The Miscarriage Risk No One Talks About: Poor Sperm Quality

April 30, 2024
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Miscarriage is a devastating experience for any couple hoping to start a family. While it’s often assumed that miscarriages are primarily due to issues with the woman’s health, emerging research suggests that sperm quality plays a significant role in pregnancy success. In this article, we’ll explore how various aspects of sperm health can impact the risk of miscarriage and what men can do to improve their sperm quality to help you get AND stay pregnant.

DNA Fragmentation:

DNA fragmentation occurs when the genetic material within sperm becomes damaged.

DNA fragmentation in sperm refers to the presence of breaks or damage in the DNA strands within the sperm cells. This damage can occur during the process of sperm production (spermatogenesis) or due to external factors such as oxidative stress, environmental toxins, or infections. High levels of DNA fragmentation in sperm have been associated with a variety of negative outcomes, including reduced fertility and an increased risk of miscarriage.

When sperm with fragmented DNA fertilize an egg, the damaged DNA can be passed on to the embryo, potentially leading to developmental abnormalities and an increased risk of miscarriage. Additionally, sperm with high levels of DNA fragmentation may have reduced ability to fertilize an egg successfully, further impacting fertility.

Reducing DNA fragmentation in sperm is an important goal for couples trying to conceive, as it can improve the chances of a successful pregnancy. Lifestyle changes, such as quitting smoking, reducing alcohol intake, and maintaining a healthy diet and weight, can help reduce DNA damage in sperm. Antioxidant supplements, such as vitamin C, vitamin E, and coenzyme Q10, may also be beneficial in reducing oxidative stress and protecting sperm DNA integrity.

You can find my optimizing sperm health protocol in my Fullscript Dispensary

Other aspects of sperm quality that can impact fertility, miscarriages, and genetic abnormalities in babies. 

Sperm Morphology:

Sperm morphology refers to the size and shape of sperm. Abnormalities in morphology can hinder sperm’s ability to fertilize an egg, increasing the risk of miscarriage.  

Decreased Sperm Count:

A low sperm count, known as oligospermia, can make it more difficult for couples to conceive and increase the risk of miscarriage. 

Decreased Sperm Mobility and Vitality:

Sperm mobility, or the ability of sperm to move effectively, is crucial for fertilization. Low sperm mobility, known as asthenospermia, can reduce the likelihood of successful fertilization and increase the risk of miscarriage.

Endocrine Dysfunction:

Endocrine disorders, such as hypogonadism, low testosterone, or thyroid dysfunction, can affect hormone levels and sperm production, increasing the risk of miscarriage. 

Anatomical Abnormalities:

Anatomical abnormalities, such as varicoceles or blockages in the reproductive tract, can interfere with sperm production and transport, increasing the risk of miscarriage. Surgical interventions may be necessary to correct these issues and improve fertility.

Immunological Factors:

Immunological factors, such as autoimmune disorders, can lead to an immune response against sperm or the developing embryo, increasing the risk of miscarriage. 


Infections, such as sexually transmitted infections (STIs), can damage sperm and increase the risk of miscarriage. Men should practice safe sex and seek treatment for any infections to protect their fertility and reduce the risk of pregnancy complications.

Oxidative Stress:

Oxidative stress occurs when there is an imbalance between antioxidants and free radicals in the body, leading to cellular damage. High levels of oxidative stress can damage sperm DNA and increase the risk of miscarriage. Men can reduce oxidative stress by consuming antioxidant-rich foods and avoiding exposure to environmental toxins.

Electromagnetic fields (EMFs) are a form of non-ionizing radiation emitted by electronic devices such as cell phones, laptops, and Wi-Fi routers. There is growing concern that exposure to EMFs may have detrimental effects on sperm quality and male fertility. Research suggests that prolonged exposure to EMFs may lead to increased oxidative stress in the body, which can damage sperm cells and their DNA. This damage can result in reduced sperm motility, viability, and morphology, all of which as you read above are important factors for male fertility. I love using Defender Shield and WaveBlock products to help reduce EMF exposure but its also good to keep your cell phone away from your body and reduce use of devices when possible!

What Men Can Do:

  • Maintain a healthy lifestyle, including a balanced diet, regular exercise, and adequate sleep.
  • Avoid exposure to environmental toxins, such as tobacco smoke, pesticides, EMFs, and pollutants.
  • Manage stress through relaxation techniques, such as breathwork, meditation, yoga, and set boundaries around work.
  • Limit alcohol consumption and avoid recreational drug use.
  • Stay hydrated and maintain a healthy body weight.

If you got this far, you can clearly see how sperm quality plays a crucial role in the success of a pregnancy. By making healthy lifestyle choices and seeking appropriate medical care, men can improve their sperm quality and increase their chances of a successful pregnancy. 

If you and your partner are struggling with fertility issues or want to optimize your health and fertility for a healthy pregnancy, consider joining “It Takes Two: The Ultimate Fertility Program.” In this program, I work with both partners to assess and address any underlying health issues, optimize fertility, and support you on your journey to parenthood. Together, we can increase your chances of getting and staying pregnant with a healthy pregnancy, labor, postpartum, and baby! Schedule your FREE Fertility Discovery Call today! 

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