You might be wondering why we ask all of our donors to abstain

Posted: 09 Nov 2017
Author: London Sperm Bank

You might be wondering why we ask all of our donors to abstain for 3-5 days from any ‘sexual activity’ before donating.  The short answer is that we are looking for the best sample that you can provide and studies suggest that saving your sperm for donation results in superior samples.

Ejaculating only once a day for two days can impact your semen on day of collection as studies have found that this will affect the volume and total sperm count. Several studies have shown that semen volume and sperm concentration increase with prolonged sexual abstinence but it may also affect how well they swim and survive. 

It isn’t crystal clear what the best amount of time to abstain is to get the optimum sample when you visit to produce but some guidelines are produced by leading bodies. The World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines recommend an abstinence period of 2–7 days prior to semen collection. However, the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE), suggest 3–4 days.

Although the impact of sexual abstinence on sperm parameters is still controversial, in our sperm bank we chose to follow an interval of 3 days between productions as a reference point. By choosing to donate you are already doing an incredibly generous thing and we don’t want you to have to abstain any longer than is necessary!