Recent studies have shown that using smartphones at night might affect sperm quality in men of all ages. So, the next time you are tempted to bring your phone to bed, be sure to think twice about it: it could be doing you a lot more harm than you realize.
Today, we hope to help you understand how and why exactly this happens and recognize the danger of using your devices at night to male fertility issues. We have put together an illustration of how screen use at night affects your sperm quality. We hope you find it informative.
What exactly affects your sperm quality?
Recent studies have shown a correlation between the use of smartphones at night and a decline in sperm quality and lower sperm count. The reason for this is still mainly guesswork. Still, the study was carried out on men ages 21 to 59, and there is an apparent connection between using electronics at night and a decline in sperm quality and a lower sperm count.
While the older men in this group can expect this, among other body changes men over 40 can experience, the results were comparable with younger men. On the other hand, men who didn’t have the habit of using their various devices in bed and a few hours before going to sleep were proven to have much healthier sperm and larger semen volume.
However, it is important to note that the study didn’t take into account other important lifestyle choices of the tested men. As such, more research is needed into the topic of phone use at night and male infertility.
Frequent exposure to light from a digital screen at night has shown an obvious correlation to a reduction in sperm quality.
1. What changes with your sperm quality?
The answer to how screen use at night affects your sperm quality and low sperm count is that it reduces sperm motility and concentration. Sperm motility is the ability of your sperm to “swim” properly, while sperm concentration is how much sperm you produce overall.
The study showed that frequent use of any light-emitting device, particularly past the time you usually go to sleep, negatively impacts these factors. In addition, men who use their devices late into the night, also reported sleepiness during the day, which is another suspected reason for the reduced sperm quality lower semen volume, which can negatively impact sperm quality. Over time this can potentially lead to infertility in men.
While there obviously could be other causes of low sperm count in the men who participated in the study, the correlation between screen use at night and lower quality sperm couldn’t be ignored.
2. Screen use and lack of sleep
This study also showed a correlation between lack of sleep and lower sperm quality. Of the tested men, the ones with longer and more regular sleeping patterns had larger semen volume, which us closely correlated to much better sperm motility and concentration.
As such, we can safely assume that sleeping well is also beneficial for the quality of your sperm. But, why is this? Well, evening and nighttime exposure to SWL (short-wavelength light) from digital screens suppress melatonin, a hormone that helps you fall asleep.
Accordingly, it’s safe to assume that screen use during the night also affects your sleep pattern negatively, which is another reason to avoid it entirely.
Using a digital screen should be approached the same way as drinking coffee: it should be in moderation. If not, you are exposing yourself to health risks that you are much better off avoiding entirely.
Using a digital screen at night disrupts melatonin, which is very important for quality sleep.
3. How do you combat Low Sperm Quality?
Because smartphones are quite useful, you might find yourself asking: how do I avoid these issues? Well, it’s quite simple: proper time management when it comes to using your devices.
Additionally, a generally healthier lifestyle will also contribute to combating the effects of screen use at night. Sleeping correctly and for enough time, for one, is a great way to start. So, start with a makeover of your daily routine and go from there.
There are also natural remedies that can help the quality of your sperm improve over time. And, in general, try to avoid screen use after evening altogether. If you need to use your devices for something important, it shouldn’t be a problem.
It should be fine as long as the screen use isn’t prolonged and doesn’t interfere with your sleep schedule or quality of life. Just remember to keep it as brief as possible.
4. Potential issues with the study
While the study results do show clear signs that screen use at night affects sperm quality and volume of sperm, the doctors involved warn that the study was conducted on a specialized group of men in an infertility center. This means the results could have trouble translating onto the general population.
However, the study has proven that short-wavelength light exposure at night is an endocrine disruption, which is a prime suspect in the cause of sperm quality decline, and can lead to male infertility issues. While the topic does require more study, it is conclusive that screen use at night is harmful.
Consider restricting your screen use to daytime for the time being. At the very least, until more conclusive evidence shows up.
While the current evidence is hard to dispute, it has to be noted that the topic still isn’t very well explored.
Wrap Up – How screen use at night affects your sperm quality
Long story short, using a digital screen at night does affect you negatively. Not only does it reduce the quality of your sperm, but it also disturbs your sleeping schedule by disrupting melatonin.
A lack of sleep has been proven to reduce the quality of your sperm further, and increase infertility in men. So, messing with your sleep schedule by using a smartphone at night is a bad idea.
And while there are ways to combat these effects, we recommend avoiding the problem entirely. We hope you found this explanation of how screen use at night affects your sperm quality informative.
Tom Richards is an expert in men’s physical health and has a passion for helping other men stay healthy even as they grow older.
He has been writing for various platforms related to men’s health and wellness for over 10 years. In his free time, Tom likes to hike and does cross-fit enthusiastically.