Sperm Count: Sperm count likely to be impacted due to high mobile phone use: Study

NEW DELHI: A recent study has delved into the potential link between mobile phone usage and declining male sperm count. Global sperm counts have seen a significant decline of over 50% in the last half-century, sparking concerns among researchers who aim to pinpoint the contributing factors, reported CNN.
The study focused on young men aged 18 to 22 and revealed that those who used their mobile phones more than 20 times a day had a 21% higher risk of having a low overall sperm count.Additionally, this group showed a 30% higher risk of having a low sperm concentration, which is an essential parameter for measuring sperm count within a millilitre of semen. The study did not distinguish between phone usage methods, whether calls, texts, or both.
However, there is a silver lining to this concern. As phone technology has evolved and improved over the 13-year study period, the adverse impact on sperm count has gradually lessened.
“I am intrigued by the observation that the biggest effect was apparently seen with older 2G and 3G phones compared to modern 4G and 5G versions. This is not something I am able to explain,” Allan Pacey, deputy vice president and deputy dean of the faculty of biology, medicine and health at the University of Manchester in the United Kingdom, told CNN.
“Whilst sperm numbers matter, the ability of sperm to swim, have healthy intact DNA and be the right shape, is at least as important,” said Alison Campbell, chief scientific officer of Care Fertility, a network of fertility clinics, told the network.
“This is a fascinating and novel study which should not cause alarm or drastic changes in habits. “Men looking to conceive, or wanting to improve their sperm health should exercise (but not overheat in their groin area), eat a balanced diet, maintain a healthy weight, avoid smoking and limit alcohol and seek help if they are having problems conceiving,” Campbell added.
Campbell and Pacey were not part of the study.
Mobile phones unquestionably have become an integral part of modern life, but they also emit low-level radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (RF-EMF), which has raised questions about their potential health implications.
A recent study suggests that when cell phones operate at maximum power, the surrounding tissues can experience a temperature rise of up to 0.5 degrees Celsius (approximately 33 degrees Fahrenheit).
The intensity of radiofrequency electromagnetic fields can vary depending on the phone’s usage. These fields are considerably reduced during activities like texting but reach their peak when downloading large files or streaming audio or video, especially when the phone displays only one or two signal bars.
Additionally, high exposure to these fields occurs when using mobile phones on fast-moving vehicles such as buses, cars, or trains, as stated by the California Department of Public Health.
Experts recommend that individuals maintain a safe distance between their phones and their bodies and heads. Instead, it suggests using the speakerphone or headphones to reduce direct contact.
Moreover, it is advisable to carry the phone in a backpack, briefcase, or purse to mitigate exposure.
However, the potential impact of these electromagnetic fields on male fertility has remained a topic of controversy and discussion within the scientific community for several years.

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