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When pregnant the first time – or if being worried that something could go wrong with the pregnancy – a common question to wonder about, but maybe not actually asked is whether it is still OK to have sex during the pregnancy?
Luckily, in most case the simple answer is YES!
Fortunately, if you’re experiencing a risk-free nine months, there is no reason why you shouldn’t continue to partake in sex during pregnancy right up until the birth (I’m sure you’ve all heard the old wives tale of sex being a method of inducing labor!), although the logistics may need a bit of tweaking for obvious reasons during the third trimester!
With such a sudden and dramatic change in hormones, many women find that their sex drive dramatically increases during the first and second trimesters, much to their partner’s delight. However, some women find that they are simply not in the mood for sex during pregnancy, and this is also completely normal. With nausea, tiredness and an ever growing baby bump, it can often be difficult to feel sexy.
Make sure to discuss any feelings of this nature with your partner – pregnancy can be a complicated time for Dad too as he can’t always tell how you’re feeling or what you’re going through.
Will sex during pregnancy hurt the baby?
No. The idea of sex during pregnancy hurting the baby is often what causes hesitation but as long as you have a healthy pregnancy there is usually nothing to worry about. Throughout the majority of a pregnancy, the entrance to the cervix will remained closed and protected with a mucous plug to keep out any infection. Additionally, the baby is well protected from the outside world as it is encased safely inside the amniotic sac (your ‘waters’).
Reasons not to have sex while pregnant?
There are some complications of pregnancy which may mean it is safer to put a hold on any sexual activity. If you’ve experienced any sort of vaginal bleeding during your pregnancy, either explained or unexplained, it is always wise to check with the Doctor or other healthcare professional whose care you have been under before having intercourse.
If you notice any bleeding immediately following sex, it is also best to get yourself checked out before going in for round two. Similarly, if you know you have a condition which can cause bleeding, such as a low-lying placenta (a placenta which has attached to the bottom of the uterus, either covering or partially covering the entrance to the cervix), be sure to seek professional medical advice beforehand.
If your waters have broken, it is important to refrain from sex as the baby will be far less protected and much more prone to infection. This is why many hospitals and birthing centers follow guidelines ensuring that women who have not given birth within 24 hours of their waters breaking have their labours induced.
If you are prone to prenatal contractions, other than the harmless Braxton Hick contractions, your doctor may also prohibit intercourse and actually any sexual activity that may lead to orgasm on your part.
How do I ‘do it’?
Be creative! Traditional positions sometimes just won’t work, especially during the third trimester. A massive baby bump and swollen, tender breasts often means that having your partner on top is out of the question. Many women find that lying on their side with their partner lying behind them works well, as well as the woman on top or rear entry (doggy style), but pregnancy offers a great opportunity for experimentation!
Whether you and your partner decide to continue having sex during pregnancy or not, the important thing is to spend some intimate quality time together before the baby arrives and life becomes so wonderfully hectic.