Do sex positions and lubricants impact getting pregnant?
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TLC Fertility Blog

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Tell me the best coital practice for getting pregnant

Adapted from a report of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine in 2022Unfortunately, there is no ideal coital practice to help couples get pregnant. It is not a fact that laying on your back after intercourse facilitates sperm transport into the fallopian tubes. Likewise, women do not need to lay with their feet in the air.
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Sperm immediately reach the fallopian tubes

According to a recent report by the American Society of Reproductive Medicine, commonly known as ASRM, sperm can be found in the fallopian tubes some minutes after ejaculation regardless of coital practices.In one study, sperm deposited at the cervix at midcycle are found in the fallopian tubes within 15 minutes. They move to the fallopian tubes and are expelled into the peritoneal cavity rather than collecting in the ampulla of the fallopian tube.In another study, labeled particles placed in the posterior vaginal fornix reached the fallopian tubes in as little as 2 minutes during the follicular phase. The particles were observed only in the tube adjacent to the ovary containing the dominant follicle and not in the contralateral tube.Although female orgasm may promote sperm transport, there is no known relationship between orgasm and fertility. Also, there also is no convincing evidence for any relationship between specific coital practices and infant gender.Still, keep in mind that fertility specialists will advise patients to lay down for 5 minutes after their embryo transfer during IVF treatment.
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What kind of lubricant can or can’t a patient use?

Some vaginal lubricants may decrease the success rate of pregnancy. Canola oil has no detrimental effect, but commercially available water-based lubricants inhibit sperm motility in vitro by 60% to 100% within 60 minutes of incubation.Some over-the-counter lubricants, olive oil, and saliva diluted to concentrations adversely affect sperm motility and velocity as low as 6.25%. However, mineral oil has no such effect.Hydroxyethylcellulose-based lubricants also have no scientific evidence they can inhibit semen parameters. Although some lubricants adversely affect sperm parameters in vitro, the use of lubricants in couples attempting conception was shown not to affect cycle fecund- ability compared with non-use.Find out more about seeking treatment at Tree of Life Center by calling 818-344-8522
a couple holding paper red hearts glued to a stick in bed

Sources

  • 1. Settlage DS, Motoshima M, Tredway DR. Sperm transport from the external cervical os to the fallopian tubes in women: a time and quantitation study. Fertil Steril 1973;24:655–61.
  • 2. Kunz G, Beil D, Deininger H, Wildt L, Leyendecker G. The dynamics of rapid sperm transport through the female genital tract: evidence from vaginal so- nography of uterine peristalsis and hysterosalpingoscintigraphy. Hum Re- prod 1996;11:627–32.
  • 3. King R, Dempsey M, Valentine KA. Measuring sperm backflow following female orgasm: a new method. Socioaffect Neurosci Psychol 2016;6: 31927.
  • 4. Zietsch B, Santtila P. No direct relationship between human female orgasm rate and number of offspring. Anim Behav 2013;86:253–5.
  • 5. Kutteh WH, Chao CH, Ritter JO, Byrd W. Vaginal lubricants for the infer- tile couple: effect on sperm activity. Int J Fertil Menopausal Stud 1996;41: 400–4.
  • 6. Anderson L, Lewis SE, McClure N. The effects of coital lubricants on sperm motility in vitro. Hum Reprod 1998;13:3351–6.
  • 7. Tulandi T, Plouffe L Jr, McInnes RA. Effect of saliva on sperm motility and activity. Fertil Steril 1982;8:721–3.
  • 8. Agarwal A, Deepinder F, Cocuzza M, Short RA, Evenson DP. Effect of vaginal lubricants on sperm motility and chromatin integrity: a prospective comparative study. Fertil Steril 2008;89:375–9.
  • 9. Steiner AZ, Long DL, Tanner C, Herring AH. Effect of vaginal lubricants on natural fertility. Obstet Gynecol 2012;120:44–51.
  • 10. McInerney KA, Hahn KA, Hatch EE, Mikkelsen EM, Steiner AZ, Rothman KJ, et al. Lubricant use during intercourse and time to pregnancy: a prospective cohort study. BJOG 2018;125:1541–8.
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