International Men’s Day: Infertility in men linked to serious mental health disorders

International Men’s Day: Infertility in men linked to serious mental health disorders

Since the beginning of their adolescent years, men are taught to act and behave tough and conceal their emotions. They are supposed to never cry and hence, rarely whisper about their pent up emotions. Unfortunately, when it comes to infertility issues, even a whisper is replaced by a painful silence, which in the long run affects their mental and physical health.

Infertility greatly affects their self-esteem, sex life, career, relationships and the overall quality of life. In an attempt to focus on men’s health, disseminate awareness about gender inequality and discrimination, and encourage them to celebrate their contributions to family and community every year, International Men’s Day (IMD) is observed on November 19. The theme for this year is ‘Celebrate Men and Boys’.

Survey findings

A recent survey conducted by Leeds Beckett University and Fertility Network UK revealed that men, as much as women, are highly affected by their inability to procreate. The survey comprised 41 men who were trying to reproduce for the past five years. Ninety-three percent of the subjects shared that they felt angered and jealous on seeing other couples with children, which caused stress, anxiety and depression. Support for men is scarce because infertility is usually labeled as a female concern. Lack of emotional support, insensitivity from health care professionals and marginalization cause isolation and affect their sex life.

The survey revealed a dire need of instituting support and resources for addressing the mental health concerns of men struggling with infertility and other issues.

One way of coping with emotional stress is by practicing some strategies, some of which are given below:

  1. Getting a diagnosis: This is the foremost step in understanding the root cause of the problem. Instead of constantly thinking and making assumptions, a couple must see a specialist and get tested to identify the problem. Based on that, one can explore options such as in-vitro fertilization (IVF), intrauterine insemination, donor sperm and surrogacy. A couple must decide on the timelines for trying a specific procedure and must take stock of their finances.
  2. Focussing on self: None of the treatments can yield positive results if one doesn’t focus on health. This can be done by eating healthy diet, such as fresh fruits, green leafy vegetables, and essential minerals and vitamins. Engaging in a physical activity each day keeps the weight in control. It’s equally important to abstain from harmful substances like smoking, alcohol and drugs.
  3. Striving to be stress-free: A growing body of literature has established an association between infertility and stress in males, therefore, it is indispensable to remain stress-free. This can be done by practicing yoga, meditation and some mindful techniques. Going on small vacations with the partner strengthens the bond and refreshes the mind. Additionally, connecting with online and offline support groups can also add a lot of positivity and optimism in life.

Men need mental health treatment too

Infertility affects men not just physically but also emotionally and mentally however, one must take this in his stride and keep putting efforts to combat it. One must keep stress levels in check and keep the communication channels open. If nothing helps, one must seek professional support immediately.

Mental health problems can afflict anyone at any point of time. Sovereign Health not only help people get rid of acute and chronic psychiatric illnesses but also supports them during the rehabilitation process. Call our 24/7 helpline 866-973-7164 to know about our mental health facilities in California offering comprehensive treatment plans for mental disorders like depression and anxiety. You can get in touch with a representative for more information about our mental health rehabilitation centers in California.

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