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Tips for Pre-Conception Health in Men

Improve Your Health before Pregnancy

Prepar­ing for preg­nan­cy is often an excit­ing time in many peo­ple’s lives. While the focus often cen­ters on wom­en’s health, there are many steps that men can take to improve their health. Fam­i­ly Med­i­cine physi­cian, Dr. Bri­an Beck­er, shares tips that can help improve men’s poten­tial for conception.

Tip #1: Make an Appoint­ment with Your Pri­ma­ry Care Physician

When pos­si­ble, talk with your pri­ma­ry care physi­cian before try­ing to con­ceive. Dur­ing the vis­it, your physi­cian will review your med­ical and fam­i­ly his­to­ry, ask you about med­ica­tions you take and dis­cuss your diet and lifestyle habits. Some genet­ic con­di­tions occur more often in cer­tain eth­nic groups or in fam­i­lies. Review­ing your fam­i­ly his­to­ry with your physi­cian allows he or she to deter­mine your baby’s poten­tial risk for cer­tain inher­it­ed dis­or­ders. This ini­tial vis­it will allow your, your provider can begin to iden­ti­fy fac­tors, if any, that could affect your jour­ney towards parenthood.

Tip #2: Elim­i­nate or Reduce the Use of Substances

While we know that smok­ing, exces­sive alco­hol con­sump­tion and drugs are harm­ful to your health, they also play a role in conception. 

Stop Smok­ing

Tobac­co use in any form, smok­ing, vap­ing, smoke­less tobac­co, etc., is shown to decrease sperm count and increase the risk of male infer­til­i­ty by as much as 30 per­cent. It is esti­mat­ed that smok­ing con­tributes to 13 per­cent of infer­til­i­ty cas­es. In addi­tion, preg­nant women who are exposed to sec­ond hand smoke have an increased risk of mis­car­riage, low birth weight and ear­ly deliv­ery among oth­er things.

Cut Down on Drink­ing Alcohol

Low­ered testos­terone lev­els and decreased sperm pro­duc­tion are linked to exces­sive alco­hol consumption.

Know About the Med­ica­tions You Take

Sperm pro­duc­tion can be impaired by the use of cer­tain drugs and med­ica­tions. Pre­scrip­tion and over-the-counter med­ica­tions as well as herbal sup­ple­ments can all neg­a­tive­ly impact your fer­til­i­ty. Talk with your pri­ma­ry care physi­cian about any med­ica­tions or sup­ple­ments you take.

Tip #3: Pre­vent and/​or Treat Sex­u­al­ly Trans­mit­ted Infections

Sex­u­al­ly trans­mit­ted infec­tions (STI’s) are infec­tions that are spread by sex­u­al con­tact. In addi­tion to poten­tial­ly being harm­ful dur­ing preg­nan­cy, many STI’s may affect a wom­an’s abil­i­ty to become preg­nant. Being screened and treat­ed for these infec­tions can not only pro­tect you, but also your part­ner and your unborn baby. Infec­tions can be passed from the moth­er-to-be to her baby, which may cause seri­ous health issues for your baby. If you think that you or your part­ner may have an STI, make an appoint­ment with your physi­cian to be tested.

Tip #4: Focus on Healthy Lifestyle Choices

There are many fac­tors that can impact your poten­tial to con­ceive. Incor­po­rat­ing health­i­er lifestyle choic­es, such as reg­u­lar exer­cise, eat­ing a well-bal­anced diet, healthy sleep­ing habits and man­ag­ing stress can improve your over­all health and max­i­mize your chances of becom­ing pregnant.

Talk with your physi­cian if you and your part­ner are con­sid­er­ing start­ing a fam­i­ly. To sched­ule an appoint­ment with a pri­ma­ry care physi­cian, please vis­it DuPageMed​ical​Group​.com.

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