Stress and Low Sperm Count
Whilst age can impact on sperm count (fertility rates for men under 40 is 60%, over 40 it falls to 50%), emotional and relationship stress can impact on the hormone GnRH, interferes with the Leydig cells, which in response lowers testosterone and reduces sperm count.
That can cause a double whammy in so much as high stress can place a burden on a relationship in its own right, but add that to infertility problems and a vicious cycle is likely to arise and create more relationship stress. A further vicious cycle can occur if the response to failed conception is more sex (which is a normal way for males to reduce their stress levels too) then the problem is compounded, as more frequent sex leads to a lower sperm count!
Stress is a well known and much discussed topic and not all is necessarily stress is bad. A sensible level of stress can aid performance, but unlikely in this case, especially as men are very often discouraged by social stigma from neither acknowledging the levels of stress nor from asking for help (especially therapy!), especially around sexual performance (or at least its outcome).
Naturally stress can come from many sources (such as work, past issues, financial pressures or personal life circumstances) and there are numerous forms of stress audits that a sufferer can undertake or find a therapist to help them complete and uncover key causes.
Hypnotherapy, normally supported by some form of short term psychotherapy, like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is effective way to not only deal with general stress levels, but also to address relationship and sexual performance issues. Hypnosis is particularly effective in reducing stress as it stimulates the deep relaxation response and encourages physical recovery.
The beauty of hypnotherapy is that the couples can experience it together too or one partner can witness the process for the other. This potentially brings not just a deeper connection between the two, but can lead to greater tolerance and understanding between the couple.
That can often be enough, because it is not unusual during the process to find that conception problems are also related to some form of fear or anxiety about parenting. The reasons for that can be many fold, but reassurance, understanding and the right gentle therapeutic and hypnotherapeutic positive ways can uncover and resolver those types of unconscious withholdings.
With the practical support of hypnotherapy, the response to coping with stress and for increasing sperm count is often common sense; getting exercise, having sex regular, measured sex, eating well taking vitamins and bringing life/work back into balance. The Human Givens model of therapy provides a means to identify the areas to focus on in achieving balance by using the Emotional Needs Audit and then engaging the individual’s resources into achieving that balance. The premise behind the approach is that if our needs are being met we will be emotionally healthy and more engaging towards conception.
Addressing stress is a sensible, long term healthy and positive way, it may also help rise that reluctant sperm count.
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Tara Guthrie-Knight BA(hons), DHP HPD MNCH(Lic)AFSFHMay 16th, 2017