You’re probably well aware that smoking damages the body’s internal systems; mainly the heart and the lungs. When you inhale cigarette smoke, you’re exposing your internal organs to over 7,000 chemicals at once, many of which are toxic to humans, carcinogenic, or downright dangerous. Did you know that cigarettes can actually contain trace amounts of uranium? Yes, that’s the same radioactive isotope used in nuclear weapons. Inhaling that can’t be good, right?
Aside from damaging your most important internal organs, smoking can also cause problems with male fertility and sexuality. Smoking affects the heart, lungs, and blood vessels, which can cause problems with blood flow. This can lead to other problems in the bedroom, and more.
Let’s look closer at how smoking affects male fertility; it might just be enough to make you want to quit for good.
The Heart and Lungs
When you smoke, your blood pressure increases. Hypertension can cause extensive damage to blood vessels, increasing the risk of clotting or ruptures. Additionally, a weakened heart will struggle with sexual activity, making even the most arousing times a disappointment.
Your lungs are immediately assaulted with thousands of chemicals when you light up. From there, those chemicals pass through the alveoli, where a gas exchange occurs. Blood is oxygenated and sent back through the body, and de-oxygenated blood is circulated back to the lungs to release waste product(s). During this gas exchange, all of those lovely chemicals you inhaled enter your bloodstream.
One inhalant that’s particularly harmful is carbon monoxide. This binds to red blood cells, causing your platelets to stick together and reduces the oxygenation capabilities of red blood cells.
If you can’t perform, conception becomes quite the challenge. Many men experience erectile dysfunction that is seemingly improved once they quit smoking.
Sperm count is negatively affected by smoking, causing as much as a 23% decrease according to this study. Fewer sperm means less of a chance of causing pregnancy, as most sperm do not survive the journey to the egg. With so many toxic chemicals in cigarettes, the sperm simply die off, or your seminiferous tubules (inside the testes) have trouble producing them at all.
Smoking is so destructive that is has the power to alter DNA in healthy sperm. This damaged DNA makes sperm less effective at fertilizing an egg and can affect the way the sperm functions. Misshapen sperm won’t swim correctly, reducing their ability to reach the egg at all. The bottom line? Smoking alters your sexual organs and cells to the point where they can become completely ineffective.
If you’re planning on having a family, smoking is detrimental to your efforts. For the maximum chance of success, it’s time to ditch cigarettes altogether. Besides, you’ll want to be alive through your new baby’s life, and smoking can literally shave years off of your life.
Surprisingly, researchers have found a link between damaged sperm from smoking and certain birth defects and risk factors in smokers’ offspring. Even if only the father smoked while trying to conceive, there’s a chance the damaged DNA can affect the pregnancy and increase the child’s risk for cancer.
Not only are you putting yourself at risk, but you’re now risking the health and safety of your unborn child. If the mother is also a smoker, the child could face significant birth defects and malformations.
Smoking is devastating to the human body, and infertility is just the tip of the iceberg. Cancer, heart disease, and more can come from a lifelong habit of smoking, and they’ll leave you with more problems than infertility. You could become bed-ridden, dependent on oxygen tanks, face chemotherapy or extensive surgeries, and more.
Not to mention the cost of illness. Having cancer or requiring major surgery is certain to take a massive toll on your wallet, as is the very habit of smoking itself. Money, time, health, and life’s pleasures can all be lost to the habit of smoking. It’s time to quit once and for all.
Quitting Has Never Been Easier
Luckily, quitting has never been easier in our modern world. With thousands of online resources available, tobacco alternatives like tobaccoless dip (https://blackbuffalo.com/), and a strong sense of community from online support groups, you can start your journey toward a smoke-free and fertile lifestyle today. Don’t put the future of your family at risk for a habit like smoking that will eventually kill you. Did you know that about half of all smokers will either develop serious health complications or die from the habit?
Don’t let yourself become a statistic. There are resources available to help!