Sex During Pregnancy: Is It Safe To Have Sex During Pregnancy?

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Is it safe to have sex during pregnancy? Does sex during pregnancy harm the baby? Can sex during pregnancy trigger labor? Can sex during pregnancy cause miscarriage? Is oral sex during pregnancy safe? And finally, when should a pregnant woman stop having sex? All these are some of the questions you might be asking yourself at the moment. Let’s have a look at each of these questions one by one.

Is it safe to have sex during pregnancy?

It’s true that libido or the urge to have sex surge during pregnancy. For this reason, most women seek to know whether it’s safe to enjoy sex when pregnant. According to John Hopkins Medicine, sex during pregnancy is usually safe for both the baby and mother. Most women with normal pregnancy may continue enjoying sex while pregnant right up until their water breaks.

However, there are circumstances that may need you to change your sexual activity during pregnancy, or even abstain completely. A few of the situations include placenta previa (when the placenta covering is near the opening of the cervix), history of miscarriage or threatened miscarriage, multiple pregnancy, preterm labor (giving birth before 37 weeks), and bleeding during pregnancy.

Why is sex during pregnancy more enjoyable (for most women)?

Most women find sex to be more enjoyable during pregnancy. This is as a result of an increase in vaginal lubrication and the engorgement of the genital area helps most women get an orgasm for the first time. Some even get multiple orgasms during pregnancy. Additionally, sex during pregnancy means you’re not on birth control pills, which makes it more enjoyable and pleasurable for both partners.

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Does sex during pregnancy harm the baby?

Sex during pregnancy doesn’t hurt the baby. The amniotic sac together with the strong uterine muscles protects the baby. Furthermore, the thick mucus plug sealing the cervix ensures the baby is guarded against any infection. During sex, the penis doesn’t go past the vagina, which means it won’t reach the baby.

Does sex induce labor?

Sex during pregnancy does not induce labor if you’ve normal of low-risk pregnancy. Orgasm or sexual stimulation cannot induce labor. Although orgasms can cause mild uterine contractions, similar to the effects of nipple stimulation and the prostaglandins in semen, the contractions are often temporary and harmless.

Can sex cause miscarriage?

Can sex during pregnancy cause miscarriage? NO, it cannot. Sex is safe and healthy for pregnant women, but there are a few exceptions. If you’ve had a threat of miscarriage, prior miscarriage, prior preterm birth, if your cervix is dilated, or if you’re experiencing unexplained vaginal bleeding or discharge then you need to consult your doctor.

It’s also worth noting that all women experience uterine contractions during orgasm. These contractions are safe in a normal pregnancy and do not harm the baby. The contractions will be more intense because your uterus is swollen and your blood flow increased. According to American Pregnancy Association, most miscarriages occur in the first trimester. However, most of them are a result of abnormal chromosomes in the fetus, not intercourse.

Is oral sex safe during pregnancy?

To a large extent oral sex when a woman is pregnant is safe. It is okay to lick, but blowing air into the genital area should be completely avoided. Blowing air into the vagina can potentially cause air embolism, a condition where a bubble of air gets into the blood stream. Air embolism is life threatening to both the mother and baby. Oral sex while a woman is pregnant is also unsafe if your partner has an active outbreak of oral herpes. Your partner should also not give you oral sex in the third trimester if he has ever had oral herpes. There is sufficient evidence that one can transmit HIV through micro-abrasions or tiny cuts in the mouth. For this reason, ensure you know your partner’s HIV status prior to allowing him to give you some oral pleasure.

Why does sex during pregnancy feel different?

Just because sex during pregnancy is safe doesn’t mean all women fancy having sex. Most women report that sex feels completely different. Some women find it pleasurable, while others find it less so. Increased blood flow to the pelvic area causes engorgement of the genitals, which leads to heightened sensation. This may add to pleasure during sex as the vagina may become moister, which is often a plus. On the other hand, genital engorgement in some women creates a feeling of discomfort.

Your breasts may feel tender, tingly, and unusually sensitive to touch, particularly in the first trimester. Although the tenderness subsides after a while, your breasts may remain more sensitive. To some women the heightened sensitivity is a turn-on, while for others it isn’t, and prefers their breasts remain untouched at all.

When should a pregnant woman stop having sex?

As earlier mentioned, it’s safe for pregnant women to continue having sex until the day of giving birth. However, there are instances when it’ll be safer for a pregnant woman to stop having sex. Some reasons that justify the need to refrain from sex include: placenta previa, genital herpes outbreak, ruptured membranes (broken water), and unexplained vaginal bleeding. If you’ve been having sex throughout your pregnancy and your water breaks, you should stop immediately. Having sex at such a moment could introduce germs and bacteria into the vaginal canal. This could harm the baby.


As you can see, sex during pregnancy and whether you should stop depends on quite a number of factors. If everything is okay on your side and you enjoy it, then it’s safe to continue. However, if you feel uncomfortable, bleeding or any of the issues highlighted above, then the best thing to do is to quit, and be safe.

Updated: July 7, 2019 — 12:53 pm

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