Sex During Pregnancy – Is it safe?
Sex during pregnancy: What’s OK, what’s not!
For some women, a heightened sense of libido is a welcomed side effect of pregnancy, whilst for others, sex is the last thing on her mind. Either way, here’s what you need to know about sex during pregnancy.
Is it OK to have sex during pregnancy?
Lets start by confirming that your developing baby is very well protected by the amniotic fluid in your uterus, as well as by the strong muscles of the uterus itself. Sexual activity will not harm your baby, provided you do not have complications such as preterm labour or placenta problems. However, while it’s safe to have sex during pregnancy you may find significant changes in the level of comfort (or discomfort) and sexual desire.
Especially if you have been suffering with nausea, sex can be the last thing you want to engage in.
Can sex during pregnancy cause a miscarriage?
Having sex during pregnancy won’t provoke a miscarriage. Most miscarriages occur because the fetus isn’t developing normally.
What’s the best position to have sex during pregnancy?
As a general rule, whatever makes you feel comfortable. Oral sex is also safe during pregnancy. As your pregnancy progresses, you may need to adapt positions and experiment to find what works best. Your body shape will inhibit some positions as can you level of energy and breathlessness. Let your creativity take over, as long as you keep mutual pleasure and comfort in mind.
Do we need to use a condom?
Having a sexually transmitted infection during pregnancy can cause serious health problems for you and your baby. You should avoid all forms of sex — vaginal, oral and anal — if your partner has an active or recently diagnosed sexually transmitted infection.
When should sex be avoided?
Breast stimulation, female orgasms and certain hormones in semen called prostaglandins can cause uterine contractions. While particularly helpful for those in the final days of pregnancy to help get things moving, throughout the rest of your pregnancy your midwife or Doctor may advise against sex if:
- You have unexplained vaginal bleeding
- You’re leaking amniotic fluid
- Your cervix begins to open prematurely (cervical incompetence)
- Your placenta partly or completely covers your cervical opening (placenta previa)
- You have a history of preterm labour or premature birth
I really don’t want to have sex, what do I do?
Just like any other time in your life, if you don’t want to have sex then you don’t have to. It’s perfectly OK. There’s a lot more to intimacy than just sex. But it’s important to communicate with your partner about your needs and concerns in an open and loving way. If sex is difficult, unappealing or off-limits, try cuddling, kissing or massage.
It’s important not to shut your partner out as parenting requires effective open communication starting during pregnancy.