Can Your Cell Phone Cause Infertility?

Reviewed by Jeremie Walker, MD, MBA · February 28, 2023
cell phone infertility

On average, Americans spend approximately 5 hours per day using their cell phones, and when they are not actively using them, they tend to keep them nearby, often in their pockets. Unfortunately, carrying a cell phone in your pocket can harm your sperm count and overall health. Keep reading to learn more about the possible link between your cell phone and infertility and what you can do about it. 

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What the Science Says About the Link Between Your Cell Phone & Infertility

In short: carrying a cell phone in your pocket can impact fertility. And while your smartphone probably won’t render you sterile, it can affect the quantity and quality of your sperm. 

A 2020 review published in The Journal of Human Reproductive Sciences looked at studies from 2003 to 2020 that investigated the effects of mobile phone use on male fertility. The studies found that mobile phones and other electronics can reduce sperm motility, cause structural damage, and increase oxidative stress. These effects are linked to scrotal hyperthermia and worsen with prolonged mobile phone use.

So what is the mechanism involved between your cell phone and infertility? Mobile phones produce energy called electromagnetic radiation (EMR), which can affect the male reproductive system in two ways: by heating the tissues or through non-thermal effects. This radiation can harm the testicular functions that are important for testosterone and sperm production.

Studies have shown that when human semen is exposed to EMR from a cell phone, the sperm’s ability to move and survive decreases while the level of harmful reactive oxygen species (ROS) increases. Therefore, if someone is exposed to EMR from mobile phones and Wi-Fi devices over a long period, it may lead to male infertility due to the increased production of ROS in the exposed cells.

Should I Avoid Carrying a Cell Phone?

We don’t expect you to stop using a smartphone. However, we recommend carrying it in your back pocket rather than the front, especially if you’re trying to conceive. Better yet, keep your phone in a backpack or bag. Studies have demonstrated that certain natural supplements and vitamins, including Vitamins C and E, effectively safeguard the testis from the damaging effects of RF-EMF.

What If I Put My Phone in Airplane Mode?

So here’s the thing: it’s not just the WiFi or cellular connectivity that causes issues. The heat the cell phone generates affects your testes, even if your phone is off. Subtle changes can have a drastic effect on your testes’ mechanisms. So even if you can’t feel the heat, it could still be causing small physiological shifts in your testes’ sperm and testosterone production that, over time, generate more significant effects. 

Interested in learning about TRT? Find out more from Opt Health!

What If I’m Not Trying to Conceive?

The link between cell phones and male fertility matters, even if you’re not currently trying to conceive. Optimizing for fertility is the best way to optimize for vitality and longevity.

There are several ways that men can optimize their fertility (and health), including:

  • Maintaining a healthy body weight – Being overweight or underweight can negatively impact male fertility.
  • Eating a healthy diet – Consuming a balanced diet rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals may improve sperm quality.
  • Exercising regularly – Moderate exercise can help regulate hormones and improve fertility.
  • Reducing stress – High stress levels can affect hormone levels and sperm production.
  • Avoiding exposure to harmful chemicals and toxins – Pesticides, chemicals, and other toxins can negatively impact male fertility.
  • Quitting smoking and limiting alcohol consumptionSmoking and excessive alcohol intake have been linked to reduced sperm count and quality.
  • Getting enough sleep – Lack of sleep can disrupt hormone production and reduce sperm quality.
  • Avoiding tight clothing and excessive heat – High temperatures can reduce sperm production, so it’s important to avoid tight clothing and hot tubs.
  • Getting regular check-ups – Regular visits to a healthcare provider can help identify and treat any underlying medical conditions that may affect male fertility.
  • Practicing safe sex – Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) can cause infertility, so protection is essential during sexual activity.

Making these holistic lifestyle changes can improve your health and fertility over time. If you’re looking for a comprehensive, practical approach to optimizing your health, contact Opt Health. We offer customized optimization protocols based on 60+ biomarkers measured via bloodwork. Click here or call (855) 443-8678 to get started. 

I’ve Been Carrying My Phone in My Front Pocket for Years. Am I Screwed?

Don’t despair if you’ve been keeping your phone in your front pocket for several years. The adverse effects are probably reversible with time.

More research on this subject is needed. For example, most laboratory studies conducted on humans and animals were not intended to identify the more severe negative consequences of exposure to RF-EMF. Many experiments did not incorporate the real-life pulsing and modulation of the 5G mobile technology carrier signal. Furthermore, several of the experimental studies did not explore the combined harmful effects of other toxic environmental stimuli with wireless EMR and how they interact to reduce male fertility.

Regardless, it’s safe to say that carrying your cell phone in your front pocket isn’t doing your testes any favors. 

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