Is Sex Safe During Pregnancy?
It’s completely normal to be worried about protecting the health and safety of your developing baby. Many couples, especially first-time parents, worry about how pursuing intimacy in their relationship will affect the little one growing inside mama.
Which brings us to the age-old question. Is sex safe during pregnancy?
The simple answer is yes, for normal pregnancies sex while your pregnant is fine. However, there are a few things you should be aware of before jumping into the sack.
Change in Your Libido
While some women crave sex during pregnancy, it’s the last thing on other women’s minds. Pregnancy can affect your body in ways you’d never expect. So, based on your hormonal functions, you may not be in the mood.
Some things that can have an effect on your libido early on during pregnancy include:
- Breast tendency
Later in your pregnancy, things such as weight gain, and back pain can dampen your enthusiasm for sexual intercourse.
Keep in mind, your partner can be affected by your pregnancy as well. Their desires may be toned down to fatigue, or simply anxious about hurting the baby during intercourse.
When is Sex Safe During Pregnancy?
For the most part, sex during pregnancy is completely safe for everyone involved. Your developing baby is protected by both the amniotic fluid in your uterus and the strong muscles of the uterus itself.
Sexual activity won’t affect the baby in the least.
You may be wondering about alternative forms of sex as well. While some alternative sexual activities are completely safe for both you and baby, others might be more detrimental to your health.
- Oral Sex. When receiving oral, make sure your partner doesn’t blow air into your vagina. In some rare instances, doing so can block a blood vessel (air embolism) which can be harmful to both mother and baby.
- Anal Sex. Vaginal sex should be avoided directly after anal sex to prevent infection-causing bacteria from spreading from the rectum to the vagina. Occasionally, pregnant women may find anal sex uncomfortable due to pregnancy-related hemorrhoids.
If you are pregnant and plan to have sex with someone you are not in a monogamous relationship with, using condoms is recommended to protect against possible transmission of STDs.
Any sexual position that you feel comfortable is completely safe. However, towards the second trimester, you’ll likely feel more comfortable in positions that are not directly putting pressure on your back.
When is Abstinence Recommended?
During your final weeks of pregnancy, your doctor may suggest abstaining from sex. Both female orgasms and semen can stimulate contractions. This is due to the release of a chemical called prostaglandins which is said to trigger contractions when you’re close to your due date late in the third trimester.
If you have a history of pre-term labor or have any of the following conditions your doctor will likely recommend practicing abstinence during the remainder of your pregnancy.
- Vaginal bleeding
- Leaking amniotic fluid
- Carrying multiples
- Placenta is covering (partially or completely) the cervical opening
Sex with a partner that has been diagnosed with an STD or STI should be avoided due to possible risk of your or your baby contracting the STD. At the very least, it’s important to use protection as always when any sexual activity with a person that has been diagnosed with any STD.
While usually, sex is safe during pregnancy. However, there are certain conditions that may require abstinence. Experiment with a mixture of positions throughout your pregnancy that offer the most support and comfort during sexual activities.
Don’t hesitate to give us a call to schedule an appointment with your doctor. Our caring staff is always available to answer any questions or concerns via phone regarding sexual intercourse during your pregnancy as well.
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