An unexpected pregnancy can be a blessing or a curse, depending on whether or not you want a child. That is why it’s important to know what can and can’t get you pregnant. Some people may wonder: can you get pregnant from precum?
Whether or not you’ll like the answer to this question depends on a lot of things. If you want to get pregnant, you’ll probably want the answer to be yes. If you don’t, on the other hand, a response of “yes” would probably just give you one more thing to worry about.
While you do have control over your choices, you don’t have control over the answer to this question. The human body’s going to do whatever it wants to do. But still, you’re probably curious about the answer to the question, can you get pregnant from precum?
How Pregnancy Happens
You probably already know about the birds and the bees and what people have to do to get pregnant, but there is a lot more to the process than that.
Sperm and eggs
Testicles produce sperm cells, and then they’re mixed with other fluids to make semen, commonly known as “cum.” The semen comes out of the man’s penis when he ejaculates. There are actually several million sperm cells that come out every time he ejaculates, and only one of them needs to contact an egg in order for the woman to get pregnant.
The eggs reside in the woman’s ovaries. The hormones that control her menstrual cycle lead to the maturation of a few eggs every month. When the eggs are mature, they are ready to be fertilized by sperm cells.
And then they meet
When the woman is ovulating, about halfway through her menstrual cycle, one mature egg will leave the ovary and travel through the fallopian tube towards her uterus. It will stay there for about 12 to 24 hours, waiting for a sperm cell to contact. If the woman has sex with a man during that time, semen can then travel through the vagina, cervix, uterus, and into the fallopian tubes to contact eggs.
Sperm cells have about six days to find an egg before they die. If a sperm cell meets an egg, fertilization happens. The fertilized egg will then move down the fallopian tube in the direction of the uterus. It will divide into a mass of several cells, which is a blastocyst.
The ball of cells will stay in the uterus for about two to three days. If it ends up attaching to the woman’s uterine lining, implantation has occurred, and the pregnancy will begin.
That is what happens when semen contacts the egg. So it’s pretty obvious that “cum” can get a woman pregnant. But can you get pregnant from precum?
What Is Precum?
You need to know what precum is in order to understand the question, can you get pregnant from precum?
Precum, also known as pre-ejaculate, is released when a man is sexually aroused. It’s a clear fluid that comes out before he actually ejaculates. Precum is a mix of protein, mucus, and enzymes; it lubricates the urethra and makes it easier for the sperm cells to flow out.
But, precum also has another purpose.
A male’s urethra, which is a tube in the penis, allows both semen and urine to leave the body. Precum neutralizes the acidity that the urine leaves behind. This protects the sperm from being destroyed.
The Cowper’s glands are a pair of glands about the size of peas and adjacent to the urethra. These glands are what produce precum, or pre-ejaculate fluid. Men can’t control the release of precum; it’s an automatic body function.
Can You Get Pregnant from Precum?
Now that you know a little bit more about what precum actually is, you’re probably still wondering, can you get pregnant from precum?
The simple answer to this question is yes.
Precum itself doesn’t actually contain sperm. However, it’s always a possibility that sperm cells will leak into the precum.
How can you get pregnant from precum?
Semen from a previous sexual encounter can stay in the urethra after the man ejaculates. It can end up mixing with the precum while the precum is coming out. The man can minimize the chances of this happening by urinating before he has sex, as this could help flush out any leftover semen.
Women should keep in mind that the answer to the question, “Can you get pregnant from precum?” can be yes even when they’re not ovulating. Remember, sperm can live inside a woman’s body for about six days in some cases. This means that if there are sperm cells inside her reproductive tract before ovulation starts, she can get pregnant from those when she starts to ovulate.
Why is this important?
When it comes to pregnancy, precum is really not that much of a concern. The semen contains far more sperm cells than the precum ever could.
However, this can become an issue. For example, if a man and woman decide to engage in penetration but have him pull out before ejaculation, they should know that she can still get pregnant.
There are likely people out there operating under the misconception that precum never contains sperm cells, meaning that a woman can’t get pregnant as long as the man doesn’t ejaculate. These sorts of misconceptions can easily lead to unwanted pregnancies. This is also why experts advise that couples who aren’t trying to conceive use protection during penetration.
The best pregnancy prevention is to use a form of contraception. For women, there are hormonal options that include birth control pills, implants, and shots. You can speak to your doctor about which options are best for you. Additionally, condoms are an excellent option, as well as contraceptive gels that contain spermicide.
Another thing that you should keep in mind is that you can get a sexually transmitted disease from precum.
What to Do If You Think You May Be Pregnant from Precum
Of course, if you end up becoming pregnant, there’s no way to know whether it came from the ejaculate or the pre-ejaculate. However, there are certain steps that you should take when you suspect an unplanned pregnancy.
If you’re worried you may be pregnant, there are options. You can take hormonal emergency contraceptive pills within five days of your sexual encounter. They’ll be most effective if you take them within the first 72 hours.
You can also use emergency IUD contraception. The Copper-T is an intrauterine device, or IUD, that can decrease your risk of becoming pregnant by over 99 percent. It’s actually significantly more effective than hormonal emergency contraceptive pills.
Your doctor can insert the IUD up to 5 days after your sexual encounter in order to prevent pregnancy. It’s actually an excellent form of long-term birth control as well, as you can keep it in for 10 to 12 years.
Both of these options can be inexpensive or even free if you have insurance. If you’re uninsured, the IUD will generally be much more expensive than the emergency contraceptive pills.
When should you take a home pregnancy test?
If you think you could be pregnant, you should take an at-home pregnancy test in order to get an answer. Even though you want your answer right away, it may not actually work if you try to take it immediately.
Most doctors recommend that you wait until at least the first day of your missed period to take a pregnancy test. In fact, if you want the most accurate result possible, you should wait until the week after your missed period.
Women who generally have irregular periods should wait to take the pregnancy test until at least three weeks after their sexual encounter.
When should you see your doctor?
Pregnancy tests aren’t always accurate. This is why you should always confirm your results with your doctor. Positive results are almost always correct, but negative results are often not.
If you go to your doctor, you will probably have to take a blood test, urine test, or both in order to see whether or not you’re pregnant. If it turns out that you’re pregnant, you should talk to your doctor about your options.
Taking a Pregnant Pause
As you can see, there is a lot of information you find out when you ask, can you get pregnant from precum? Even though it is not very likely, you can never say never in this case. If you really do not want to get pregnant, you should take precautions even if you are only making contact with the pre-ejaculate.
Remember that it only takes one sperm cell to get a woman pregnant. That sperm cell could very well be in the precum during your next sexual encounter. That is why you really should be as conservative as possible when thinking about the answer to the question, can you get pregnant from precum?
Did the answer to this question surprise you? Tell us in the comments section!