How long sperm lives—inside the body or on various other surfaces—is more than just a “fun fact.” It have the right to actually affect your capacity to conceive. Learning that sperm live for 3–5 work in the woman reproductive system, because that example, means you might have sex number of days before your companion ovulates and also still result in a pregnancy.

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Let’s check out how long sperm can live in different scenarios, and bust a few myths follow me the way.

How long does sperm last inside the mrs reproductive tract?

One widely believed myth is the sperm just survives for a very short time. Studies display that the average length of time the sperm live, as soon as ejaculated or put into the female reproductive system, is around three days. This depends on wherein she is in she menstrual cycle, however—with just the right timing, more powerful sperm could last increase to 5 days.

A lot relies on the consistency of cervical mucus. During ovulation, alters in hormones change the composition of cervical mucus, providing a protective result that keeps sperm from drying out as quickly. Instead of its properties opaque texture, the mucus thins, offering just the best hosting environment to defend sperm without preventing movement.

The cervix additionally has another technique for stop on come sperm about the time that ovulation: cervical “crypts,” little channels off the cervical canal. This crypts deserve to actually serve as temporary storage spaces for sperm, which is then released over time, raising the chances of fertilization.

What this method is the the “fertile window” is actually as much as 5 days prior to a mrs ovulates. The also means that you can have sex one day, and not fertilize the egg till days later—and in fact, this is the situation with most pregnancies (as it’s rarely to decide the precise moment the ovulation). This is essential to understand whether she trying to conceive, or trying to prevent pregnancy.

How lengthy does sperm live elsewhere?

Everyone to know the city myth: two teens make out in a hot tub, and one ejaculates. The sperm swim through the water right into the rather vagina, and also surprise! Pregnancy, also though lock didn’t have actually sex.

Luckily, this isn’t reality. Sperm are highly unlikely to:

swim that far. Sperm space not Olympic swimmers. The mrs reproductive device actually helps coax sperm along; without this assist, they’re not going far.

So, in every likelihood, sperm ejaculated into a hot bath tub or bath would not live long sufficient to land inside a vagina—they’d survive only a few minutes.

Even in a room-temperature or body-temperature environment, sperm space unlikely come survive much more than one hour or so external the body. One of the most far-reaching factors affecting sperm survival is humidity. Sperm are brought in semen, a liquid that nourishes and buffers them; when semen has evaporated, yes nothing to defend sperm. Sperm the land ~ above a dry surface would be happy to last much more than one hour.


Wait, then exactly how does mail-in sperm testing work?

Mail-in sperm trial and error kits choose Legacy’s use a carry media, an ingredient it is clinically proven to safeguard sperm during overnight shipping. Additionally, our kits are insulated and also extensively experiment to ensure samples are not prone to sudden temperature transforms in transit. These measures extend the expectation of sperm external the body to at least 48 hours, without substantially affecting the health of sperm.

Learn much more about the scientific research of at-home sperm testing.

How lengthy does sperm critical in the testicles?

Spermatogenesis, or the procedure of developing sperm, takes around 72 days, and also it’s happening repetitively in the testicles. Once they’re mature, sperm live in “storage” in the testicles—specifically, in the cauda epididymis—for as lengthy as a few weeks. After ~ that, lock reabsorbed into the body.

But while in storage, sperm high quality is decreasing fairly rapidly. Studies indicate that DNA fragmentation and also mitochondrial damages increase after 5 work of abstinence, and also motility decreases too after about 7 days.


That’s why, return sperm counts boost a job or therefore after ejaculation, an extended period of abstinence isn’t valuable for sperm. If she trying come conceive, it’s finest to have sex every 1–2 days during your partner’s productive window.

How long have the right to sperm critical if you freeze it?

Freezing your sperm protects that quality, even if it is you’re freeze in the short term or in search of long-term storage. (We’re not talking about sticking your sperm in your family members freezer—medical cryopreservation is done through liquid nitrogen at a temperature that -196ºC.)

A 2019 examine examined the long-term result of freezing on person sperm and pregnancy outcomes, looking at end 119,000 donor sperm samples. The study discovered that:

Cryostorage lasting approximately 5 years had no result on the survival rate of sperm.After 5 years, there to be a small decrease in sperm’s survival price (from 86% to 74% over 15 years). However, this had actually only a minor affect on bear rates once this sperm was actually offered in insemination. Live birth prices for the group that save on computer for much less than 5 years to be 82%; because that the group that stored for 6–15 years, the LBR was 80%.

The researcher concluded the “long-term cryostorage that semen in a human sperm bank does not influence clinical outcomes.” So, we have the right to safely to speak that, when frozen, sperm have the right to last indefinitely.

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Choosing to keep your sperm

If you’re reasoning of freezing her sperm, using an industry-leading cryo storage facility can carry out the ideal outcomes at any time you decision to become a parent. If you freeze v Legacy, your samples room stored in ~ several different facilities come mitigate any location risks and monitored 24/7. This is one step you can trust to help keep her sperm safe and protect your chances of starting a family.