Mobile phones and infertility
Mobile phones and infertility
Infertility currently affects between 7 and 15 percent of married couples or 186 million people world-wide – and half of these are men.
One of the critical factors affecting male fertility is sperm motility – the ability of sperm to move forward at a reasonable rate in order to achieve fertilisation. Research has shown that sperm motility has declined in recent years and one of the reasons for this is mobile phone use, says Lanfeng Xing, from the Department of Reproductive Endocrinology at Zhejiang University, China.
To explore the link between mobile phone use and sperm motility, Xing’s team investigated 1634 healthy men aged 20 to 40 years, with an average age of 31. They conducted a survey of the men to ascertain their mobile phone use of and collected samples of their sperm for analysis.
The team found that mobile phone use did affect sperm motility and that the more men used their mobile phones, the less motile were their sperm. ‘[T]he daily duration of mobile phone use had a statistically significant effect on sperm motility. When the daily duration of mobile phone use increased by 1 unit, the percentage of progressively motile spermatozoa decreased by 1.29% …, the percentage of rapid progressive motile spermatozoa decreased by 0.88% …, and the percentage of total motile spermatozoa decreased by 1.47%,’ they wrote.
The reduction in motility was not affected by whether or not the participants used earphones with their phones or where on their bodies the men carried their mobile phones.
The authors say that that the radiation emitted by the phone is likely to damage sperm by causing oxidative stress – free radicals that have been shown in previous research to decrease sperm motility and, in some cases, damage sperm DNA.
The authors offer a word of warning for mobile phone users.
‘We believe that mobile phone RF-EMR [radiofrequency electromagnetic radiation] may be the main cause of sperm motility decline. These trends suggest that recent concerns about long-term exposure to RF-EMR from mobile phones should be taken more seriously, given the growing trend of deterioration of the male reproductive system. Thus, the duration of mobile phone use should be reduced in daily life in order to avoid further declines in sperm motility…’
International Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity Awareness Day – June 16
This Thursday, 16 June, people around the world will be marking International Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity (EHS) Awareness Day.
EHS is a health condition where people experience symptoms during or after exposure to electromagnetic pollution. Symptoms include, but are not limited to, headaches, pain, nausea, anxiety, sleep problems, cognitive problems, depression, and behaviour problems.
The day is a good opportunity for us to think about our use of wireless devices and, perhaps, to limit it.
We invite you to let us know how you decide to mark EHS Awareness Day and if you have any tips for reducing exposure.
What can you do?
Reduce your use of mobile phones.
Decide how you can reduce your use of wireless devices on June 16.
Find out more about EHS and what you can do about it here.
Hear me talk about 5G and what you can do about it with Wayne Crouch and Lisa Johnston from the Australian National Review :
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