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What's wrong with tighty whities?

Off the back of Testicular Cancer Awareness Month I have some fun facts about testicular health. This is relevant for anyone trying to conceive the healthiest offspring possible. Sperm is 50% of the equation after all.

Testicles are like tiny little factories who’s one job is to make sperm, a LOT of sperm. The average bloke will make around 1500 every second thats 90,000 per minute, 130 million a day. And YES, tight undies and jeans do affect those numbers! A study in 2018 found that men who wear boxers have a 25% higher sperm concentration and 17% higher total sperm count than those who are into their ‘tighty whities’.

Makes you appreciate just how remarkable conception is when you realise it takes only 1 sperm to fertilise an egg but a man has to ejaculate somewhere between 40 and 100 million of them each time in the hopes that just one will do the job.

The reason the testicles are outside the body is so that those sperm can survive they need to be between 2.5 and 3 degrees cooler than the rest of the body in order for them to be preserved. So the scrotum, the wrinkley sac of skin the testicles live in, will clock in at around 34 degrees while the rest of the body sits at around 37. There are muscles in there too and their job is to make sure that the testicles are either closer or far enough away from the body to maintain that temperature difference. That’s why they shrink right up when men jump into cold water.

Testicles can vary in shape and size but generally the one on the left will hang lower than the one on the right. Again, it’s for temperature control and means if one is right on the mark, the other one needing to change to match it, won’t make the one that’s good suffer.

Apparently they hurt quite a lot when they get even the tiniest knock. And the reason they do, is so that men will care enough to look after them. They’ve evolved to have a tonne of tiny nerves so that they are super sensitive to pain. They are so sensitive that even if the man senses pain might be coming, they will shrink up closer to the body for protection. So...with so much going on down there what can go wrong you may ask?

There is so much that can go wrong and unfortunately male factor infertility is higher than ever before. Get those testicles and sperm checked boys. Just like women checking their breasts for irregularities, boys need to do the same, regularly. If anything doesn't feel right, off to the GP immediately. Getting a sperm analysis should be a fairly easy process and is also done through the GP.

Also know that we are here for support and advice, right on your doorstep (or via Zoom if required).

Petra xx

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