Sexual function often decreases with age. Decrease in the frequency of having sex, erectile dysfunction, lowering sperm quality and quantity, and increased risk of certain disorders in children born to older males are reasons that might make it difficult to conceive a pregnancy at an advanced age. In such cases, sperm freezing can offer a good chance to men who are looking to have babies later in life.
Why Opt for Sperm Freezing?
Like women, men too suffer from decreasing fertility at an advanced age, especially after 40. Semen quality declines, with sperm concentration, sperm motility, and physiology being affected negatively. Also, there is an increased risk of autism and schizophrenia in children born to males in older adulthood. Considering these biological issues, if a male wishes to still have babies later in life, it is advisable to go for sperm freezing through cryopreservation as early in life as possible.
Apart from this, there are other reasons why sperm freezing can offer a male the chance to have his own children at a later time.
If the male is diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, testicular or prostate cancer, the treatment may involve the removal of one or both testes. Other cancer treatments like radiation or chemotherapy may also have a damaging impact on sperm quality. In such cases, sperm freezing prior to treatment helps store the male’s sperm for future use.
If a male is undergoing a medical procedure – to treat a condition that may severely impact his ability to produce good quality sperm, a gender reassignment surgery, or vasectomy – sperm freezing can help preserve his chances of having a baby later in life.
For men who work at sites where chances of accidents are high, or where some kind of chemical exposure may impact their sperm quality, they should investigate the possibility of freezing their sperm. Also, men in the armed forces where the risk of severe injury or death is high can opt for sperm freezing.
If the male partner has a very low sperm count, it is advisable to freeze his sperm sample prior to an IVF procedure. This is to ensure that sperm is available in case the fresh sample procured on the day of the procedure has no sperm in it.
What Does Sperm Freezing Entail?
Sperm banking can be an extremely personal decision. If the man is married or in a relationship, it is advisable to have the partner be involved in the decision.
The first thing is to finalize the sperm bank or fertility center for sperm banking. At Dreams Fertility, we not only provide sperm banking services but also provide the physician recommendation needed for cryopreservation of sperm.
Prior to sperm banking, the individual is screened for sexually transmitted diseases. A semen analysis is also performed to assess the quality and quantity of sperm in the semen. Once the semen sample is collected, it is assessed to determine volume, pH, liquefaction time, sperm count, sperm vitality and motility, morphology, and any abnormalities. If you are searching for “semen analysis near me,” at Dreams Fertility, we perform all kinds of fertility testing, including genetic testing, to ensure that risks in your fertility journey are reduced as much as possible.
We also make the entire process completely private as it can be embarrassing and overwhelming for a lot of individuals.
Next is paperwork. The individual will have to sign forms and consent forms for testing and diagnosis, along with authorizing the sperm bank to act in accordance with their wishes in case of their untimely death. A contract is signed, sometimes in the presence of a notary public or a witness.
On the day of sample collection, the individual will be asked to collect the semen sample in a private room in the fertility clinic or lab. This is recommended since the time gap between sample collection and freezing affects the quality and viability of the sperm. A sterile cup is provided for sample collection through masturbation.
However, if for some reason, you wish to collect the semen sample at home, you should do so in a sterile container provided by the clinic or sperm bank using a clinic-provided lubricant (if need be). Some clinics may also provide a special condom to collect the semen sample during intercourse. You must ensure that the sample reaches the facility as soon as possible, ideally within the hour, and is kept at body temperature.
Once the sample is collected, it is handed over to the lab technician who processes it further. Be sure to bring your photo ID because fertility practices will only accept sperm if proof of identification is confirmed. A semen analysis to check sperm count and quality will determine if more sample is needed. In case there is no sperm found in the ejaculate, surgical retrieval of sperm from the testis is done.
A cryoprotectant is then added to the semen sample to prevent sperm cells from physical damage during rapid freezing. The sample is usually divided between multiple vials and then frozen in liquid nitrogen.
While the standard period of sperm banking is usually ten years, you may store it for as long as you wish, provided you keep paying for the annual storage. You may also terminate your storage agreement with the sperm bank through written consent. On average, it costs around $1000 for testing and freezing for the first year. Every subsequent year will cost from $250 to $ $500 in storage fees.
Should Men Freeze Their Sperm if They Are Planning to Have Children After 40?
Ideally, any healthy male can freeze their sperm if they aren’t sure about the course their lives will take in the future. However, men who are focusing on other things in life – personal and professional development – and wish to have children later in life, maybe after 40 years, should freeze their sperm. This will help them cut down significantly on the risks of low fertility due to declining sperm quality and the risk of certain diseases that may affect their children.
Sperm freezing is a procedure that has been perfected for more than 75 years and is very effective. On average, half of the sperm do not survive the freezing process. However, for IVF, only a few million motile sperm are required to fertilize an egg. If even that is not possible, another advanced procedure called intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) requires only a single sperm cell to fertilize an egg and produce an embryo.
The freezing-thawing process has no effect on the efficiency of sperm cells. In fact, there is no difference between the fertilization capacity of cryopreserved sperm compared to fresh sperm. Also, research has found no risk of any diseases or health problems in children who were conceived using frozen sperm.
Trick Your Biological Clock: Bank Your Sperm Today
Had it not been for the advances in fertility technologies, millions of people would have found it extremely difficult to have children. While assisted reproductive technologies like in vitro fertilization and others have made achieving pregnancy easy, sperm freezing helps men trick their biological clocks by effectively preserving their fertility for later use in life.
Dreams Fertility is a premier fertility clinic serving all of Coachella Valley, CA. We use customized fertility treatment strategies for every case and help you achieve the dream of welcoming a baby in your life, regardless of your sexual choices. For men who want to preserve their fertility, we offer all kinds of services – from expert guidance to testing and sperm cryopreservation. When you are ready to welcome a child, we use your sperm to perform advanced ARTs that we have perfected through our years of expertise and experience helping thousands of infertile couples bring joy to their lives.
To know more about our services, visit our site. If you are ready to avail of any of our services, please schedule a consult with a Dreams Fertility physician today. Be sure to ask about our special semen analysis promotion price.
Dr. Luis Murrain joined Dreams Fertility in 2021, providing specialty services in Fertility and Reproductive Genetics. With a shared vision that everyone deserves to have the family of their dreams, we are dedicated to helping all of our patients. We believe that families come in all shapes and sizes, and all of them are beautiful. We are proud to have a long history of providing services to all, including gay, lesbian, and transgender individuals and couples on their road to parenthood.