Thursday, September 23, 2010

Check it out: Info from "The Disappearing Male"

Most of you know that so far, our fertility diagnosis is one of male factor infertility. Specifically, the Wacky Wicketeer has abnormal sperm morphology, or too low a number of properly-shaped sperm, and sometimes borderline sperm motility. This male factor infertility issue is becoming more and more common, and for us, is likely one of the factors involved in our two pregnancy losses.

When the Wacky Wicketeer and I discovered our infertile status, it was estimated that one in ten couples of child-bearing age in the U.S. was infertile. That number has already gone up to one in eight. Moreover, reproductive and other problems in boys are on an alarming increase.

A little less than two years ago, and replayed earlier this year, CBC, a respected Canadian television network, did a documentary as part of its Doc Zone series, called "The Disappearing Male". Unfortunately, the website only allows those in Canada to view it online, here:

But even if you can't watch the video, you can find some of the alarming facts on their fact sheet on male infertility, such as: "The average sperm count of a North American college student today is less than half of what it was 50 years ago." They also include some great explanations as to just how and why this appears to be happening, in their document, "Backgrounder: Endocrine 101".

While the current state of information in this arena is fluctuating and largely theoretical, the statistics are staggering, and the anecdotes are heartbreaking. The Wacky Wicketeer and I have taken the approach that, if there is something we can do about it in our lives, then we might as well do it. Some examples of the steps we have taken include: Getting rid of all our kitchen plastics other than numbers 1, 2, 4 and 5; Not using any plastics in the microwave; Getting a new couch; Dusting and vaccuming more frequently; Decreasing products we use with phthalates and parabens, opting for goods that use other, known and recognizable ingredients.

I hope you'll take a minute to look at the CBC info, and consider what you can do to make a difference for the children and future children in your life.