Expecting father kissing pregnant belly
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Sex when you’re pregnant

What’s it like having sex when you’re pregnant? Fifty women share their experiences of intercourse during pregnancy and after giving birth.

A good sex life is an important part of a healthy life – it can affect a woman’s self-esteem, well-being, and relationship. This is true whether she’s pregnant or not.

But despite the fact that sex and pregnancy are as natural as can be, put the two together, and it’s not unusual for couples to have questions and concerns. And it can be a pretty difficult topic to bring up with a doctor.

These are some of the reasons that Indian gynaecologist and obstetrician Dr Padmini Prasad decided to talk to women about their sex lives during pregnancy. She interviewed 50 women between the ages of 19 and 39, who were at different stages of their pregnancies.

Sexual differences

Thirty of the women were into intercourse during their pregnancies, though only two were getting it on right up until they delivered their baby, Dr Prasad learned. But others found they were only up for hugging and kissing their partners, and 15 women didn’t have any sex at all.

Everyone is different, and the physical and hormonal changes taking place in a woman’s body mean that some will be in the mood for sex, while others simply won’t. There are all sorts of other ways to get intimate, including cuddling, kissing, oral sex, and masturbation.

Sexual desire

Some women may feel more sensation and pleasure due to increased blood flow to their genitals during pregnancy. But for others, it could be just plain uncomfortable, Dr Prasad explained. A woman’s breasts might also be more tender and sensitive than usual.

When it came to sexual desire, a low sex drive was an issue for 18 women, and 20 had problems reaching orgasm when they were pregnant. And just over 20 of the women said their partners had problems during sex, including trouble getting or keeping an erection, premature ejaculation, and lower libido.

For women who do have an orgasm, they might feel their uterus get hard and tighten afterwards. This can be uncomfortable, but it’s nothing to worry about – it’s just the ‘Braxton Hicks contractions’ which are a normal part of pregnancy. And all the action can get the baby excited. After sex it’s also common to feel the baby moving around and kicking afterwards – again this is perfectly okay.

Sexual positions

It’s normal for desire and arousal to vary during the three trimesters of a pregnancy, and sexual activity was definitely the lowest during the first trimester, when many of the women said they felt nauseous and tired, and just didn’t have much desire for sex.

During the second trimester, the women were in the mood for love once more, but then they had quite a bit less sex from the eighth month onward, because of tiredness, weakness, and the size of their bellies, they said.

Speaking of bellies, what sexual positions did these women and their partners find comfortable? Sitting up was most common, though the women also had intercourse on their sides, either spooning or with their partner in front of them, or in the missionary position.

Satisfaction

Most women can have intercourse while they’re pregnant, as long as it’s not a high-risk pregnancy, and there are no complications, Dr Prasad said. And women don’t have to worry about harming their baby: the amniotic fluid and strong muscles of the uterus easily protect the baby during intercourse.

After giving birth, four of the women felt up for sex within a month. But it took longer for others – up to six months, or more. A woman’s body needs time to recover and it’s a good idea to ask your doctor to make sure it’s okay to have intercourse again.

Being positive and happy about their pregnancy, and feeling attractive, can have an important effect on a woman’s sex life, said Dr Prasad. And the secret to sexual satisfaction during pregnancy? ‘Communication, openness, and a little experimentation’.
 

Questions or about having sex when you’re pregnant? Check out our discussion forum or Facebook.

Source: Poster and Abstract: Sex and Pregnancy (An Observational Study), Padmini Prasad; presented at the Congress of the World Association for Sexual Health 2015.

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Recent Comments (136)

  1. Thx for da advises we really
    Thx for da advises we really apriciate,but am asking is it dangerous 4 me to force my self so dat da sperms can get out of mi vigina coz i have done for almost 2 yrs and i didnt get pregnant wiz da method i use.

    1. Hi Carol, how do you force
      Hi Carol, how do you force them to come out? Sperms come out by themselves no need to be forced.

  2. Now we naija dey see all
    Now we naija dey see all nosent

  3. i agree with u doctor i hve
    i agree with u doctor i hve tried xo with my wfe n she was able to enjoy it upto the seventh month of hr pregnancy

    1. Thanks for sharing your
      Thanks for sharing your experience with us Prop.

  4. i also beliv dat women enjoy
    i also beliv dat women enjoy sex much beta wen dey a pregnant

    1. good. thanks for your input.

      good. thanks for your input.

