Categorized | Pregnancy Articles

Sex during Pregnancy

A major doubt that women have during pregnancy is ‘is sex during pregnancy safe?’ For most of the couples their sexual relationship changes during pregnancy. Some may consider this the best time for making love while others may consider this a source of worry and fear.

Sex during pregnancy is safe only if your pregnancy is progressing normally. This implies that you are at low risk of complications like miscarriage or pre-term labour. You can discuss this issue with you care provider in detail. He/she will let you know of any complications your case faces and take measures to reduce any mishap.

But you may not always want to have it. Many women around this time feel that their desire for sex fluctuates during certain stages in the pregnancy. The hormonal changes, fatigue and nausea may keep the thought of sex way away from your mind. During the second trimester, due to increased blood flow to the sexual organs and breast you may feel the urge to have sex. However, by the third trimester, due to the additional weight, back pain, difficulty in sleeping, and other symptoms your desire for sex may again seem to dim.

It is important that around this time you and your partner share a good understanding and open lines of communication regarding your sexual relationship. Discuss about other ways to satisfy your need for closeness, such as kissing, caressing or holding each other. Also you may have to experiment with other positions for sex to see which is most comfortable.

Many women can also lose the drive for sex during this time as they are preoccupied with the approaching date of delivery and the happiness of becoming a parent.

You may want to discuss with your care provider safe positions for sex during this time or research the best practices for sex to avoid any unwanted situations. You should avoid sex at this time if complications have been identified in your case by your health care provider. Common risk factors include:

•    If you have a history or threat of miscarriage
•    In case you have a history of pre-term labor or signs indicating the risk of pre-term labor
•    You experience unexplained vaginal bleeding, discharge or cramping
•    Leakage of amniotic fluid, a fluid that surrounds the baby
•    In case you experience a condition called placenta previa, wherein placenta is down so low that it covers the cervix
•    Also if you are experiencing a condition called incompetent cervix in which the cervix is weakened and dilates prematurely, increasing the risk for miscarriage or premature delivery
•    If you are carrying multiple foetuses

Sex during pregnancy is not harmful for the baby directly. The baby is completely protected by the amniotic sac and the strong muscles of the uterus. Also a thick mucus plug covers the cervix to keep the baby away from any kind of infection. Moreover the penis does not come in contact with the foetus during sex.

Also many women are worried about intercourse or orgasms leading to contraction. But in case of pregnancy with low risk the answer is no. The contraction that you experience after the orgasm is completely different from the contraction that happens during labour. Never the less it is advisable to cross check with your care provider to ensure that you pregnancy is in the low-risk category. Your doctor may recommend you to stop having sex during the final weeks of pregnancy for safety. This is because the semen that contains a particular chemical may actually stimulate contractions.

In case after the orgasm you feel severe contraction for more than 30 minutes, you need to consult your doctor as it can induce labour. Cramping is serious when accompanied with bleeding. Hence you need to look out for pink spotting. Also if you waters break call the doctor immediately.