Tag Archives: questions

Question: Sperm in Precum?

Hi, a few semesters back I was in Dr. [So and So's] courses at SFSU. You were my aide, I’m not sure whether you still do teacher’s aid stuff or not but I remember how knowledgeable you were about the topic of human sexuality and I have a longstanding question and debate I need answered by someone who know what they’re talking about. The question is: does men’s prejaculation contain sperm?  I know it comes from a different part and is not manufacutred in the same place but I’m wondering whether it is in fact produced with a sperm count. If you could help me at all that would be wonderful! Thanks

Yes, it *can*. Here is why.

Semen is made of two parts: seminal fluid and sperm. Most of seminal fluid originates from the seminal vesicles, followed by fluids from the prostate, bulbourethral (aka Cowper’s) glands and a teeny bit from the testes. A small amount of that fluid contains sperm, somewhere under 10%.

For sperm to survive the urethral journey it must travel in an alkaline instead of acidic environment. Enter the alkaline leaning precum.

Although precum is there to clear it out, and give a little lube love, residual sperm can reside on the tubes and exit with the fluid. One easy solution: pee. Urinating beforehand will kill the straggling sperm. Urinating after ejaculation will kill any straggling sperm. The lesson? Sperm in pre-ejactulate is possible but pee will kill it.  Pregancy from precum is not very probable, in my opinion.

For more fun info on semen, checkout this infographic.

Question: Precum and Vaginal Wetness

Dental hygiene will never feel clean again.

Is precum in guys like vaginal wetness in girls? Is it a similar process? (-question asked during a sex ed talk.)

No. Vaginal wetness comes internally from transudation (water content in plasma pushes past cell walls when blood vessels/capillaries become engorged) and externally from the Bartholin’s (greater vestibular) glands. Lubrication  is part of the arousal process in females and can vary greatly due to a long list of factors.

Precum, on the other hand, occurs for a very different reason: to prep the urethra for safe sperm transportation. Urine and semen both pass through the urethra in males. Because urine is acidic enough to kill sperm, males secrete a small amount of fluid prior to ejaculation to create a more alkaline environment.

Be aware: precum still contains enough sperm to impregnante someone.

Advice: Parent-Teen Sex Talk

Accusatory, Alienating Sex Talk: Ur Doin' it Rite (Image via Time.com)

Yesterday a parent contacted me online about finding a condom in his daughter’s bag. (I wish I’d asked what he was doing in her bag in the first place.) His reaction was pretty standard fare: anxiety, fear, urge to intervene.

What really got me was his gendered reaction. His *daughter*, little girl, a female had condoms. She wants sex and is preparing for the encounter. Teen girls feel the sting of regulation far more than teen boys. Maybe because we imagine females as delicate creatures we exert more control over their lives as they develop into adults. Protect them from the evils of the world, namely the uncontrollable sex drives of young males.

Here’s the deal: teens don’t need protection. They need advice. They need support while they navigate their way into adulthood. Sex can really confusing for teens in a world that silences advice and offers sex-saturated images around every corner for consumer titillation.

Do you have a kid? Please talk to them about sex. You don’t have to launch into lectures about safety or ask probing questions about their sex lives. Just talk about sex calmly when it comes up. Our culture is obsessed with sex. media sex scandals or new research will give you plenty of opportunities. Otherwise, you will wait and avoid these talks until you find a condom in your kid’s bag and have no idea what to do.

The Dad who contacted me felt this dread anxiety of talking to a teen about sex. A transcript of the conversation and my advice for him after the jump. Continue reading

Sex Ed Ignorance

Yesterday, one of my high school students asked me a curious question about unprotected anal sex.

“Can having unprotected anal sex, like, make HIV?”

“What? I don’t understand your question.”

“Like, if two people that don’t have HIV have unprotected anal sex… my health ed teacher at my other school told me you can make HIV by having unprotected anal sex.”

My eyebrows climbed up my face for safety and my eyes went wide.

“No. Absolutely not. If the virus is not present in either person it will not just appear. One person must be a host and to pass it to the other person. It’s like saying you’ll create a sweater if you have two knitting needles but no yarn.”

My friends were horrified when I told them about this conversation. One big humanity failure, they said. Weep for all of us, they proclaimed. What a bunch of ignorant people, they mumbled.

Yes and no. I have frequent facepalm moments in sex ed but every uttered myth is a moment for education. Honestly, I like it when students or clients ask me questions that many would consider dumb or ignorant. This is why I strive to remain calm in the face of others’ panic. If a person has misinformation it is not their fault.

So much of our media spreads false studies and rumors-as-fact. Pseudo-experts go on Dr. Phil and Maury to scare parents about sexual trends that are verified urban myths. Of course the general public is miseducated.

What sucks is that schools leave teachers without resources and don’t encourage any fact-checking practices. This is when misinformation spreads like a SoCal fire.

I am happy when I hear questions that might make others weep. Our conversation blossomed into information about sexual viruses in general, stigmas and what we really need to be concerned about. Next week I’m going to teach them about media literacy and how to spot bullshit media reports on flawed research.