Living with Varicocele
Lifestyle and daily treatment advice for varicocele.
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Mr. Daniel Johnson, B.Sc.
Does Excessive Sitting Cause Varicocele?
The average American sits 7.7 hours per day. So, odds are very high that YOU too are at risk.
Sitting for more than 7-8 hours per day is a major risk factor for both infertility and varicocele. But, the challenge is that many of us sit for relaxation, sit during commute, and sit for work! So, the solution isn't to stop sitting, but to make sitting better.
Sitting Overheats the Testicles!
Most chairs (especially cushion chairs) trap heat and cause testicular hyperthermia--which effectively halts sperm production, and increases varicocele swelling size. It is therefore critical to sit on better chairs, minimize continuous sitting time, and when possible use cooling devices.
Sitting Causes Muscular Imbalance & Tightness
Excessive sitting causes postural imbalances such as forward head posture, rounded upper back (thoracic hyperkyphosis), and hip tightness that all translate to poor muscle activation, excessive downward weighing pressure (preventing blood from leaving testicles to return to the heart), and impaired bowel health. All of these exacerbate the Nutcracker Syndrome, and increase abdominal pressure, impair blood from leaving the testicles, and lead to increased varicocele blood pooling.
Here is a 4 minute daily routine you need to follow to counteract the negative effects of excessive sitting:
Excessive Sitting Impairs Bowel Health
Poor bowel and digestive health are causative risk factors for varicocele [science source]. Sitting increases the risk of developing conditions such as constipation, inflammatory bowel disease, acid reflux, etc. Therefore, we must take some precautions to minimize the negative impact of excessive sitting.
Is it okay to use a hot tub or sauna with varicocele?
Can you even take a hot shower with varicocele?
Look, there is nothing wrong with using a hot tub or sauna, and most definitely nothing wrong with hot showers. However, excessive or prolonged elevation of scrotal temperatures can have negative implications on pain and infertility. So, do your best to keep your testicles at a normal temperature on average. And, look, reduce long-duration heating (e.g. hot tubs or saunas) if it worsens your symptoms.
I should however make a note that early in your treatment (e.g. three to four weeks), it is ideal to minimize all stressors, and that means no hot tub or sauna. However, after the three to four weeks of treatment, once you have gained some good results, your testicles will be much healthier and more resilient to stress.
Dos & Don'ts of Hot Tub, Sauna, and Hot Showers
✗ Don't expose your testicles to excessive or prolonged heat stress
✗ Don't worry occasional heat exposure
✗ Don't worry about keeping your testicles cool all day
✓ DO I highly advise a cool or cold shower after hot tub or sauna
✓ DO run some cool water over your testicles after hot tub, sauna, or a hot shower
✓ DO keep your testicles cool in general, not 100% of all day
The Right Underwear Makes Difference
Icing (Wedges) Vs. Natural Cooling
So, it is a good idea to ice your testicles? Well, I’ve personally helped treat thousands of clients with varicocele, and the ones that ice their testicles usually end up with testicular sensitivity. I don’t recommend icing as a form of therapy for either improving fertility or as a varicocele treatment.
A few of my clients say that the only thing that gives them relief is icing. I tell them—look probably the thing that’s causing your excessive sensitivity is the icing itself. So, stop icing, and just cool (not cold—only cool!) your testicles. And you know what they find? Decreased sensitivity—and less pain.
Important! Cooling treatments are beneficial, but your general goal is to normalize testicular temperature.
Varicocele Therapeutic Underwear
So, when I manufactured the STUD Varicocele Underwear, not only did I design it to be sexy, but to also allow the testicles to cool naturally. They do this by simply having a feel free cooling mesh at the front that allows natural heat release. As well, they also support the testicles forward and away from the thighs so that they can cool better. What does this mean? It means that the testicles can naturally approach their normal temperature.
Icing simply over-cools your testicles, and is simply not the right approach. So, again, avoid over-cooling and go for normal and natural temperature.
Cooling Underwear Dos & Don’ts
✗ Don’t ice your testicles
✗ Don’t over-cool your testicles
✓ DO wear cooling underwear
✓ DO allow natural testicular cooling
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Varicocele Natural Treatment
Varicocele Pain Relief
Living with Varicocele
Exercising with Varicocele
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Yoga for Varicocele
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