Here at ExSeed we often talk about the benefits of testing before even starting your fertility journey. But how can a sperm test help you if you’re going down the assisted fertility route?
It may be you and your partner have been trying to conceive for a while, and are starting to plan a trip to a fertility clinic for help. If that’s the case, understanding your sperm health can help make the process run smoother – and give you more confidence and control.
Sperm tests can save you time
1 in 5 couples experience infertility, and in the last 40 years we’ve seen sperm count drop by more than 50%! This decline means fertility tests and treatments are in high demand. NHS sperm tests take time and can require 3 month waits between them, followed by long waitlists which will get longer as infertility rates rise.
If you or your partner are older, time can be of the essence. This goes double for older couples going down the assisted fertility route. Treatments like IVF have success rates as high as 29% for women under 35, and as low as 2% for women in their 40s! Therefore every year counts in fertility, so you can’t afford to spend that time on waiting lists for fertility tests.
Infertility could also be caused by an underlying health condition, which may cause further damage to your sperm while waiting for tests. A sperm analysis can help you discover recurrent issues like bad diet or low testosterone – things which will only improve with active changes.
…and save you money
Many couples go down the route of IVF/other treatments without even getting sperm checked! This means that couples sometimes waste money on failed treatments without even knowing if their sperm health could be a factor!
It’s a common belief that fertility struggles are usually down to the woman, but this isn’t true! Research indicates that in couples experiencing infertility, around 40% of cases are down purely to male factors! It is just as likely for infertility to be down to the man or the woman, so testing sperm before fertility treatment should be a no-brainer.
Fertility treatments like IVF and artificial insemination (IUI) do work for men experiencing fertility issues like low sperm motility or slightly low sperm count. But for guys with no sperm cells at all or sperm cells of low quality, these treatments may still prove unsuccessful. You can learn more about sperm quality in our new article “Sperm DNA Damage Provides Powerful Insights To Male Fertility” and about sperm motility in “What Is Sperm Motility?”
So if you’re rearing to go down the assisted fertility route, slow down, get a sperm analysis and then you can find the best options for your situation.
Can help you choose the best sperm for your treatment
It used to be that the only option for LGBT+ couples who couldn’t naturally conceive was adoption. But now queer families can have biological children through surrogacy and egg or sperm donation. This means that some couples – such as gay or bisexual men or trans women – have multiple sperm samples to choose from.
This can be one of the most challenging decisions for couples to make, deciding whose genetic material will make their child. In IVF, multiple eggs are used for one pregnancy, so some couples might have each partner’s sperm fertilise half the eggs. This means the outcome is fairly random.
Another option is to choose the strongest sperm. A sperm analysis can show which sperm is more likely to fertilize the eggs and produce a healthy child. This might help in making such a difficult decision. You can find out more about surrogacy and support for LGBT+ parents in our blog “Surrogacy and Sperm Health”.
“There is a clear correlation between good sperm quality and the chance of pregnancy. This of course is also dependent on the female partner’s fertility. As sperm quality can vary, it could be a good idea to have a quick, accurate and easy sperm test kit by your side so you always can estimate your chances of pregnancy”
Dr Fatin Willendrup, Head of Medical Affairs at ExSeed Health
Improve your chances
Your chances of conceiving through assisted fertility treatments are much better if you improve your sperm health. Healthy, strong sperm with moderate to high motility gives both IUI and IVF a better shot at success. As advanced as fertility treatments are they still rely on the quality of the sperm and egg.
Assisted fertility treatments are costly, time consuming, and can take a toll on mental health. They also usually need multiple cycles before you see any success, which means a lot of invasive procedures and, potentially, a lot of disappointment.
Every cycle of treatment requires as much help as possible, which means getting your body to produce the healthiest and strongest sperm it can. So get your exercise hours in, take all your male fertility multivitamins, and get testing!
Give you some control
Not getting the test results you would like to see can be hard – but reframe it as knowledge is power. The sooner you make yourself aware of any fertility issues, the sooner you can take control of your situation and maybe make some positive changes.
Men often report feeling side-lined during the process of getting pregnant, so taking matters into your own hands can help you feel more confident, proactive and positive.
Some of that control should also come from where, when and how you test your sperm. And that’s where ExSeed comes in. There’s no need to head down to your local fertility clinic for an awkward date with a plastic cup, as you can now test from the comfort of your own home with an ExSeed sperm kit! With the ExSeed kit and free app you can perform your test, get your results and start making plans for your fertility journey without even leaving the house.
Assisted fertility isn’t a guaranteed success, and the process can be pretty confusing and even distressing for couples. With a sperm analysis you can take control of your own fertility and start to understand just how everything works. You can also improve your sperm count and quality through lifestyle changes, and give any assisted fertility treatments a helping-hand.
Take control and test your sperm today, no matter what stage of the journey you’re in.