A new study has revealed that in less than 30 years we might all need the assistance of IVF to be able to conceive.
A new research conducted by leading professor of environmental medicine and public health at School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Shanna Swan, believes that a large majority of couples will require assisted reproduction by 2045.
A concerning decline
After a previous study in which she worked on revealed that sperm counts had declined by more than half in the last 40 years, the researcher is now saying that in less than three decades conceiving naturally will be almost impossible. Dr. Swan says that:
It is serious. If you follow the curve from the 2017 sperm-decline meta-analysis, it predicts that by 2045 we will have a median sperm count of zero.
It is speculative to extrapolate, but there is also no evidence that it is tapering off. This means that most couples may have to use assisted reproduction.
Toxic chemicals responsible for lower sperm counts
Swan explained that the reason for this rapid decline in sperm counts is due to the chemicals found in everyday household objects that we consume. The group of chemicals are called phthalates and are found in packaged foods, pharmaceuticals, detergents, nail polish, hairsprays and so on.
This chemical is particular damaging on men's testosterone levels which is the hormone responsible for the production of sperm. She also explains that:
People are recognising we have a reproductive health crisis, but they say it's because of delayed childbearing, choice or lifestyle - it can't be chemical. I want people to recognise it can.
Dr. Swan believes that we must raise awareness of this issue in order to assure the survival of our species:
I am not saying other factors aren't involved. But I am saying chemicals play a major causal role. It is difficult to use that word, 'cause', but it's a body of evidence. We have mechanisms, animal studies, and multiple human studies.