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Can Depression Damage Your Reproductive Health?

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Infertility impacts men in several ways. While the most common being with an infertile woman, there are instances where erectile dysfunction psychological causes play a role.

Enter depression!

Among a majority of couples treated for infertility, depression in the male partner was linked to infertility in the female partner. 

What Is Depression?

This medical illness affects how you feel, think, and act. It carries feelings of sadness and a loss of interest in activities you once enjoyed. It results in emotional and psychological problems that can decrease your ability to function either at work or home. 

While no research studies directly point to depression as a cause of sterility in men, there is a correlation between depression, erectile dysfunction, and infertility. 

Some theories state that this occurs because of an overlap in the hormones that cause both of these conditions. Also, depression can lead to habits like drinking and smoking that can negatively impact your reproductive health. Premature ejaculation in men may also lead to depression, however, it can be controlled effectively with delay sprays. So, premature ejaculation and depression are positively correlated too

When you’re depressed, your body will go into fight or flight mode. In other words, it will not function as it is supposed to. This is detrimental to your overall being, including your reproductive health. 

Depression shuts down hypothalamic activity that controls the reproductive system. This will disrupt the connection between your brain and your reproductive organs, decrease your libido or cause low sperm count. 

Remember, there is an everlasting relationship between semen parameters and psychological stress. Anything that occurs in between will result in a fall in testosterone levels. 

Depression affects the overall body. Therefore, navigating fertility can be especially stressful. When depressed, you are more likely to have no sexual desire for your partner, offering lesser chances for a sperm and an egg to meet. 

In this case, the nervous system produces catecholamines such as dopamine and norepinephrine. This reduces blood flow to your reproductive organs. 

Can Managing Depression Better Your Reproductive Health?

No scientific study proves that mindful practices and psychological interventions will improve your reproductive health. However, the following ways are scientifically true:

  • Managing your symptoms of depression will have a positive impact on your reproductive health

By indulging in different mind-body exercises such as yoga and cognitive behavioral therapy, you can take control of your stress levels and put your body at ease. Ultimately, the body will sense a serene environment and continue working like it is supposed to. 

Since poor reproductive health is a common sign of depression, it is important to indulge in beneficial practices for your body.

  • The “right” amount of exercise will boost fertility

Exercise plays an important role in reproductive health. It lowers stress levels while boosting fertility. Working out for one to five hours every week will positively impact your reproductive health. So how about a walk or a 30-minute jog daily?

  • Support from your partner will reduce emotional distress and better your sex life

When dealing with depression, surrounding yourself with those who love you will ease the burden. This will reduce stress levels in your body and make room for reproductive hormones. Support from your partner betters your reproductive health almost instantaneously.

  • Seeking help goes a long way in getting you better

Like with most things, you cannot do it alone. Reach out to a health provider or therapist and discuss your issues with your reproductive health. You can acquire medication and any other form of support.

Your body works against you to protect you when going through depression. While the condition is more complex than this, it needs immediate attention to create harmony in the body and work at its best. 


Image by Stephanie Pratt from Pixabay

When it’s all said and done – having a child is a major transition in any man’s or woman’s adult life. Men who do not fulfill this desire due to depression generally lead unhappy lives.

They experience a sense of loss and low self-esteem due to erectile dysfunction, which may lead to infertility. Depression can be frustrating as you try to build the family you want. But don’t despair. You can get help. 

So, the answer to the question is- YES.

Depression can damage your reproductive health!