Sperm Count and Trying to Conceive

When it comes to trying to conceive, many couples prefer more of a quantity approach versus a quality approach. They suppose that having intercourse multiple times during or near ovulation will increase their chances of becoming pregnant. To some degree, this is true. By having sex more frequently during ovulation, you increase the number of sperm that will have a chance of making the journey through the reproductive system and fertilizing an egg.

Having said all of that, the fact of the matter is that having more sex can affect a man’s sperm count. The man’s body needs time to rebuild and replenish his sperm supply after ejaculation. The problem is, of course, is that every man is different, and experts don’t always agree on how long it takes for a man to rebuild his sperm supply. The most common advice that you’re likely to hear is that you’re best off waiting about a day and a half in between ejaculations if you want to have the best chance of having a high sperm count.

There’s another factor to consider when it comes to fertility and the frequency of sexual intercourse, however. As it turns out, sperm tend to be at their best near the time of production. Sperm that have been produced more recently tend to, on average, move forward at a better pace (known as sperm “motility”) and have less genetic abnormalities. After a time, sperm that’s been produced but hasn’t been released via ejaculation can lose some of its vitality. Here again, the specifics can vary from one man to the next but waiting more than a week between ejaculations is, on average, thought to produce lower-quality sperm.

So, how frequently should you have sex if you want to maximize your chances of conception? According to these general guidelines, the man should ejaculate about a week and a half before you ovulate. Starting one week before you ovulate, you should have sex about every day and a half up until ovulation. This should help to maximize the odds of conception, at least in terms of sperm count and sperm quality.

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