child.

Though the causes of low sperm count could be hormonal or inherited, there are some very common ways and habits that cause damage even without knowing.

GhanaWeb in the piece has compiled some of the causes and habits that could lead to a low sperm count as per research.

Tight Boxers:

Most men rather wear tight pants instead of wearing boxers. These tight pants often keep your testicles closer to the body which result in warm temperatures that kill sperm and equally lead to a low sperm count.


The most common among a low sperm count could be associated with infections and these could be sexually transmitted ones.

They often occur in the testicles and can block sperm production or cause an abnormal discharge. Some of these infections could be derived through Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) such as gonorrhea or HIV.

These infections if not properly treated could result in permanent damage to the testis and subsequently lead to infertilities.


Varicoceles is the swelling of the testis veins which is also a major cause of low sperm count and infertility often found among men.

Varicoceles creates an abnormal temperature inside the testis which might kill some sperm or reduce sperm quality. Health professionals however say this could be treated.

Prolonged use of laptops and phones

Another common cause of low sperm count is the persistent use of laptops under one’s laps. Most laptops often generate a heat temperature of up to 70°C while in use.

Owing to this, a rather prolonged use of laptops carried on the laps may cause irreparable damage to a male’s reproductive function.

Health professionals have advised that laptops placed on a table or desk during use. For mobile phones, health professionals advise that it be placed in the back pocket.

Illegal Drugs, Steroids and Alcohol

Studies have shown that the excessive use of some legal and illegal drugs, alcohol can have long lasting effects on male reproductive function.

It’s been found that some anti-inflammatory drugs like Sulfasalazine and other anti-cancer drugs can cause sperm damage.

The use of cocaine, tobacco, marijuana and other illicit drugs also can result in low sperm count.