Reduction in sperm count and alterations in sexual development are “threatening human survival” and causing a fertility crisis, according to warnings from a leading epidemiologist.
In Shanna Swan’s new book, she outlines that this fertility crisis is similar to the grave threats of climate change.
“The current state of reproductive affairs can’t continue much longer without threatening human survival” the environmental and reproductive epidemiologist based at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital.
This revelation comes after she co-wrote a 2017 study showing sperm counts in the west had fallen 59 per cent from 1973 to 2011.
Speaking to Axios, she outlined that, according to existing modelling median sperm counts were expected to drop 0 by 2045, which she labelled “a little concerning, to say the least”
Co-authored by Stacey Colino, the book looks into how our modern way of life is so dangerous to sperm counts, causing changes to male and female sexuality.
The study cites exposure to lifestyles and chemicals as causes of the change. Threats are so serious that they threatened humanity’s continuation.
“Of five possible criteria for what makes a species endangered only one needs to be met; the current state of affairs for humans meets at least three.” she writes in the book.
The introduction of contraceptive pills in the 1960s caused birth rates to fall, marking a cultural shift away from procreating. Biology is also playing a part in the increased rate of miscarriages and earlier puberty. Swan believes “everywhere chemicals” have an impact on this, such as plastics, makeup and pesticides.
However, there are things people can do preventatively, like cutting down on tobacco and watching your weight.