After the excitement of a new pregnancy calms, expecting parents (especially first-time parents) have hundreds of questions. One of the most common involves sex during pregnancy – is it safe?
Sex during a normal pregnancy is usually safe unless your doctor has recommended otherwise. That said, there are a few things to be aware of – a few of these include precautions to take, potential side effects, instances where you should avoid pregnancy sex, and positions that can help make it a more comfortable experience. Keep reading to learn more about all of these!
Will I Be in the Mood?
Everyone experiences a different sex drive during their pregnancy. Some women are never in the mood, while others can never leave the sheets. For those that do experience a high sex drive, this usually occurs once the second trimester hits.
Many have reported sex during pregnancy as a magical experience. Because your blood volume increases during pregnancy, your breasts become swollen and your sensitivity is heightened. This can result in more powerful orgasms.
Can Sex Hurt the Baby?
Although many moms and dads worry about hurting the baby, this is a myth. Sex can’t cause a miscarriage (even if your partner is on the larger end of the penis spectrum). As much as dad would like to think his member is large enough to cause destruction, this won’t be the case. The baby is well-protected by plenty of cushioning in the womb – they will barely even notice!
When Not to Have Sex During Pregnancy
There are a few circumstances where doctors or midwives will recommend avoiding sex during your pregnancy.
- If you’ve experienced any heavy bleeding (sex can increase the risk of further bleeding)
- You water has broken
- Your has ruptured membranes or is leaking
- You are at risk for early labor
- Your cervix has opened early
- You’re having twins (or more) and in the later stage of your pregnancy
What Type of Sex is Safe During Pregnancy?
Nearly all types of sex can be enjoyed during pregnancy. The recommendation is to avoid extremely rough sex that could damage the vagina or cervix.
Aside from this, protection is very important if you’re having sex with new people or a partner that has an STI that you haven’t caught. Catching an STI during pregnancy can cause serious effects and you can transfer it to your baby.
Tips + Best Positions
Need a few tips for pregnancy sex? For starters, have some lube handy – Pregnancy can cause vaginal dryness, so a lubricant can help make things run smoother.
Sex isn’t the easiest with a big round belly, so there are a few positions that can help support the stomach and control how deep he’s going (because going deeper might not feel good during pregnancy).
- Woman on top
- “Doggie” style
- Mutual masturbation
- Oral sex (do NOT blow air into the vagina, as strange as that may sound)
If you’re in the third trimester, doctors recommend skipping missionary altogether. Laying on your back can decrease the amount of blood that reaches the baby as well as elevate your blood pressure.
Side Effects of Pregnancy Sex
Although bedtime adventures are safe during a healthy pregnancy, there are still some side effects to be aware of (so you don’t panic if they do happen).
Cramping: Some women experience cramping after sex that lasts up to a couple of hours. However, this isn’t something to stress about – orgasm and semen can cause uterine contractions.
Spotting: Light spotting is another common occurrence after sex during pregnancy. Because your blood flow is increased during pregnancy, the blood vessels are more fragile on your cervix (meaning your partner’s penis rubbing against your cervix can cause light bleeding). However, call your doctor immediately if you experience period-like bleeding. This could signal the placenta breaking away from the uterus.
Fluid Discharge: This side effect is rare, but if it occurs after sex, it could be a sign that your water has broken or leaking. If this happens, make sure to call your doctor.