Every couple has hidden questions when it comes to sex and pregnancy. Is it safe to have sex when I’m pregnant?
What if I don’t enjoy it? What positions should I stay in while having sex in pregnancy? Are there any dangerous sex positions? Will my pregnancy affect my partner’s desire? These questions cause a lot of anguish for new mothers and we will attempt to provide as much information as we can to allay your fears.
Is it safe to have sex when I’m pregnant?
Parents worry that the movement of the penis or vagina will affect the baby. For most normal pregnancies, no harm can come to the baby who is cushioned in amniotic fluid. During orgasm, the heart rate rises and this can cause the baby to move. It is also normal to experience mild cramping but this shouldn’t last long.
When can sex be unsafe?
Doctors advise women to abstain till their 14th week if they have vaginal bleeding, heavy cramping or pain. Histories of cervical weakness and placenta previa or these other conditions may warrant an abstinence as well. The cervical mucus plug prevents infections from reaching the baby but STIs can still affect your baby so practice safe sex – either with one faithful partner or use condoms with other people.
Will I enjoy it?
Certain hormonal changes happen in pregnancy that can affect libido levels. The blood flow to the genitals increase, this can increase vaginal sensitivity and wetness, resulting in more pleasure. But some women may not cope well with these changes. As the pregnancy progresses, bloating, nausea, fatigue and breast tenderness can reduce sex drive as well, making it almost impossible for a woman to enjoy sex.
These changes invariable affect libido levels. Enjoyment and pleasure drives vary between individuals and some days may be better than others. The bottom line is to adequately inform your partner about how you feel, and ask for his support in this trying time.
Which are the best sexual positions while I am pregnant?
Being comfortable is paramount. Try out different positions till you find those that are comfortable and pleasurable for you without causing any pain or discomfort. In you first trimester, when your belly is not that big, it will be easier to find comfortable positions. Missionary position (man on top) in the first trimester is doable but place a pillow under your back and let your partner support his weight, not rest on your abdomen.
As your belly grows, avoid lying on the flat of your back as this causes the weight of your baby to press down on major arteries, resulting in dizziness, breathlessness and fainting. For this reason, the most suitable positions include: side by side (man behind, both persons lying on their sides), doggy position (woman on knees, man behind) and woman on top straddling the man. These positions allow the growing belly to rest on the bed or on the man.
Will my pregnancy affect my partner’s sex drive?
Pregnancy glow makes a woman more attractive to her partner. Usually, most men will not have a problem making love to their wives. However, a man might be apprehensive that sex may harm the baby. To allay his fears, you could reassure him and take him for your antenatal care so he hears, directly from the doctor/nurse, that sex is okay at this time.
Pregnancy is a natural condition and should not prevent you from doing what you previously enjoyed. Sex releases oxytocin, a hormone that promotes bonding and love.