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Sperm facts you didn’t know

by Gina Colonette, blogger

Those little swimmers are more than what meets the eye (or microscope). I’m talking about sperm, not to be confused with semen. They are well known for their job of fertilizing the egg, which of course leads to pregnancy. But how much do you really know about sperm?

Sperm are the male reproductive cells, the little swimmers with a head, mid-piece and tail. Semen is the fluid that carries the sperm through the female reproductive tract.

You don’t have to be a sperm producer to have expert knowledge in this area of sexual health—you never know when you are going to meet someone that will be impressed by your sperm knowledge. Dr. David Shin, the chief at the Center for Sexual Health & Fertility in the Department of Urology at the Hackensack University Medical Center, lists 13 facts about sperm that you probably didn’t know.

Five of Dr. Shin’s sperm facts from FoxNews.com that may blow your mind are:

  • Sperm only contributes to five percent of the total semen volume. The rest is made up of fluids and nutrients that protect the sperm in their travels.
  • Healthy men make 70-150 million sperm a day.
  • Sperm can only swim forward, not backwards.
  • Extended time in hot tubs or saunas can decrease a man’s sperm count. Heat negatively affects sperm production.
  • Lubricants, lotions, and saliva all result in decreased sperm motility. (A study published by Fertility and Sterility says lubricants tended to be toxic, despite labeling.)

Guys, if the thought of having kids is far-fetched right now, you should still be concerned about keeping your sperm healthy. Starting around age 25, the quality of a man’s sperm begins to go downhill. With only 25 to 50 percent of sperm actually moving forward to the finish line (a woman’s egg), you’re going to need all the sperm you can get—for when the time is right.

Sperm are interesting “characters” but it’s up to you males to keep yourself healthy and in turn produce many, many healthy sperm. They (and the future mother of your children) will thank you later. Happy swimming!