Learning & Resource Center Articles
What's in the Meaning of Low Sperm Count?
By: Dr. Roger C. Hirsh, OMD, L.Ac.
Generally a "low sperm count" diagnosis for a man is a devastating blow. The alleged measure of one's "maleness" has somehow been tipped in the wrong direction. This measure can mean that a man feels impotent. The diagnostic communication itself can even be the cause of erectile dysfunction (ED).
Generally in American society ED is a considerable problem as men edge toward andropause, hence the rise of erectile enhancement drugs and herbs flooding the markets and natural food stores. For the infertile couple, arriving at this diagnosis may be painful, a hoop that a lot of men don't feel that they can jump through. Masturbate in a little room at the doctors' office into a white plastic cup, and not spill, how romantic, how degrading. Then to top it off, having the beautiful lab tech sitting at her microscope counting the millions or the lack thereof, can be embarrasing. We are men, are we not? We don't need to subject ourselves to this measure of machismo. Yet more and more do and have to. It is a job to be done. The joy of that first little league home run, or ballet recital hangs in the distance.
Sperm factor infertility is prevalent and is a couples issue, as well as a man's quagmire. With the rampant infertility in today's society, there is more to treating this problem than just not wearing tight nylon underwear and changing to cotton boxer shorts. Heat is not the ideal climate for spermatogenesis (sperm creation) and the generation of happy, healthy, strong and fit swimmers.
Forget the hot showers and tubs as they can harm the sperm for even several weeks. Eliminate the recreational drugs, and alcohol. Marijuana puts the sperm to sleep and also makes them lazy when they wake up, not to mention genetic abnormalities that can happen for high volumn chronic smokers. This is not just like the effect in your body of when you drink and have a hangover. THC can stay in the fat cells of the body for years. Staying cool has now to be recognized as having a whole different meaning. Keeping your genitals cool and your consciousness hip with out smoking may not be easy. What can be done about this issue and how does one do it?
First of all, sperm factor infertility is not a simple problem to remedy even with the best alternative medicines, herbs, exercises, martial arts, marital arts, massage, homeopathic, diet, chiropractic or acupuncture. Sperm deficiencies and abnormalities are difficult to fix with any style of medicine. Sperm and ovum are the quintessential genetic representation of the species upon conception, birth, life and the eventual death.
Up for the challenge of change?
If you are a candidate for alternative medicine, and most people are, and are willing to try, maybe it will work for you. The difference will be made in the level of commitment to change and the art of the medicine that you choose as the patient. You have to be proactive and often be willing to alter deeply grooved lifestyle habits. The diagnostic and treatment ability of the practitioner has to be extraordinary, the right herbs, diet and treatment plan has to be activiated precisely. Last but not least there has to be the blessing of the Gods.
Treatments for semen problems take a minimum of 100 days before you see even perhaps the tinniest indication of change. It takes time and patience, so dig in. What is in the ejaculate today was generated three months ago. Since men usually can't tell what their sperm count, motility, or morphology is, checking for change shouldn't start till at least 4 months of diligent weekly acupuncture treatment and daily herb taking. When indicated, which it usually is (in men over 35), semen analysis should be done with at least 3 days abstention and not more than 5 days.
Spring and fall yield the highest sperm amounts. So clean up your diet this season for the next. Also, ladies, a recent study has found that diet and lifestyle can effect the generation of eggs three months previous. So, the egg that is ovulated this month has been in process for over three months. So, quit smoking and alcohol imbibing now. It makes sence, that our body has seasons as does nature around us.
THE IMPORTANCE OF DIET
You are what you eat, garbage in garbage out. You have heard it all, or maybe not. Eat right for your blood type, blah blah blah. Garbage in garbage out, again. So, if you want to build the best you have to use the best materials. After all you want the healthiest, smartest, brightest kid on the block, right? Organic food is the least your body deserves. You wouldn't put bad gas into the car, would you? Your diet matters, as everybody has to eat.
What about your mental diet? How's that? Being a fuming, angry, misogynistic, egotistical dastardly kind of person is not the path of righteousness so to speak, that makes healthy well adjusted children. Clean up your mental attitude, language and habits, just like you would wash your car on Saturday so that you can take your wife out on a date to the movies. Do your workouts, running, yoga, Tai Chi, Hung Gar or whatever. Train with imagination and verve, your event is to have a conscious conception, and a healthy child. You can't fake it or cheat, you have to do your homework. You will succeed, as men have succeeded before.
How does your Spirit check out? When was the last time your went to your church, synagogue, mosque, temple, tee pee, yoga retreat or even just sat quietly, breathed and contemplated the divine? How are you going to raise your children? Every word you say means something to them, for better or for worse. Is your Spirit quotient something that you ever think about? Laughter is a great medicine, one of the best. Can you laugh at yourself and not mope around because something didn't go your way, like the last semen analysis? Acknowledge the deficiency, do something about it, and move on.
Change the energy, do twenty push ups, fifty sit ups, or the first section of the sword set from your martial arts class, the yoga sun salute. Do something to train yourself so that when you have sleep deprivation with your newborn, and he or she cries yet again, you remember what its' all about. Be proactive rather than reactive. The Taoists (Daoists) physicians that aspire to practice from a higher spiritual connection, who, by their individual practice, water the roots of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), say that you can be a master of your own destiny, so go for it. You are the best, so be the best.
Acupuncture and Oriental medicine is an art and a science that takes years to master. Look for an acupuncturist with experience in the treatment of low sperm count on www.Acufinder.com
About the Author
Dr. Roger C. Hirsh, OMD, L.Ac. holds a doctorate in oriental medicine, and is a licensed and practicing acupuncturist and herbalist. He has practiced whole person medicine, and taught Tai Chi Chuan in Europe and Mexico for several years before returning to America in 1978. For the last 20 years he has worked to establish the specialization of regenerative health care within the conventional western medical model and to integrate diverse Eastern and Western medical traditions in this work. As an Honors graduate of the International College of Oriental Medicine (B.Ac.)(London,1976), he received his Doctorate in Oriental Medicine (O.M.D.)(1984) with a specialty in Constitutional Medicine. After a 3,000 hour postgraduate internship he joined the Center for Orthomolecular Medicine in Palo Alto, California (1982) where he practiced acupuncture and herbal medicine for several years as a member of a six physician team that established leading protocols for holistic medicine. It was within this period of time that Dr. Hirsh served as an adjunct faculty member of the American College of Traditional Chinese Medicine, the California Acupuncture College and Emperor's College of Traditional Chinese Medicine and was one of the founders and secretary of the California Acupuncture Association.
After being involved with educating novice acupuncturists he became one of only three expert examiners for the California state medical licensing of acupuncturists. While working the acupuncture examinations there were many acupuncture techniques and herbal secrets shared from Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese and European traditions. During this twelve year period, Dr. Hirsh helped establish an evaluation by the California State Acupuncture Committee, and the National Commission for the Certification of Acupuncturists (NCCA) of nontraditional medical techniques. Concurrently, he was trained in ancient rejuvenative techniques such as medical Qi Kung and martial arts, as well as cosmetic acupuncture and herbal procedures involving facial rejuvenation and body sculpting. It was as early as 1974 when he was studying with the famous Russian physician, Dr. Mickael Santaro O.M.D. (China), that he realized how dramatically one could change a persons' body with herbs and acupuncture.