The adverse effects of smoking on overall health are well-documented, but its impact on fertility is often overlooked. Smoking not only harms the lungs and increases the risk of various diseases, but it can also significantly impair both male and female fertility. In this blog post, 

The Impact of Smoking on Female Fertility:

For women, smoking has been found to affect fertility at multiple stages. Let’s delve into the specific ways in which smoking can hinder a woman’s ability to conceive:

  • Disrupted Menstrual Cycle: Smoking can lead to irregular menstrual cycles, making it difficult to predict ovulation accurately. The chemicals in cigarettes can interfere with hormonal regulation, causing irregularities in the release of eggs from the ovaries.
  • Decreased Egg Quality: Smoking can accelerate the depletion of a woman’s eggs, leading to diminished ovarian reserve. It also reduces the quality of eggs, increasing the chances of genetic abnormalities and decreasing the likelihood of successful fertilization and implantation.
  • Higher Rate of Miscarriage: Smoking during pregnancy increases the risk of miscarriage significantly. The toxic substances in tobacco smoke can compromise the development of the embryo, leading to implantation failure or early pregnancy loss.

The Impact of Smoking on Male Fertility:

Smoking affects male fertility in various ways, as outlined below:

  • Reduced Sperm Count: Smoking is associated with a decrease in sperm count, making it more challenging to achieve conception. The toxins in cigarettes can harm sperm production in the testes, leading to lower sperm concentrations.
  • Altered Sperm Motility: Smoking can impair sperm motility, reducing their ability to swim effectively towards the egg for fertilization. This decreased mobility lowers the chances of successful fertilization and conception.
  • DNA Damage: The harmful chemicals in tobacco smoke can cause DNA damage in sperm cells. This damage can affect the genetic material carried by the sperm, potentially leading to birth defects in offspring or failed pregnancies.
  • Erectile Dysfunction: Smoking increases the risk of erectile dysfunction (ED), making it harder for men to achieve and maintain an erection. ED can further complicate fertility by hindering sexual intercourse. 


The negative impact of smoking on fertility should not be underestimated. Both male and female smokers face numerous challenges when trying to conceive, ranging from irregular menstrual cycles and decreased sperm quality to higher rates of miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy. However, by making the conscious decision to quit smoking, individuals can significantly improve their fertility prospects and overall reproductive health. 

To know more consult
Dr Ila Gupta
Director & Sr. Consultant at Ferticity IVF & Fertility clinics