The term sperm is derived from the Greek word ”sperma” (meaning “seed”) and refers to the male reproductive cells. The human sperm cell is the reproductive cell in males and will only survive in warm environments, once leaving the body the sperm’s survival is reduced and may cause the cell to die. Sperm cells come in two types; “male” and “female”. Sperm cells that give rise to female (XX) offspring after fertilization differ in that they carry an X chromosome, while sperm cells that give rise to male (XY) offspring carry a Y chromosome.
On a dry surface, such as clothing or bedding, sperm are dead by the time the semen has dried. In water, such as a warm bath or hot tub, sperm will likely live longer because they thrive in warm, wet environments. Inside a woman’s body, sperm can live for up to five days depending on the conditions. If you have unprotected sex even a few days before your partner ovulates, there is a chance of achieving a pregnancy. It takes just one sperm to fertilize an egg and achieve a pregnancy, but for each sperm that reaches and fertilizes an egg, there are millions that don’t. The average ejaculation contains close to 100 million sperm.
The semen must travel from the vagina to the fallopian tubes, an arduous journey that few sperm survive. For those that complete the trip, penetration of the egg is far from a sure thing. The egg is covered by a thick layer that makes fertilization difficult. Experts believe this process may be nature’s way of allowing only the healthiest sperm to fertilize the egg, thereby providing the best chances to produce a healthy baby.
Sperm concentration. Also called sperm density, this is the number of sperm in millions per milliliter (mL) of semen. Twenty million or more sperm per mL is considered normal. Sperm motility. This is the percentage of sperm in a sample that are moving as well as an assessment of their movement. One hour after ejaculation, at least 50% of sperm should be moving forward in a straight line. Unlike women, whose fertility ends at menopause, men can continue to be fertile throughout life. Although sperm production decreases with age, men continue to produce sperm, and even elderly men have fathered children.
- Editorial Team
February 14, 2014 at 12:08pm
Beware of these things that can cause infertility.
- Editorial Team
December 10, 2013 at 02:48pm
Learn more about sperm count and find if protein supplements and masturbating have an effect on it.
- Editorial Team
November 05, 2013 at 10:12am
Do you want your sperm to swim faster? Then load up on oranges, yellow fruits and vegetables. According to researchers at Harvard University’s
August 26, 2013 at 01:55pm
Infertility can be a bitter pill to swallow. Here are 10 things you should stay away from to remain fertile!
- Dr Vijayasarathi Ramanathan
January 17, 2013 at 07:39am
Masturbation seems to have many, many myths attached to it. We’ve been told among other things that it can make one infertile, impotent, go blind,
How do I increase my sperm count?
Do protein supplements affect sperm count? Also, I am addicted to masturbation.
How to cure Oligospermia
Can I donate sperm for money?
Ask an expert
- Coming soon – a 3D technique to sort fast sperms from slow ones
Here comes a tracking system that makes 3D movies of living sperm to detect potential infertility-causing anomalies - such as the 'bent tail' that
- Mosquito sperm have `sense of smell`
Researchers have claimed to have detected a suite of specialized chemical sensors called odorant receptors (ORs) in mosquito sperm. They say that
- Sperm robots on way to deliver babies!
Apart from their natural act, sperms are set to be used as biological motors for transporting drugs, genes and other sperms to help treat infertility
- Robotic sperm – the future of reproduction?
Researchers have developed sperm-based biobots that can be used to fertilise individual eggs or to deliver targeted doses of drugs to them. Oliver
- Coming soon – designer sperm to fix faulty genes!
A new research has suggested that it may be possible to alter faulty genes of future generations by introducing new, functioning genes using
- Coming soon – female ‘sperm’ and male ‘eggs’?
Bizarre as it may sound researches have suggested that it may be possible to create sperm from women and eggs from a men – a feat which could
- X chromosome plays a role in sperm production
Large portions of the X chromosome — long perceived as the ‘female’ counterpart to the male-associated Y chromosome — have evolved to play a
- Lindsay Lohan wants sperm!
Lindsay Lohan wants to be a mother but is she ready for it? Can she be a responsible mother?