Artificial Insemination at Home – Scheduling, Process and Success Rate

Artificial Insemination at Home - Scheduling, Process and Success Rate

There can be many reasons behind opting for artificial insemination. These include difficulty getting pregnant, the desire to be a single mother, and so on. Most people undergo artificial insemination procedures under the guidance of their gynaecologist, who generally has a good amount of experience regarding the subject. However, if you are someone who does not like the idea of doing this at a fertility clinic, there is the option of doing it at home as well. The most common method is known as the Turkey Baster method, as it involves the use of a handheld suction device used in preparing turkey meat. Based on this principle, there are various ways in which you can get it done. Many questions are often asked regarding this procedure. Will it be safe? Is it complicated? How successful are the chances of conceiving using home artificial insemination methods? All of these questions and more will be explained in the article below in detail.

What is Home Insemination?

The Turkey Baster was originally used as a home artificial insemination device, used by the woman herself in the privacy of her home. Once the required semen sample is collected in a cup or a bowl, it can be sucked up using the turkey baster. The next step involves inserting the baster into the vagina and squeezing the semen out. However, these days basters are not used; in fact, specialised syringes and home insemination kits are sold which can help you do the job.

Home Insemination

Creating a Plan with Doctor before Insemination

While this method can be performed at home, it helps to plan it out with your doctor beforehand. Here are a few points as to how your doctor can support you:

  • If you are not using your partner’s semen, please ensure you only obtain it from a source you can trust. The most useful resource here is your local sperm bank, which is often suggested by the doctor.
  • While the concept is simple, there are various factors regarding the conception of a viable foetus. Your doctor can help you figure out anything you need regarding ovulation, insemination procedure, and so on.
  • You can also request your doctor to provide you with a needleless syringe, preferably with a plunger which is longer than four inches.

Scheduling Insemination At-Home

Once your plan has been created, it is time to schedule at-home insemination. This requires you to understand your ovulation cycle.

  • It helps if you keep an eye on your own cycle to know when you might be producing ova.
  • You can also use an artificial insemination at home kit specifically designed to identify when you are ovulating by checking the levels of luteinising hormone in your urine.
  • Generally, ovulation occurs around ten to fifteen days after the first day of your period.
  • Another sign you can watch out for is the presence of a sticky translucent discharge from your vagina.
  • Several women also go through some cramping during ovulation.
  • You can measure your basal body temperature, as during ovulation the temperature goes through a slight increase. For this, you will have to procure a specific basal thermometer and take the measurements right after waking up before you step out of bed.
  • Even if you are ovulating when you artificially inseminate yourself, this does not mean you will get pregnant, as several unrelated reasons can be hindering your pregnancy.

How to Perform Artificial Insemination at Home?

Here are some basic points regarding what you will need and how to perform the artificial insemination process at home:

1. What You Will Need

  • Sterilised needless syringe
  • Clean cup or bowl to keep the semen
  • Towels and pillows for cleanliness and comfort
  • Anything you might need to help you relax, such as soothing music

2. How to Perform

  • Collect the semen in the cleaned and sterilised cup or bowl. It is important that a condom is not used for this purpose as it can contain certain chemicals that are spermicidal.
  • Pull the syringe plunger out, then push the air out of it. Now that a vacuum has been produced, you can dip the tip of the syringe in the bowl with the semen in it.
  • Suck as much of the semen as you can through the syringe. If required you can add some medical saline in the bowl to extract any remaining semen.
  • Remove any air bubbles formed in the syringe by gently tapping on the side. You can then slowly push the air out by pressing the plunger gently.
  • Now, place yourself in a comfortable position, as you will not be moving much for the next thirty minutes.
  • Keep a thick pillow below your waist so your hips are at a higher position than your upper body.
  • Gently insert the syringe into your vagina, and start injecting the semen as slowly as you possibly can. This is because the semen can escape the vagina if you spray it too fast.
  • Once all the syringe is entirely emptied, you can carry on with your daily activities.

Tips for Insemination

Keep in mind these tips if you plan to go through artificial insemination at home:

  • Please make sure that you only use sterilised items as this procedure can leave you open to the risk of infections.
  • Make sure the injection reaches all the way to the entrance of the cervix, making it much easier for the sperms to swim towards the egg in the uterus.
  • It is recommended to have an orgasm after the semen is injected. This is because, during orgasms, the cervical muscles contract and vacuum up any semen inside the uterus.
  • Please only use the equipment one time, and then throw it away. This avoids any contamination.
  • Make sure to wash your hands before and after the procedure.
  • Please stay in the same position for at least half an hour for the sperm to reach the egg.

How Does the Insemination Process Work?

This process works the same way as natural insemination. In this case, however, instead of a penis ejaculating semen into the vagina, you use a syringe to do the same thing. Once the sperms are in the cervix, they will enter the uterus, where one of them fuses with the egg, forming a zygote. The zygote then develops into a foetus over time.

How Much Time is Required for Artificial Insemination at Home?

You can attempt this method as many times as you want until you get results. As long as you ensure that you perform the procedure during your ovulation, it should work sooner or later. If it doesn’t seem to be working after repeated attempts, please contact your doctor.

Risk of Home Insemination

Some risks associated with artificial insemination at home:

  • Not placing the sperm deep enough so that it reaches the cervix.
  • Using unsanitary items or not cleaning your hands during the process.
  • Not trying enough times, as it may not work the first time.

What is Home Artificial Insemination Success Rate?

How effective is artificial insemination at home? The efficacy rate is slightly lower than what would happen with natural intercourse. For instance, anecdotal evidence shows that the chances of getting pregnant with artificial insemination at home are around ten to fifteen percent per ovulation, whereas with natural intercourse the chances are much higher, between twenty to thirty percent.

The sperm can be from your partner or an unknown donor. Sperm banks are the best option for the latter, as they keep specific and clear records about the genetics of the donor, the quality of the sperm, and so on. Please ensure you use a legal agreement when taking sperm from someone you know, in case only you want to have rights to the baby.

Also Read: What is Assisted Reproductive Technology?