Sex During Pregnancy – Frequently Asked Questions

Sex During Pregnancy – Frequently Asked Questions

Sex during pregnancy is a topic that every couple wonders about. There are plethora of myths and beliefs surrounding this subject which need to be cleared in order to get the most out of your pregnancy and married life. Let’s find out these concerns in the below questions which are frequently asked by couples. But first, an overview on the subject.

Sex during pregnancy

Many people think pregnancy as a medical condition and the pregnant woman as extremely fragile. They think the act would lead to miscarriage or create other complications. In most cases, sex during pregnancy is absolutely safe; in fact sex helps in pregnancy in many ways.

However, unless you are suffering from some condition or your doctor advises you to do so, you don’t have to avoid sex. Sex might be uncomfortable in the first trimester and last few weeks before the delivery, but overall it is completely safe.

Is sex in pregnancy different from regular sex?

Yes and no. During pregnancy, a whole lot of changes take place in the body, it can be different for every other woman. In some women, there is increased flow of blood in the lower parts of the body which can increase sensitivity, while some other experience vaginal discharge which might make sex easier for them.

But on the other hand, some might not be lucky enough to have sex. These women can experience tiredness due to hormonal changes while the inflow of blood can make their sex uncomfortable and irritable.

Can sexual intercourse hurt my baby?

It is one of the most common concerns of a pregnant woman and sometimes it makes sense since they spend most of the time thinking about their baby. But the fact is just opposite. Sex does not harm your baby the least since the baby remains under the protective covering of the amniotic sac.

And for the men who are concerned about having sex, rest assured that no penis is long enough to get even close to the baby. The little one inside might slow down during the intercourse and then kick and twist after orgasm, that’s it. But even this is normal fetal reaction to any activity related to uterus. In simple words, sex during pregnancy doesn’t cause any harm, set aside the question of miscarriage.

Does pregnancy affects woman’s sexual desire?

Every pregnancy is different. Due to hormonal changes, some women may experience low libido and they can sometime go completely off the mood. This usually happens in the first trimester due to nausea and tiredness. However, the urge for intercourse returns in the second trimester with the decrease of these troubling symptoms and restore of energy.

What are the ideal sex positions during pregnancy?

There are couples who know that sex is safe during pregnancy but do not know which position is best for them. In the initial months, any position is safe (unless you are advised by the doctor) as long as you are comfortable. But as the bump grows, some positions might not be comfortable for a woman.

But there is nothing to worry about if you see that your belly is getting in the way. There are still plenty of positions and techniques you can apply to enjoy those nail-biting moments. Here are some:

  • Keeping weight off the stomach is the best position. Tell your partner to lie on his back and you on the top, most commonly known as cowboy style. In this way you are able to control both penetration and pace.
  • Side position or spooning is best when you want to avoid deep penetration. Just lie on your side and the partner will lie behind and penetrate. Take a pillow for support.
  • Doggy style is safe and especially helpful in the third trimester. It can also improve pelvic pain.
  • Modified missionary is another position to enjoy. Just lie on the edge of the bed with legs apart. Your partner would penetrate by standing or kneeling between your legs. This position is best in the first and second trimester; in the third trimester you should use a pillow behind your upper back in order to avoid dizziness.

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Are there any health benefits of sex during pregnancy?

Yes, there are many. You and your partner might have several bedrooms sessions before pregnancy and now you might not be straightforward for sex. But there are numerous health benefits, including those which can ease the symptoms right to some extent. Sex during pregnancy:

  1. Lowers blood pressure or risk of preeclampsia
  2. Sex releases endorphins, relax your muscles and help you get good sleep
  3. Orgasms releases oxytocin, a feel good hormone which can increase your tolerance for aches and pain
  4. Sex near the time of delivery can trigger labor due to prostaglandins hormones present in sperm
  5. Better orgasm as there is increased blood flow in perineal area creating more sensation

Does the baby benefits from sex in pregnancy?

Yes, but indirectly. As you burn calories during sex, it can make quite easier for you to prevent gaining extra weight, hence a stronger body and immune system that can shield your baby from the ill effects of cold and flu. There are emotional benefits as well. Feeling good makes your baby less exposed to stress hormones such as cortisol which means positive impact on the development of your little one.

Health risks - Who should avoid sex during pregnancy?

While there are no restrictions for the uncomplicated pregnancies, the doctor may suggest certain patients to avoid sex. These pregnant women include the one who have had history of placenta previa (placenta lying low in the uterus) and cervical insufficiency (weak cervix).

Moreover, if the water has broken, sex must be avoided. Women who are expecting twins or multiples should also avoid sex due to fear of various complications including preterm labor or premature birth.

Are condoms necessary?

Absolutely! if your partner has been recently diagnosed with sexually transmitted infections. Sexually transmitted diseases such as gonorrhea, chlamydia and HIV can harm your baby. So, if you think you or your partner are at risk, talk to your doctor and get tested. However, condom is generally not necessary if you are in a monogamous relationship.

Bleeding after sex – Is it harmful?

Sex can also cause bleeding after sex, it happens in about 15-20 percent of pregnancies, although it’s fairly normal. However, it may be because of some underlying condition such as placental abruption. Bleeding generally occurs in the second or third trimester. Also, if you are feeling pain or menstrual-like cramps after intercourse, you must call the doctor right away.

Takeaway

Sex during pregnancy can be an awesome experience if you follow the best practices. But the most important thing is that you must communicate your feelings with your partner. So, experience variety of methods, enjoy the blissful state and keep nourishing your relationship.

Sources

1. Sex during pregnancy. What's right and what's not (Mayoclinic) read more
2. Sex during pregnancy. read more
3. Facts about sex during pregnancy.  
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