Conceiving and having babies might seem to be the easiest thing for couples who have never suffered from fertility issues, but for childless couples, there can be nothing more complex and disheartening. But the problem is becoming very common these days, with approximately one in seven couples coming across it, as shown by studies. As opposed to conventional belief where the woman was held primarily responsible for inability to procreate, nearly one third of couples encounter this problem due to male infertility. The number is exactly equal to the cases where female infertility is the cause of hindrance in child bearing, while in the remaining cases, both the partners are responsible or the reason behind not being able to conceive goes undetected.
Here are some basic causes of infertility in both man and women:
Infertility in Men
- Primarily, low sperm count and poor sperm quality is the main reason of infertility in men. The reasons may be genetic disturbances, testicle related problems or surgeries and health problems like diabetes and infections. There may be more heat and high blood flow in the testes, which causes problem with number and quality of sperms.
- There may be some problems with the carrying of sperms such as premature ejaculation, blockage in testicles (epididymis), damage to reproductive organs, erection problems, dysfunction of tubes which acrry sperms and genetic diseases like cystic fibrosis. All these issues can cause infertility in males.
- Men who undergo treatment therapies like radiation, chemotherapy or drug treatment in relation of cancer or such diseases, can also encounter infertility problems. These can impair the production of sperms and hamper fertility.
- Lifestyle factors such as exposure to environmental pollutants and pesticides may be another cause and so can substance abuse, like taking drugs, alcohol, steroids and smoking. People who very tight clothes, expose the testicular areas to high temperatures or have frequent visits to sauna, can also suffer from low sperm production.
Infertility in Women
- Problems related to the functioning of ovaries may be the primary cause of infertility in women as they can hinder the production as well as release of eggs from the ovaries. The reasons of ovulation malfunction include polycystic ovary syndrome, eating disorders, tumors, too much exercise and injury.
- Blockage or inflammation of fallopian tube can also hinder a woman's fertility. It can be a result of a sexually transmitted disease and pelvic inflammatory disease.
- Another reason of female infertility is abnormality in reproductive organs like cervix and uterus. The most common problem is presence of fibroids in the uterus, which can hamper the implantation of the fertilized egg in the uterus.
- Endometriosis or growth of endometrial tissue outside the uterus can also cause fertility problems in a woman as it has a negative impact on the functioning of her reproductive organs.
- Some other possible causes to which female infertility is attributed are premature menopause, thyroid disorder, chemotherapy and radiation treatment, delayed puberty, diabetes, exposure to pesticides and pollutants, genetic factors, lifestyle problems such as smoking and alcohol abuse. Age factor, weight and previous history of miscarriages also have a bearing on the fertility of a woman.
There are some cases where it becomes practically impossible to detect the actual cause of infertility. But establishing a cause is really effective in finding the solution to the problem.