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Another day, another health study that completely turns our world upside down — today we're going to be discussing how Ibuprofen, a drug we've been taking since, oh, we don't know, freakin' childhood, is now being linked to male infertility. Yep, that's right, guys, you may have been unknowingly compromising your little swimmers for years. Pleasant stuff, huh? The semi-good news is that this unfortunate side effect doesn't necessarily apply to the average guy. Instead, researchers are mostly concerned for professional or long-term athletes.
According to a new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, heavy dosages of everyday pain medicine, like Ibuprofen, can "alter human testicular physiology" and lead to a disorder called compensated hypogonadism. The study took place in France and Denmark, involving 31 men under the age of 35. Some of the men took the maximum daily limit of ibuprofen — 1,200 milligrams over a six-week period — while others took a placebo. As per USA Today:
"Within two weeks, testosterone-producing hormones in the ibuprofen subjects became tied to the amount of ibuprofen in their blood. The ratio of such hormones to testosterone dropped, causing compensated hypogonadism. The disorder is also linked to depression and strokes, the study's authors note."
Given the very clear, dismal results it may be useful to take a more holistic approach to ailments that stem outside of chronic pain — like a headache, for example. This isn't to say that minimal use of ibuprofen has proven to lead to compensated hypogonadism, but why risk it? There are some great home headache remedies that one, don't cost a dime, and two, don't involve taking medicine. The next time you're hit with a headache try taking a warm bath, going for a walk, or best of all, taking a nap! Should those options not be available to you, try applying gentle, steady, rotating pressure to the painful area of your head with your index finger or thumb. Maintain pressure for 7 to 15 seconds, then release and repeat as needed. If it's good enough for WebMD, it's good enough for us.
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