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In this sprint you will learn about the advice to men.

The majority of focus of care provided for preconception and during pregnancy/postnatally is focused on the Mum and baby. There are missed opportunities for engaging men in the discussions providing healthy living advice and for offering support when required which will be considered during this section.

The advice will focus on the importance of providing information to partners to:

  • improve their fertility 
  • identify any potential genetic risk factors 
  • healthy living advice to support pregnant women and to prepare for the arrival of a baby in the home 
  • support and identify mental health concerns 
  • maintain healthy relationships and reduce the risk of domestic violence. 

Can you consider opportunities you might have in your own work to engage men in conversations about fertility, pregnancy planning, managing the stresses and changing relationships of the family during pregnancy and following childbirth?



Many of the recommendations which will optimise sperm quality and male fertility are the same as given to women when providing them with preconception care.  The risk factors to consider include: 

  • Obesity 
  • Smoking 
  • Alcohol 
  • Substance misuse 

Offering non-judgmental advice and signposting to local or on-line support services such as weight management, smoking cessation, drug and alcohol services may be appropriate. 

Further information on how to improve male fertility can be found at How to improve male fertility.


General preconception advice for men 

  • Reduce alcohol intake to 3-4 Units per day 
  • Testing for sexually transmitted infections 
  • Optimise sperm production by: 
    • Avoiding hot showers or sitting in hot baths 
    • Avoid jacuzzis, saunas and sitting for a long time with a laptop on the knee 
    • Wear loose trousers and underwear 
    • Avoid cycling or sitting for long periods 
  • Eat 5 portions of fruit or veg in a day 
  • Exercise for at least 20-30 mins three times per week 
  • Consider any personal or family history of sickle cell, thalassaemia or other genetic disorders and discuss with GP 
  • Discuss at a long-term condition clinic or medication review about pregnancy plans. 
  • Discuss support for any mental health concerns, recognizing that pregnancy and having baby is lifechanging and affects relationships and Dad’s/partner’s mental wellbeing too.