For a lot of women, the post-coital pee is de rigueur. Peeing after sex, as your doctor, best friend, and mom have probably told you countless times, is the best way to avoid a UTI. Spooning can wait. But what about when you’re trying to get pregnant? Will peeing after sex force the sperm out of your vagina before those little guys have a fighting chance to swim past your cervix?
Good news: the answer is no. Peeing after sex has no impact on your chances of conceiving. If you’re prone to UTIs, go ahead and pee. If not, you can enjoy a good cuddle. Your chances of getting pregnant are the same either way.
To explain why it’s perfectly fine to pee after sex, let’s first talk about semen. A single load of ejaculate contains between 20 and 400 million sperm. Immediately after ejaculation, about 65 percent of the sperm break free from the semen and start traveling toward the cervix (aided by your vaginal discharge AKA cervical mucus). Some of the sperm will remain in the back of your vagina (in the posterior fornix) and fall out anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours later. The rest—along with a lot of non-sperm material including proteins and vitamins—will fall out of the vagina immediately. (Don’t be alarmed if it feels like A LOT of fluid comes out of your vagina after sex. Only about one percent of semen is sperm!)
By the time you get up to pee, the fastest sperm will have already made its way up through the cervix. Anything that falls out immediately after sex or when you get up to pee wouldn’t have made it through your cervix anyway.