Your sperm: and how to look after themDownload the PDF (2 MB)
You don’t often think about fertility or the health of your sperm until it comes time to start a family. For the best chances of starting a healthy pregnancy you need to make large numbers of sperm that are good swimmers, and that ‘know’ how to fertilise the egg when they arrive. Sperm also has to contain genetic information (DNA) in good condition. Having regular sex also helps! Whether young or old, with a current partner or not, you should be looking to protect your fertility so that natural conception can happen when you’re ready to have children.
In about half of cases where couples have trouble getting pregnant naturally, the problem lies with men. In many cases, there are no treatments to correct poor sperm production, lockages to sperm tubes or when couples have difficulty having sex, which means that assisted reproductive technologies such as in vitro fertilisation (IVF) treatment are needed.
There are certain things that you can also do to protect your fertility, protect your partner’s fertility and lessen the chances of needing IVF treatments in the future. And don’t forget, it ‘takes two to tango’, so taking into account your partner’s age is important when starting a
family as a woman’s fertility levels naturally drop after the age of 35. This guide is aimed at both single and partnered men of all ages. It explains the environmental, lifestyle and medical conditions that can reduce fertility and provides tips on
how to maintain your chances of natural fatherhood.