Let’s Talk about Sex

Sex while trying to conceive can be stressful and wrought with questions. What matters? What doesn’t? How often you have sex, sex drive, and what happens during sex can determine whether or not you make a baby.

Salt-N-Pepa really wanted to talk about sex – and so do we. Some people are under the impression that sex, just sex, is enough to make a baby. It’s actually more complicated than that. How often you have sex, sex drive, and what happens during sex can determine whether or not you make a baby.


First, let’s define “ejaculation”

Sometimes the word “ejaculation” can be intimidating and confusing. Here’s a simple way to think of it: if something shoots out, you’ve ejaculated. Men usually ejaculate when they reach orgasm. That means you can ejaculate even when you’re not having intercourse with your partner.


Let’s get it on… But how often?

Too often

There’s nothing like putting on some Marvin Gaye to set the mood. But is setting the mood too often the right answer to make a baby? Although you may want to argue otherwise, there is such a thing as having “too much” sex. It all comes down to biology. The more you ejaculate, the more healthy sperm cells escape. This doesn’t mean that because you lost sperm cells that your body will compensate and develop sperm in larger quantities in less time. Your body is on a schedule. It’ll make sperm at its own pace. That means that if you have sex and ejaculate everyday (or multiple times a day), your sperm count (and the overall quality of cells) can decrease dramatically.

Not often enough

On the other hand, if you’re not ejaculating on a regular basis (a few times a week), this could also contribute to decreased chances of conception. Sperm cells have a lifespan of about five days. This means that if sperm cells are not ejaculated during this production time, they will die in storage. When you finally ejaculate, most of the cells will be dead and not viable for conception.

Juuuust right

So how often should you get it on? Most experts advise that ejaculating every 2-3 days will produce the most consistent sperm counts for men. Typically, on a schedule like this, it will take from 6 months to a year to conceive a baby. If you’re still trying and it’s taken over this time, you may want to consider making lifestyle changes to boost your fertility, or consult with a specialist or your doctor.


Sex drive

Wanting to have sex also plays a major role in making a baby. You should have a desire to have sex. Sex should feel good. For one, having a decent to strong sex drive can help you experience a more intense orgasm that will help sperm get a decent start on their journey to fertilize the egg. In addition, a healthy sex drive can mean that your body is at a good balance and that you are not experiencing other, more harmful medical issues.

However, if your sex drive is low, or the sex you do have is rigid, conceiving a child may be much more difficult. In some cases this loss of sex drive could be the result of the pressure to have a baby. We would recommend that you ask your partner to take a break. A little breathing room can be a perfect way to reinvigorate your relationship in the bedroom.

A weak sex drive can also mean that your body is suffering from more serious issues. Lack of libido is known to be a symptom of obesity, diabetes, heart conditions, elevated stress levels and low T (low testosterone). If it’s been low for a while, check in with your physician. Your body might be telling you that something else is going on.


Let’s get down to business

Boyz II Men set a pretty high bar when they sang “I’ll make love to you, like you want me to.” Contrary to the smooth sounds of R&B, sex is definitely not easy. A lot of things can happen during sex. Things can get messy and confusing, body parts flailing everywhere. But just like a sport, sex takes practice to get it right. And even when you think you’ve gotten it right, there is still work to be done. I mean Michael Jordan wasn’t born a legend – I guess some people would argue against that. But he was definitely rusty after that baseball fling. So try to have fun during this time with your partner. Good sex is good for baby making.

Here’s a list of more alarming things that could happen during sex that may need more attention:

Erectile Dysfunction

Around 20% of all men will experience some inability to get or maintain an erection in their lives. For many young men, experiencing erectile dysfunction (ED) is the result of anxiety. This anxiety can stem from the pressure to have a baby. Like in the case with low sex drive, if this may be what you’re experiencing, taking a break from baby making can help to relieve anxiety. For older men, ED can be an early sign of cardiovascular disease. In other cases, ED may also be a symptom of the following lifestyles and medical conditions:

  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • Alcohol abuse
  • Obesity
  • Narcotics use
  • Prescription drug abuse

For more comprehensive information, check out our article on Erectile Dysfunction.

Premature ejaculation

Like ED, men can experience premature ejaculation at some point in their lives. Premature ejaculation (PE) refers to the act of ejaculating before you reach orgasm. Experts are at odds when it comes to premature ejaculation and conception. More research is being conducted to flesh out if PE can lead to conception. Some causes of premature ejaculation include:

  • An enlarged prostate gland
  • Stress
  • Performance anxiety
  • Varicocele

Other studies have shown that certain medications used to treat premature ejaculation like escitalopram, which is also an antidepressant, can cause harmful damage to sperm count, motility and morphology.

Retrograde ejaculation

Men who experience what is called a “dry orgasm” do not ejaculate any form of semen even when they’ve reached orgasm. Without external ejaculation, conceiving a child is not likely. If you experience this kind of non-ejaculation, it does not necessarily mean that you are not producing semen. The semen that you are producing is reverse ejaculating and shooting into your bladder. After you orgasm, you may notice that your urine is a bit cloudy. This is the mixing of your urine and the semen you previously reverse ejaculated. Some causes of this condition include:

  • Medications taken for high blood pressure, heart disease, or prostrate enlargement
  • Prostrate surgery
  • Diabetes
  • Multiple sclerosis, or other conditions that can cause nerve damage
  • Surgeries that have impacted the the bladder muscles

Although retrograde ejaculation is not necessarily dangerous to your overall health, it does cause infertility. But there are things you can do to repair this condition. Learn about these next steps here.

Pain or discomfort

Any sort of pain you experience is usually a sign that your body requires some attention. Same goes for down there. If you experience testicular pain or discomfort before, during or after sex, your body is probably telling you that something might need fixing. Typical reasons for this pain and discomfort include the following:

If the pain is consistent during each session of intercourse or even long after, consult a doctor even if you do not suspect one of the above conditions. If any testicular surgery is necessary, be sure to check in with an experienced and well-established urologist to discuss how surgery will affect your fertility and future family building options.

Blood in semen (Hematospermia or hemospermia)

If you notice blood in your ejaculate, this could mean various things. One instance with the presence of blood in semen could be an isolated event that deems no worries. The process of ejaculating is biologically complicated with many muscles working at the same time. This kind of intensity may in itself be enough to cause bleeding. For young men under the age of 40, blood in semen may be a symptom of some sort of infection. For older men, this may be a symptom of prostate complications or cancer. If you notice that there is blood in your semen more than once, see a doctor immediately.


The Highlights

1. Have sex every 2-3 days to get the most optimal sperm counts and quality.

2. Have fun during sex. And if it’s getting a little too stressful, take a break for a while. This may help reignite your flame in the bedroom.

3. Sex won’t be perfect at first. It’s a time of learning and exploring. Enjoy it! And if anything alarming happens, see a doctor.

Here’s a little something to help set the mood. You’re welcome.

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