By Pamela Madsen, The Fertility Advocate
Perhaps you are in that very uncomfortable situation where you have done every “trying to get pregnant” tip from standing on your head to taking your fertility temperature. You might even have bought a few books on fertility, and have done everything they said from giving up wine to dropping the coffee. And there is still no pregnancy. You might have even whispered the word “infertility” because you and your partner have agreed that it is time to see a fertility specialist. If it goes like it usually goes, it is the woman who ends up getting tested for fertility issues first.
But the fact is that infertility is an equal opportunity disease that afflicts over 6 million couples in the US. Of that number about 20% of infertility issues are attributable only to the male. In another 30 to 40% of couples it is a combination of both male and female. So if you stop and think about it, in a majority of couples – there is often a male fertility factor at play.
One of the fastest ways to find out if you have a male fertility factor at play is trying an over-the-counter male fertility test, to see if the sperm count is healthy or if the sperm count is low. It’s imperative, that both the male and the female in this baby making dance get evaluated if conception is taking more than six month and if the woman is over the age of 35. You can wait a year if you and your partner are younger. But if you are feeling nervous, at home sperm test kits and over the counter fertility ovulation kits can help you decide if you need to speed up the process or just take a breath!
While advances in treating male fertility have been and continue to be breathtaking, it is the attitudes and shame that seem to move at a snail’s pace. Somehow men still feel like a low sperm count or an issue with theirs sperm’s motility reflects on their manliness. It is still the norm for women to be the one to buy the male home fertility test, read the books and be the first in line at the doctor’s office.. Certainly a visit to the gynecologist may be in order, but it becomes a problem when male fertility is simply an afterthought.
Male infertility can often be attributable to other under lying causes – and often easily treated after being detected by a male home fertility test. So, if you are the lady leading the baby making parade it’s great to buy home fertility tests and check in with the basics. But if everything looks normal and the calendar says that it is time to visit the doctor – remember to bring the man!
|Pamela Madsen was the first Executive Director of RESOLVE NYC and is the Founder of The American Fertility Association. Pamela is an internationally known fertility advocate who has appeared on Oprah and countless other major media outlets. Currently, Pamela is a fertility coach and publisher of The Fertility Advocate. She is also a blogger for Psychology Today and SpermCheck Fertility.|