What is low
sperm count?

Low sperm count is defined by a sample with fewer than 15 million sperm per milliliter of semen.  Having a low sperm count decreases the odds that one of your sperm will fertilize your partner’s egg, resulting in pregnancy.

Healthy sperm isn’t guaranteed; there are a wide range of reasons and factors that contribute to low sperm count, low fertility, and infertility in men.  Understanding the factors and choices that can have a negative impact on your reproductive health and what you can do to improve your fertility can prevent future fertility issues.

Strenuous riding, such as motorcycle, bicycle, and horseback, often lead to low sperm count and low fertility, as this causes repeated impact to the scrotal area. Some of the causes of low sperm count include :

Men who smoke cigarettes and marijuana regularly are more likely to have low sperm counts, low fertility, and infertility.  Also, heavy drinking can lead to reduced production of testosterone and decreased sperm production, thus leading to low fertility and infertility.

Many soy-based food products contain plant estrogen, which is shown to reduce testosterone bonding and sperm production, causing low fertility.


Idiopathic oligospermia is low sperm count of unknown cause; this occurs in about 30% of cases where no causative factor can be found for their low sperm count, low fertility, or infertility.  

For men being impacted by low fertility or low sperm count, pooling multiple low count samples will create a higher quality sample for fertility treatments in the future, which may assist in creating a successful pregnancy.  

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