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How Alcohol and Drugs Affect Fertility

how alcohol and drugs affect fertilityUnfortunately alcohol and drugs affect much more than just your looks and physical body, they can also affect a person’s ability to conceive. In other words alcohol and drugs can affect your fertility. Though you may not have realized it, drugs, including steroids, alcohol, and tobacco, can have a very negative on both the male and female reproductive systems. In fact, it is believed that drug use plays a role in a large percentage of many of unexplained fertility cases.

How Alcohol and Drugs Affect Fertility: Alcohol

Heavy drinking has a heavy effect on both male and female fertility. Men and woman who drink more than six alcoholic beverages per day are more likely to suffer from hormonal imbalances which affect both the making of sperm in men and ovulation in women.

How Alcohol and Drugs Affect Fertility: Tobacco

Many people are aware of the dangers of smoking while pregnant. However, the said is not necessarily true about the dangers of smoking when it comes to conceiving. Cigarette smoking and chewing tobaccos have both been found to cause a number of fertility issues in both men and women. Often times men who chew tobacco or smoke have low sperm counts and poor sperm motility both of which can reduce the chance of conceiving. Women who smoke can suffer from a reduced ovarian reserve and an increased risk of suffering from a miscarriage or stillbirth.

How Alcohol and Drugs Affect Fertility: Marijuana

Marijuana use plays a role in both female and male fertility. According to a study done in 2003, regular marijuana use can affect fertility in males by:

  • Lowering sperm count
  • Decreasing the volume of seminal fluid
  • Poor sperm motility

Marijuana use affects fertility in women because small amounts of THC are secreted into the reproductive system. Sperm that come into contact with this THC can become over stimulated.

How Alcohol and Drugs Affect Fertility: Steroids

Anabolic steroids are derived from the male hormone testosterone. As a result of the use of steroids male and female fertility can be affected; male fertility can be permanently affected. In men steroids affect fertility by causing:

  • Decreased sperm production
  • Increased number of abnormal sperm
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Atrophy of the testicles

Steroids can also harm female fertility by inhibiting the release of luteinizing and follicle stimulating ovulation, disrupting period or menstruation, and causing the appearance of masculine traits. i.e. big muscles, hair on the face etc.

How Alcohol and Drugs Affect Fertility: Drugs

Street drugs which include cocaine, heroin, and ecstasy have all been shown to have very dramatic effects on male and females including problems with fertility. Many of these drugs can lead to permanent reproductive problems.

Drugs affect fertility in men by:

  • Reducing libido
  • Causing abnormally shaped sperm
  • Poor sperm count

Drugs affect fertility in women by:

  • Causing ovulatory dysfunction
  • Irregular periods (menstrual cycles)
  • Reduce in ovarian reserves

Alcohol and drugs affect fertility immensely just as they do many of physical parts of the body and it is best if you are trying to get pregnant or have children to stop all drug use and drinking.

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