Turkey Baster: Pregnancy Success Rate & How to Use it

What is turkey baster? How do you get pregnant with this method of insemination at home? Does it work?

With advancement in technology, a good number of women are conceiving without having sex. Earlier on this method could be performed at a doctor’s office.

What is a turkey baster?

Turkey baster refers to artificial insemination mostly done at home. It is also called the intracervical insemination (ICI) method.Turkey baster

You can use a special baster device or a normal syringe as your artificial insemination at home kit to inject semen into the vagina to get pregnant.

Therefore, if you cannot get the special tool, you may opt to use a syringe that can be found at a drug store.


There are different types of this device as you will see in the pictures below. Some are made of glass, others are made of stainless steel. Each offers its own advantages.Glass turkey baster with cleaning brush

Turkey baster pictures

You can determine your best turkey baster depending on your preferences.

Can you get pregnant using a turkey baster?

Yes. You could get pregnant using the turkey baster method, only when the menstrual cycle timing is right.

  • You might choose to have this method performed at the hospital or just do it yourself at home.
  • Both ways it is possible to conceive a baby successfully.

However, for effectiveness, you must adhere to the insemination procedure apart from the fact that you must be ovulating at the time of the procedure.

Success rate

What is the success rate of this ICI method?

While injecting semen into the cervix may seem obvious and a sure way of getting pregnant, you should not always anticipate a high success rate.

  • Statistics show that the success rate of home insemination methods ranges between 10 and 15 percent per menstrual cycle.
  • The success stories may not be the same as those of intercourse because timing and conditions may not be very ideal.

To increase your chances of getting pregnant fast, time your ovulation well and use a clean insemination syringe.

How to use it

Insemination at home is pretty simple. Here is how to carry out this procedure:

What you need

  • Syringe or turkey baster
  • Semen sample in a clean cup


  1. Draw back the syringe or the baster and push to release the trapped air.
  2. Suck the semen in a cup using the baster or a syringe
  3. Insert the syringe gradually into the vagina until at the cervix opening
  4. Inject the sperm gradually
  5. Remain still for about half an hour to keep the sperm inside the vagina.

You may use saline water to clear off the semen in the syringe. Add some drops into the syringe and shake a bit to get the air out and inject slowly.

  • Fertilization could occur depending on the timing.

Tips to remember

Here are the things to do for you to increase chances of conception:

  • Get into a comfortable position where you can stay still for about half an hour.
  • Keep your hips raised or lie on the side to have the syringe penetrate easily.
  • Inject the sperm slowly to avoid spilling off.

Does it really work?

The artificial home insemination method works well when all conditions are followed to the later.

Research shows that 70 percent of women using this method have a chance of conceiving in their third cycle.

When is the best time to inseminate?

Just like in intercourse, the best time for one to get pregnant is during ovulation. Here are a few things to look out for before you try the turkey baster method:

  • Use an ovulation prediction kit. It can show your luteinizing hormone levels
  • Keep tracking your menstrual cycle it is the best way to know you re ovulating. Ovulation takes place from the 10th to the 16 the day from the first day of your last period.
  • Look out for signs of ovulation. Check for cervical mucus thickness and minor cramping
  • Keep track of your body basal temperature. During ovulation your body temperature rises as a result of hormonal rise and fall.

Besides proper timing, pregnancy will not occur in the following situations:

  • When unhygienic equipment is used.
  • When the sperm specimen is not injected far enough into the cervix.
  • When a weak sperm that is not able to fertilize an egg is used.


Most syringes are to be used only once. However, a stainless steel or glass turkey baster may need cleaning and storage for future use.

Even after washing with an antiseptic as below you need to sterilize the equipment every time before you use it.

Simple cleaning procedure:

  1. Add equal parts of vinegar and water into a bowl
  2. Immerse the used equipment and leave for half an hour
  3. Remove the baster and dry it with a clean, dry towel
  4. Store in a safe place.


This is a delicate yet straightforward task. It is vital that you ensure the following precautions before and during insemination at home. If by any chance, there is something you are not understanding, you can contact your doctor earlier enough.

  • If for example, you obtain sperm from unknown sources, ensure that it undergoes thorough screening to rule out diseases.
  • Keep your working area clean to avoid contamination that could later cause a vaginal infection.
  • You should stay calm not to injure yourself during syringe or turkey baster insertion.

Possible side effects

Is it safe? Turkey baster home insemination method is safe. You only need to be cautious about your personal and equipment hygiene to avoid infections.

However, some women have reported mild cramping following the procedure. The lower abdominal cramps usually last for about two days afterward.


  1. Intrauterine insemination (June 2014): http://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/intrauterine-insemination/home/ovc-20205399
  2. Intrauterine insemination (May 2014): https://www.mayoivf.com/iui-treatment-in-bhopal-mp/