Marijuana and Fertility: #2 Does Smoking Weed Lower Your Sperm Count?
Did you know that only in America, 13.7 percent of the population smoke weed, which estimated to be over 44 million people? On the larger scale, according to United Nations, 158.8 million people are using marijuana for various purposes. With this significant amount of users, weed and everything related are hot topics to debate, especially the impact of it on men’s fertility. To answer the question “#2 Does smoking weed lower your sperm count?”, yes, it does somehow. In this article, we will provide you with existing researches about cannabis’s impact on men’s reproduction function.
Marijuana’s Effect on Sperm
There may be some bad news for smoke-weed-everyday men under 30 here. A recent study from the University of Copenhagen of 1215 men aged 18-28 found that using marijuana more than once weekly lowered their sperm count by around one-third. Not only losing in number, a study published in Human Reproduction in 2014 showed that smoking weed regularly also changes the size and shape of your sperm. Instead of creating healthy sperm, cannabis doubled the risk of your body to produce abnormally shaped sperm and make it challenging to reproduce. Of 2249 men from 14 fertility clinics around the United Kingdom, 318 was found to have samples containing less than 4% of normal sperm in the research.
In addition, smoking marijuana also messes the sperm’s ability to reach the egg. These little swimmers have a long journey from the vaginal canal to meet up with the egg. So in order to not get tired out, they won’t start swimming immediately out of the proverbial gate. They will go with the flow of semen for a while and then begin to swim. Nothing will happen if there isn’t any THC in marijuana. THC is the ingredient makes you feel high, and it also makes these swimmers feel high as well. Due to THC, the sperm will start swimming instantly. This means many tire their bodies out long before reaching to the egg. Interestingly, you don’t even have to be the one who smokes marijuana to make this occurs. If your sexual partner smokes weed, THC will travel to the female reproductive organs and, if encountered by sperm, you already know what the situation is.
Don’t worry; you haven’t ran out of your luck yet. New sperm is regenerated after every 74 days, so if you’re looking to start a family and having difficulties, try laying off the herb until your body produces a brand new round of troops. Even if you smoke weed, you may still have enough healthy sperm to conceive.
Other Impacts of Marijuana on Men’s Reproduction Function
Apart from the not-so-good effect on sperm count, weed results in lower testosterone level as well as erectile dysfunction too.
A bunch of studies have looked at how smoking marijuana can affect the hormone that drives men’s sexual functions – testosterone. So far, what researchers have found is that smoking weed can lower testosterone level, but importantly, not enough to deviate from normal levels, and probably not enough to be medically significant. It also depends on how much weed you smoke.
What about erectile dysfunction? A 2011 study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine did find a potential link between marijuana use and erectile dysfunction. When you ingest THC, it interacts with certain proteins in your brain called cannabinoid receptors and hinders your brain function. You will experience this hindrance as getting high. These receptors are also in penile tissue, and some researchers assume that THC does the same thing in the penis. To put it simple, when you get high, your penis may not. Many studies need to carry out to see if this correlation is real, but if you’re having trouble with erectile dysfunction, try laying off the marijuana for a bit to see if it helps.
If you are on searching for a baby, both you and your partner need to keep away from marijuana. Either you’re having difficulties in conceiving or not, cutting off this herb is a good idea for the mother and the baby. Even though the effect may disappear after some time and few of them have not been proved thoroughly, you should be careful. Just in case, you know.