Precum or pre-ejaculate is a fluid that comes out of a penis when the penis owner becomes aroused. It can show up at any time during foreplay or during masturbation, and some people notice it, while others don’t.
It’s a very natural part of penis-owner anatomy, but there is still a lot of misconception about precum — what exactly it is, what purpose does it serve, and where does it come from.
Well, good news — today we’re here to discuss everything there is to know about precum, aka pre-ejaculate.
So, let’s start from the very beginning:
Pre-Ejaculate vs. Ejaculate
Many people are confused about the difference between precum (pre-ejaculate) and semen (ejaculate).
Both fluids come out of the penis, both of them come out during the sexual activity, so are they really that different?
The answer to this question is yes.
Semen is a fluid that’s produced in the testes (aka testicles), and it carries sperm which has an important part to play in the continuation of the human race (not to be dramatic or anything).
Pre-ejaculate or precum is made in a different part of male anatomy, has a different structure, and serves a totally different purpose than semen.
Where Does Precum or Pre-Ejaculate Come From?
Cowper’s gland, a pair of pea-sized glands located close to the urethra, is responsible for producing precum.
It has tubes that are all connected to the same track where pee and sperm also travel via the penis, and it’s always released by the body involuntary when the penis-owner is aroused.
What Does Precum Consist Of?
Precum is an alkaline fluid, and it mainly consists of mucus, water, and some other gel-like substances.
While the gland that produces pre-ejaculate doesn’t produce or store sperm, it’s important to note that precum can contain sperm in it.
In the study published back in 2010, the researchers found that 11 subjects out of 27 (41%) released a pre-ejaculate fluid that had sperm in it.
Researchers also noted that 10 out of those subjects (37%) had sperm that was still active.
What Is the Purpose of Precum?
There are two notable functions of precum, and both are equally important.
First, the precum functions as a natural lubricant for sexual activity for people with penises, just like arousal fluid is for people with vaginas.
It helps to reduce friction during sexual intercourse, which in turn makes the whole experience more pleasurable and not painful.
Another purpose of the precum is to neutralize the acidity in the urethra track, making it the perfect environment for sperm to survive and pass.
Pee and sperm use the same track to travel through the penis. However, their PH balances are completely different — pee is acidic, and sperm is alkaline.
Precum is alkaline, and it serves the function of neutralizing the urethra track before the sperm is released, allowing it to survive and reach its goal without issues.
So, Does This Mean You Can Skip on the Lube?
While it’s true that one of the main purposes of precum is to lubricate the penis and make sexual intercourse more pleasant and enjoyable, it doesn’t mean that you should rely solely on it to make sex smooth.
The amount of precum varies for different people the same way the arousal fluid amount varies. So, you shouldn’t solely rely on precum to do the job of the lubricant.
It’s also important to note that pre-ejaculate might not be the safest option as a lube alternative for people who don’t use alternative forms of protection from getting pregnant.
How Much Precum Does the Body Produce?
The amount of precum that your body produces varies from person to person. It can be anywhere between a few drops to a teaspoon on average.
In most cases, the amount of precum that penis-owners produce is not enough to lubricate the penis enough for penetration. However, there are some penis owners who produce very large amounts of precum.
Large amounts of pre-ejaculate is not a health concern, according to studies. However, it can be uncomfortable when the amount of precum penis-owner releases soaks the underwear when they’re aroused.
If the amount of precum your penis produces when you are aroused causes issues and extreme un-comfort, then it might be a good idea to see a doctor.
They can prescribe a special medication that can help deal with the excess amount of pre-ejaculate fluid.
There Is Not Much You Can Do To Control the Amount of Precum Your Body Produces
Some penis-owners might want to find ways to increase the production of precum to make their sexual experiences better.
Just like penis-owners think that increasing their semen volume will make them more manly, they think that increasing the volume of their precum will give them an advantage in bed.
However, the amount of precum your body produces is not dependent on you. Dr. Srikanth Reddy writes, “there is no way you can increase the quantity of precum. There are some traditional therapies like Tentex Forte available which claim to increase the pre-cum as well, but my patients have never noticed any benefit by that.”
Each body works differently, and for this reason, there is no way to increase the amount of pre-ejaculate fluid.
And because there are different ways to enhance sexual pleasure and experience via different lubricants, there is no need to increase the amount of precum your body produces.
So, don’t fall for the cheap gimmicks of taking pills, vitamins, and supplements to increase the amount of pre-ejaculate fluid.
While a healthy and balanced active lifestyle can improve your stamina and sexual satisfaction in general, none of it will have to do anything with the amount of precum your body produces.
Yes, Precum Will Make You Pregnant
The question most people are curious about is whether or not precum can make you pregnant. If it’s not really semen, then there shouldn’t be any issues, right?
Well, not quite.
As we already discussed at the beginning of this article, studies show that there can be a certain amount of sperm in the pre-ejaculate that’s released from the penis during sexual intercourse.
There is no way to tell whether there will be semen in your precum. However, it’s always best to stay on the safe side and assume that there is a chance for it.
No, the Pull-Out Method Doesn’t Work
The pull-out method or withdrawal method is a very popular choice of contraception among people, mostly because it’s free and doesn’t require a lot of planning in advance.
However, it’s not a very effective method of protecting yourself from pregnancy. In fact, studies show that the pull-out method has a 20% failure rate, compared with condoms (13%) and hormonal birth control (6%).
So, if you’re trying to practice safe sex, using the withdrawal method is not the most responsible option as there is no way to stop precum from coming out of the penis during sexual intercourse.
Also, the withdrawal method doesn’t protect against another concern people have about sexual activity — STI’s.
Yes, Precum Will Transfer STI’s
Precum is a bodily fluid, which means that it can carry bacteria, viruses, and other substances that cause sexually transmitted infections like HIV, chlamydia, gonorrhea, and many more.
There are studies done on pre-ejaculate carrying the HIV in it, so if you’re practicing sex (anal, oral, or vaginal) with someone you don’t know or someone who is HIV-positive, it’s best to protect yourself by using a condom.
Just like there is no way to increase the amount of pre-ejaculate fluid your body produces, there is also no way to stop it from coming out when you’re aroused.
So, really the only way to ensure that pre-ejaculate doesn’t enter a vagina is by wearing a protective barrier, aka a condom, whenever you’re engaging in sexual activity.