Tuesday, 3 January 2012
Tight Underwear Could Affect Sperm Production
A medical officer at VALUMED Medical Centre in Accra, Dr. Kofi Davids has warned that increased exposure to excess heat could have some effects on sperm production.
According to him, the main reason for having the scrota outside of the body is because the body's internal temperature is too high for sperm production, so by “hanging out” the scrota keep the testicles cooler.
Testicles, according to medical experts need to be kept at a fairly stable temperature.
The body is able to automatically adjust the temperature by keeping them closer or farther away, depending on the body’s temperature at a particular time. This is why the scrota shrivel up when they are exposed to cold.
Speaking on the topic “Sexual Myths” on the Vodafone Health Line Radio Show on Accra-based Citi 97. 3 FM, Dr.
Davids cautioned that wearing certain kinds of clothing, especially tight fitting underwear, keep testicles closer to the heat of the body and could affect sperm production.
“Wearing tight and especially black underwear and tight jeans shorts for instance, increases the temperature around the scrotal area.
The temperature at which sperms are produced usually should be about two to three degrees lower than the body temperature, hence higher temperatures are not favourable for sperm production” Dr. Davids advised.
He added that tight fitting clothes or underwear reduce air circulation around the scrotal area, thereby drawing the testicles closer to the body.
Dr. Davids who advised strongly against black underwear explained that “black fabrics are known to retain heat; therefore, wearing them keeps the heat in the scrotal area which can reduce the rate of sperm production.
He therefore encouraged the use of loose fitting underwear such as boxer shorts, which allow proper air circulation around the testicles.
Male fertility experts say people working under heat conditions-welders, drivers, etc, are more vulnerable to low sperm counts and are strongly encouraged to wear loose fitting clothes and have regular baths to bring the testicular temperature down.
Another effect, related to “overheating” the scrotal area, is the reduction of the very essential hormone, testosterone, which experts say, having less of, could lead to lethargy, weaker muscles and general depression.
Again, tight fitting underwear may cause a condition medically known as Testicular Torsion, (the twisting of the spermatic cord, which cuts off the blood supply to the testicle and surrounding structures within the scrota). It is said to be a painful condition and may cause other testicular infections.
According to Dr. Davids, people who wear tight underwear are more likely to develop rashes in their scrotal area as tight underwear tend to become damp when worn especially in a warm environment. This can lead to irritation, itchy genitals and a higher risk of developing fungi down there.
Source: Vera Asokwa Ofori