How does smoking affect fertility? When it comes to making a baby, we all know it takes two to tango. But that’s not just in the bedroom. Many other factors – like diet, drinking alcohol and smoking – affect fertility and the likelihood of the magic happening. Parents-to-be often ask me what they can do to increase their chances of conceiving. I touch on a few key things in this video about preparing for your first fertility consult. Let’s take a moment here to look at how smoking affects fertility in a little more detail.
How does smoking affect fertility in women?
There’s no shying away from the evidence: studies show that smoking leads to an earlier menopause and reduces the number of eggs being produced. So if you’re experiencing challenges in getting pregnant, it’s important to quit smoking as soon as possible to boost your chances of conceiving.
I also recommend that you avoid alcohol and reduce caffeine, and make sure you’re getting enough nutrients in your diet by eating plenty of fruit, vegetables, and whole grains. Read more about my diet advice for conception.
Quitting cigarettes is not just for the ladies
Does smoking affect fertility in men as well? It certainly can do. Cigarettes have been shown to cause low sperm counts in men, even affecting the shape of sperm and how they move around. In fact if a man smokes, his offspring have a much higher chance of childhood cancers. So it’s important for the man in the relationship to quit too – especially, at the very least, while you’re trying to conceive.
Alcohol, that other old chestnut
Now that you have read how smoking affects fertility, it’s important to also look at the impacts of how drinking alcohol affects fertility. For both of you, it’s important to limit the amount you’re drinking in order to help you conceive. Drinking – certainly, on a daily basis – can lead to fertility problems in both men and women.
Is now too late to quit?
Stopping a long-standing habit is much easier said than done. But I’m a firm believer that there’s no better time than the present.
Wherever you are in your journey to parenthood, making a few healthy changes now can really increase your chances of the baby you’re dreaming of.