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Reader Question – Sperms and Pregnancy


How much seed would I have to store up to make a baby?


Hi Scott,

[I'm just going to assume that you're not talking about keeping buckets of sperm in a freezer to be thawed later and dumped into a vagina. ]

As they say, it really only takes one brave little sperm to get a woman pregnant (i.e. make a baby), but males squirt out a bunch for a reason. More sperm increases the likelihood that one will make it.

If there was just one little guy swimming on his own trying to reach the egg, he might not make it; there’s all kinds of dangers in a vagina!

He might not make it to the egg if he doesn’t pack a big enough lunch (sperms carry a glucose store) and runs out of steam; he might be eaten by the white blood cells patrolling the vagina; he might take a wrong turn or get stuck – it’s a long way to go (for a sperm) and he’s only going to survive around 72 hours in there plus, the egg will only be active for 24 hours!

It’s called a “miracle” for a reason – on average only 3 out of 288 sessions of unprotected sex will result in conception (but you should still wear a condom EVERY time, you never know when ‘this time’ is going to be of those ‘three times’).

To increase our chances of passing on our genes, we have evolved to send more than one sperm on a quest for the egg. With a big team of sperms they can help each other swim faster, some can “distract” the white blood cells (or block another guys’ sperms), and there’s more of a chance that at least one will be escape the other dangers and be strong enough to make it all that way to a fertile egg in time.

Typically, in a healthy man, there will be enough sperm to (theoretically) get a woman pregnant every time he ejaculates – even if he’s ejaculating regularly every day.

If you are worried about having enough sperm, you could hold off on ejaculating for a few days before you try – but there’s no sense in holding off for too long, because unused sperms will just be re-absorbed into the body after a certain amount of time.

Another helpful tip when you’re trying to get a woman pregnant is to wear looser underwear and avoid hot baths; this will keep your balls cooler and will decrease the likelihood of your sperm being mutated.

If you’re really worried about sperm depletion or are having a lot of trouble getting pregnant, this might be something you want to take up with your doctor.

Good Luck!
(with a little help from Dr Reuben)

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10 comments to Reader Question – Sperms and Pregnancy

  • lost

    I am not even sure that question was serious….great answer regardless though Shay!

  • Shay

    haha yeah, but you never know ^_~

  • Strumpet


    But, I gotta say…

    I DO really love that adorable green-haired pregnant fairy pic.

    It’s cuter than the Pillsbury Doughboy.

  • horny guy

    dunno about it being a miracle, since in these times, too many “accidents” seem to happen.

  • Shay

    Strumpet – I loved it too! I’m so glad to have found an excuse to post it. ^_~

    HG – It all depends on how you define “miracles” and “accidents”.

  • Strumpet

    Accidental Miracles are what most of life really is anyway.

  • Aragorn

    Informative as always dearest ! – A

  • Late Starter

    Following a childhood ‘problem’ my sperm count was very low – low motility too. I did get weary of my doctor saying, confusedly, ‘Well, it does only take one sperm, you know’, as I saw him a number of times in an attempt to improve my wife’s chances of conception. After over three years of trying and failing we went for Artificial Insemination by Donor, which worked.

    So, whilst I accept that people should be careful I’d also say that, if you’re only producing a very small number of sperm and if they’re so exhausted that they can barely reach the starting line, let alone complete the equivalent of a Tri-Athlon, I reckon you’re fairly safe in ditching the contraception ;o)

  • Anonymous

    From a biological point of view…women are acidic, men are basic. Something crazy like 80% of the sperm ejaculated die within the first few minutes because of the acidic levels in the vagina. The 20% that live use the others as a shield to get through to other areas then make the trek to the egg. Also, when a woman is nearing her fertile time, she actually self lubes (Not always the case with women on the pill) and her cervix drop to make the distance shorter for the sperm, with orgasm actually causing the cervix to drop into the pool of sperm (if the male stays inserted while she orgasms) and thereby eliminating the most dangerous part of the trip.

  • Shay

    Strumpet – exactly sweety!

    Aragorn – Thanks hun! ^_~

    LS – haha poor spermies, but be that as it may, I still can’t tell people that it’s ever totally safe (unless you’ve had surgery) to ditch the contraception. ^_~

    Anon – Thanks, I was trying to keep things simple because not everyone has a science background, but it’s good to know that there are more of us sciency folks out there. ^_^

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