A new study presented at the annual congress of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine has found that getting less than six hours of sleep in the evening has serious consequences for a man’s fertility.
According to the study, not getting enough sleep decreases a man’s chances of impregnating a woman by about 43%. On the other end of the scale, the study also found that getting too much sleep, more than nine hours, had just as much of a detrimental effect, decreasing the probability of impregnating a woman by 42%.
“There has been a growing body of literature on the relationship between sleep quality and testosterone, which is critical for male sexual behaviour,” said lead author of the study Dr Lauren Wise. “Sleep problems specifically have been associated with lower sperm concentrations, total sperm count and percentage of normal sperm morphology as well as decreased testosterone levels. But no studies have looked at sleep and male fertility.”
Dr Wise went on to explain that men who slept between seven to nine hours a night had a lower risk of unfortunate health outcomes.
Data from 675 couples that were undergoing IVF treatment was analysed. Participants were made up of men who were 21 and older and women between the ages of 21 and 45. Researchers looked at how much sleep the men were getting every eight weeks for a period of a year.
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Dr Wise explained that sleep disruption had an impact on the production of testosterone.
“The majority of daily testosterone release occurs during sleep, so we think there may be a hormonal mechanism going on.”
It’s still unknown what the exact mechanism is that damaged sperm as a result of a lack of sleep or too much of it. It’s believed that a new study will need to be conducted to investigate further.
Additional source: Health Daily