What Men Can Do

What Men Can Do

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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Although some factors, such as age, are outside his control, there are several things a man can do to improve his sexual potency.

* Don't smoke, and drink only in moderation. Tobacco and alcohol are known to have negative effects on sperm.

* Know what medications you are taking. Some drugs -- such as calcium channel blockers to treat hypertension, cimetidine for acid reflux and colchicine for gout -- have been tied to lower sperm quality. But talk to your doctor before stopping any medications, advises Richard Sherins of Columbia Fertility Associates. (Sustained use of anabolic steroids and illegal mind-altering drugs also reduces sperm count and quality.)

* Maintain a healthy weight. A recent study in the journal Human Reproduction showed that excess weight may be linked with abnormal testosterone levels and poor semen quality.

* Wear loosely fitted underwear to help keep the temperature optimal.

* Practice safe sex. Sexually transmitted diseases such as chlamydia and gonorrhea can contribute to infertility by blocking internal plumbing.

* Ask your doctor before using any lubricants. Nearly all commercial brands can kill sperm.

-- Ranit Mishori


© 2008 The Washington Post Company

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