Low sperm count, also known as oligospermia refers to the sperm count less than 15 million/mL in the semen, that is the fluid ejaculated during an orgasm. Low sperm count is a common condition and may be associated with infertility i.e. the inability to father children
Genetic disorders and chromosomal abnormalities
-Antibodies that attack sperm
-Defects in tubules that transport sperm
-Heavy metal exposure
-Radiation or X-rays
-Health, lifestyle and other causes
-Occupations like welding, truck driving
Certain precautions to be taken in order to avoid low sperm count are:
-Quit alcohol consumption
-Stop drug abuse
-Review your current medications with your doctor
-Avoid hot showers and keep the genital area cool
-Eat a balanced diet
-Stay away from pesticides, heavy metals, and other toxins.
There are no specific symptoms of low sperm count. Specific tests like semen analysis, scrotal ultrasound, hormone testing, testicular biopsy, anti-sperm antibodies test, etc need to be carried out in order to detect low sperm count
Sperm count can be increased naturally by exercising regularly, getting sufficient sleep and following a healthy diet which is rich in antioxidants. Minimizing the consumption of alcohol/prescription drugs and giving up smoking are also known to increase sperm count. Other medical and surgical options are available to treat low sperm count. Consult a specialist doctor in order to understand the benefits and risks associated with them.
Process of treatment
If there are symptoms of infertility, a doctor must be consulted to find the root cause of the problem. If the issue persists due to low sperm count then the person may be examined to rule out any potential factors.
The process will include the following:
Comprehensive medical history examination and questions related to genetic history that could've affected fertility. The doctor will also ask questions regarding frequency of intercourse, sexual habits & masturbation.
To assess the quantity of the sperm, a semen analysis is conducted. A computer or microscope is used to count the no. of sperms that appear within squares of a matrix. This also helps to study the morphology of the sperms. These samples can be collected with the help of various methods like masturbation or in a special condom.
Other tests may be required as per the doctor's recommendation.
These tests can be Scrotal ultrasound, Hormone testing, Post-ejaculation urinalysis, Genetic tests, Testicular biopsy, Anti-sperm antibody tests, Specialized sperm function tests & Transrectal ultrasound.
How to increase sperm count?
-Get Sufficient Vitamin C
-Relax and Minimize Stress
-Take Adequate Vitamin D
-Eat foods rich in Zinc