sperm myths - storing it up

Storing sperm up will mean I’ll have more which is better, right?


The sperm production process takes around 60 – 90 days. Sperm go through an incredibly long journey just to make it to their final storage point, the epididymis. It’s almost like they go through an intense 3 month training regime to get ready for the task ahead. By the time they’ve reached the epididymis they should be in peak condition ready for action and need to get on with the job in hand. If you leave them waiting too long they get lazy, tired and damaged.

Sperm that are stored up for too long within the epididymis are going to find themselves under attack from heat and ultimately oxidative stress especially if there are lifestyle or physiological factors aggravating this. Oxidative stress is one of the biggest factors that can impair the sperm’s ability to function properly and will ultimately impact their ability to reach and fertilise the egg.

Yes, abstaining from ejaculation may well mean you have more sperm within the epididymis but they will be more prone to damage meaning that they’re less effective. If a man fails to ejaculate regularly then the sperm will naturally die off and be reabsorbed into the body. What you don’t want is this dying or damaged sperm to be what you produce for an IVF cycle or for when you’re trying to conceive naturally.

So the moral of the story in this case is that regular ejaculation is actually incredibly important in terms of maintaining happy healthy sperm. Once they’re trained up ready to go you need to set them free!

And the common question is, how often is often? If you’re trying to conceive and your sperm count is within normal range then ejaculating every 2 – 4 days would be a good routine to follow. The key point being not to store it up for a week or two before hitting the ovulation window.