What are the biggest myths on fertility?

Science and Health

There are several myths that people are willing to swear by, and “if you just do this everything will be fine” and maybe “if you do this, you will never get pregnant.” So the best experts in Israel, Prof. Yoel Shopro and Dr. Eran Altman, addressed the most common myths about pregnancy and fertility.

They stated that women are not the only ones who can suffer from fertility problems. 

In one-third of the cases where there is infertility in a couple, it is due to a decrease in the man’s fertility. That’s why finding out the man’s fertility is extremely important and neglect can prevent the right treatment.

Does the age of the man affect the health of the newborn child? – Not necessarily

Studies show that there is a slight increase in the risk of schizophrenia, autism and other health problems in children of fathers over the age of 45.

Do tight pants or boxers damage sperm? – False

Although the ideal temperature for the testicles is 2-4 degrees lower than normal body temperatures, no evidence has been found that wearing tight underwear raises the temperature enough to cause a problem.

Illustrative image of a pregnant belly. (credit: PIXABAY)

Are there drugs that can damage sperm fertility? – True

While testosterone treatment can be suitable for some men who suffer from problems with sexual function, taking drugs significantly reduces the sperm count and sometimes even results in a complete absence of sperm production.

Does being in a hot tub or hot water actually harm sperm fertility? – Partially true

There is a certain negative effect on men who have very hot baths for a long time. But there’s difficulty in conducting accurate studies on the subject.

Are there jobs with more risk of decreased fertility? – True

There is a decrease in sperm quality in people who work near stoves and drivers who sit for long hours as a result of an increase in the temperature of their testicles.

Having sex every other day is most recommended for increased fertility – False

A couple trying to conceive is recommended to have sex as much as possible. In studies that compared having intercourse every day to having intercourse once every other day for the chance of conceiving, a slight advantage was found for those who were having intercourse every day.

Fertility treatments cause obesity – False

In some parts of the treatment and depending on the ovarian response, there may be a feeling of swelling due to fluid accumulation. This condition is not obesity (even if there is a small weight gain) and is reversible. However, it is important to maintain dietary habits during treatment, so as not to become obese due to loss of control over dietary habits.

Using the morning-after pill lowers the chance of miscarrying

The morning-after pills reduce the chance of conception from the same sexual contact that occurred close to taking them. They do not have a similar effect in the longer term.

If there is a fertility problem, it will show up in the first attempt to get pregnant and not later – False

Infertility is defined as failure to conceive during 6-12 months of unprotected intercourse and there is no difference whether it is the first, second or fourth child.

Lying on your back during intercourse will help to get pregnant – False

Once the sperm reaches the cervix, the sexual position is irrelevant.

Fertility treatments may cause misdiagnoses of breast cancer – False

Fertility treatments do not increase the risk of breast cancer (after ascertaining the background risk factors). The reason why every fertility patient undergoes a breast evaluation before the treatment is to rule out the existence of a tumor that may grow as a result of the increase in the level of estrogen and progesterone in the blood during the treatments.