Indore: Much to the concern for smokers, a recent study stated that active smokers were 14 per cent more likely to be infertile and 26 per cent
more likely to have early menopause as compared to the non smokers. The study was conducted by reproductive medicine experts and sample space were the people from various states. According to reproductive medicine expert, Dr Nikita Rawal the results of the study may vary according to region or state, but the results are close to the overall analysis.
“Tobacco consumption in any form can have not only adverse effect on general health, but also hamper fertility up to a large extent. A large population of Indian men is addicted to tobacco chewing and smoking. According to the study the corelation between tobacco consumption and infertility is strong and well established,” she said. Dr Rawal also said that smokeless tobacco products available in the market in varied forms like khaini, gutkha, and betel are also equally known to reduce fertility in males. Talking about the effects of smoking on pregnancy, the senior consultant said, not only direct smoking, even the second hand smoke too can affect ones fertility.
“Second hand smoke is also a known cause of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). If you become pregnant, you and your partner must stop
smoking to protect the health of your baby,” Dr Rawal advised. Sharing the problems in men due to smoking, Dr Rawal said, “Smoking damages
the DNA in sperms, making them less likely to fertilise eggs. The embryos they create are less likely to survive. Tobacco and areca nut chewing, hookah and pan masala leads to impaired fertility, still births, miscarriages, chromosomal abnormalities in babies.
Pan masala produces acidity in the body and many sperms die due to it. Nicotine or substance abuse by men can have harmful effects on foetus and cause considerable damage.” She added that at least, 40 per cent men, who are diagnosed with low sperm counts and more importantly, lesser motility of sperm, have been found to be regular users of tobacco, either in chewing or smoking form. Earlier, it was 30 million sperm counts, which has now dropped to 20 million.