If you are pregnant or trying to be pregnant, you may be wondering whether it's safe or not to have sex during pregnancy.
Is it going to harm the baby? Will it hurt? Probably, never before had sex become such an agony between you and your partner. Keep calm, because pregnancy and sex aren't incompatible at all. In general, you should be able to have intercourse without any problems, though there are specific cases in which you'd better avoid it.
In the following article, you'll find all the information you need to combine sex and pregnancy without worries.
Is it safe to have sex during pregnancy?
No matter what you may have heard from other people, baseless comments or theories, 'pregnant sex' is totally okay until your due date as long as you are having a normal pregnancy. It is also true that some women won't be able to completely enjoy it, due to the pregnancy symptoms. Morning sickness, fatigue, sensitive breasts, back pain or excess gas, among others, can make you take a step back when it comes to having sex during pregnancy. The physical side effects can definitely bum you out, and so can the psychological ones. Some future mums fear the idea of sex and pregnancy, because they are concerned about their babies’ health even after being told that it's harmless.
Will my baby be ok if I have sex during pregnancy?
Yes, your little one is going to be fine as long as you are careful enough, especially in the third trimester of your pregnancy (by then, your big baby bump will make things more difficult). The cervix is sealed and protected by a thick mucous membrane that will prevent your little one from getting damaged. The amniotic fluid in your womb will also work as a shield to keep the baby safe. When women have an orgasm they tend to get some uterine contractions, but those very rarely trigger preterm labours.
How 'adventurous' can I be?
Now you know that having sexual activity while expecting a baby is okay, but is there anything that's off limits? You can be as 'playful' as you want, but here's some advice. For example, oral sex by itself doesn't entail problems, though it can be threatening for your baby if your partner has or has had oral herpes, which could affect the baby-to-be. Another risk involving oral sex happens if your partner blows air into your vagina. Though it's rare, a burst of air could create an air embolism in your blood stream that could be deadly for both you and the baby.
What about the semen? Well, you can swallow your partner's semen when pregnant, unless he has Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs). Don't forget that, among others, AIDS can be transmitted to through semen. In case you are not sure if your partner is STD free, avoid oral sex and don't forget to use condoms.
Regarding anal sex, it may not be the best option when you are expecting a baby. If you have haemorrhoids, a usual pregnancy symptom, the intercourse could be painful. Also, combining anal with vaginal sex increases the chances of getting infections, so be aware of it.
What are the best pregnant sex positions?
Besides all this advice, there are recommended positions for sex during pregnancy that you shouldn't miss and that can make the experience a lot more exciting and enjoyable. Try with:
- Being on top of your partner, either on a bed or on a chair, which will allow you to avoid any pressure over your womb.
- Spooning, lying one next to each other, with your partner behind you
- Doggy style, on all fours, which will keep your abdomen free from any contact
- Lying with your pelvis at the edge of the bed, with your legs spread, while the man stands in front of you
After all, though, you need to stick with a comfortable way that works for you. You are pregnant, but that's not an excuse to stop being creative and passionate!
When should I avoid sex?
As mentioned in the beginning of the article, pregnancy and sex are mostly safe, though there are a few times in which the doctor will recommend that you stop having it, either temporarily or for the rest of your pregnancy. You should avoid sex during pregnancy if:
- You are bleeding (spotting) after the intercourse
- The amniotic fluid leaks out of your vagina
- There's an unusual pain starting after the sexual activity
- The cervix is opening sooner than expected
- The placenta is covering the opening part of your cervix, which is also called placenta previa
- You have multiples on the way
- Your waters break
- You've had preterm labour in the past
Can it provoke premature labour?
When women have an orgasm they tend to get some uterine contractions, but those very rarely trigger preterm labours. Anyway, if you have a history of premature birth or are at high risk of having one, you should consult the doctor about it, who will probably tell you to avoid sex during pregnancy.
What can you expect?
Your sexual activity changes as you go through different stages of your pregnancy. If we analyse it by trimesters, these are the most common things to expect:
- First trimester: women tend to be overwhelmed during the first weeks of their pregnancies. The pregnancy hormones drive you crazy and the side effects hit you over and over. Plus, you may be afraid of hurting the embryo at such an early stage of its development. However, and as weird as it may sound, this is the best time for having sex during pregnancy. The pelvic area is more irrigated, and that generally leads to extra pleasure and better orgasms.
- Second trimester: Most of the pregnancy symptoms are over and you are starting to look fantastic, with a growing bump and well-shaped curves. But as sexy as you can feel, your fears will strike back once your little one starts to move inside your womb. Now you feel him, he's there and the last thing you want is to put his life in danger. That same feeling can affect your partner.
- Third trimester: Your growing bump may be making things harder for you and your partner, as you try with multiple positions to avoid hurting him. Lucky you, and far from threatening your baby, sex during pregnancy can help him calm down!
As you can see, sex during pregnancy is perfectly fine in most cases. That doesn't mean that you can't forget about your growing baby. Have fun with your partner, but be cautious. And, remember, if there's any unusual sign during or after having intercourse, don't think about it twice: run to the hospital.