Dear men, your sunscreen may be affecting your fertility

Trying for a baby? You may want to lay off the sunscreen for a bit.

According to a US study released on Friday, two chemicals used to protect against ultraviolent (UV) rays may impair men's ability to father children.

Researchers found that men with high exposure to UV filters BP-2 or 4OH-BP had a 30 per cent reduction in fecundity, the biological ability to reproduce.

Lower fecundity may result in a longer time to pregnancy.

These findings were published online in the American Journal of Epidemiology.

Diminishing sperm quality, inhibiting reproduction

The study by the National Institutes of Health and the New York state Department of Health’s Wadsworth Center looked at 501 couples from Michigan and Texas who were trying to conceive a child.

Researchers followed them till pregnancy or up to one year of trying.

Study author​ Dr Germaine Louis said: "The women participants actually had greater exposure to the UV filters overall, but their exposure wasn’t associated with any significant pregnancy delays.

"Our next step is to figure out how these particular chemicals may be affecting couple fecundity or time to pregnancy—whether it’s by diminishing sperm quality or inhibiting reproduction some other way."

Sources: Xinhua, National Institutes of Health