  5. sometimes we believe tat
    sometimes we believe tat having sex during pregnancy is making te baby dirty

    1. That is just a myth Milly.
      That is just a myth Milly. One cannot make the child dirty because of sex.

  6. That’s true sex is sweet when
    That’s true sex is sweet when you do it with pregnancy women

    1. Thanks for your input Joseph.
      Thanks for your input Joseph.

  7. Is it healthy to have sex
    Is it healthy to have sex during the 8th month when your almost to conceive

    1. Hi Shiruw, that is normal.
      Hi Shiruw, that is normal. There is no harm in having sex during pregnancy.

  8. I love the topic and please
    I love the topic and please how can you prevent being pregnant while breast feeding thou i dont own a baby

    1. Hi Mercy, exclusive breast
      Hi Mercy, exclusive breast feeding is a natural method of contraception. But its not as effective as the other contraceptive methods and that is why people are encouraged to use regular contraceptive to reduce chances of unintended pregnancy.

  9. After how long when your
    After how long when your pregnant should you stop having sex

  10. how does mustubetion has any
    how does mustubetion has any effect

  11. am three months pregnant bt i
    am three months pregnant bt i hv no feelings in having sex with my husband bt he does nt know abt it. so what can i do to love sex?

    1. HI Irene its normal for
      HI Irene its normal for pregnant women sometimes not to have sexual urges. There is nothing wrong. You should just talk to your partner and he can help you get in the mood.

  12. what are the effects of
    what are the effects of musturbation

  13. Is it a must for someone to
    Is it a must for someone to reach orgasm in order to get pregnant. .(woman)..

    1. For a woman chances of
      For a woman chances of getting pregnant to be high a man needs to ejaculate inside her, but a woman dos not need to orgasm to become pregnant.

  14. I wil tri it, if i’m married
    I wil tri it, if i’m married tanx 4 dat doc.

    1. Thanks for sharing Dani.
      Thanks for sharing Dani.

  15. Thenx doc I a gree with that,
    Thenx doc I a gree with that, having sex with a pregnant woman is good health of the Bby.

    1. It is good that you agree
      It is good that you agree with us Sonia, thanks for that.

  16. Am trying to get pregnant but
    Am trying to get pregnant but can’t calculate my ovulation period I need help

  17. I have sister her husband
    I have sister her husband died she has spend three years without having sex is it dangerous
    or

    1. Hi Mackie, there is nothing
      Hi Mackie, there is nothing wrong with lack of sex. It has no health implications.

  18. Its educating, is it advice
    Its educating, is it advice to masturbate wit ur partner than to do it alone?

    1. Hi Mastermind, that’s up to
      Hi Mastermind, that’s up to an individual whether they want to masturbate alone or with their partner.

  19. How long does one take to
    How long does one take to start ovulating after birth

    1. Hi claire, it depends with
      Hi claire, it depends with individual but for most it can start as early as 6 weeks after birth.

  20. uko xawa lakin wait uxae
    uko xawa lakin wait uxae kwanxa

  21. Y Is It That Pregnant Women R
    Y Is It That Pregnant Women R Very Sweet

    1. Hi Filex no research has been
      Hi Filex no research has been done to ascertain that yet.

  22. Iam 9 months pregnant from
    Iam 9 months pregnant from first day till now my husband must fuck me

    1. Good, thanks for sharing.
      Good, thanks for sharing.

  23. Absolutely true. Av tried it
    Absolutely true. Av tried it n it is very much enjoyable n permits full satisfaction of the couple

    1. Thanks for sharing our
      Thanks for sharing our experience with us.

  24. i experience premature
    i experience premature ejaculation dis days and sometimes i become soft wen am still inside before ejaculation, can it be because of pregnancy?? coz am worried i may loose my family

    1. Hi Simon,

      Hi Simon,

      It sounds like you are coming earlier than you would like, this often happens to young men who don’t have a lot of sexual experience because they get very aroused very easily. With more sexually experienced men, it might be due to psychological problems, like fear, stress or depression.
      Generally though go slow, enjoy the buildup of touching and caressing each other. Make time for oral sex during your physical interactions. Take time focusing on your partner as well as yourself. Communicate together about what feels nice, what doesn’t and what you would like to try together. Experiment, explore and try new things!
      Make sure to use lots of lube and switch up the fun. Even if you do orgasm you can take some time to have oral sex with your partner until your body is ready to go again. Change positions and mix it up.
      Some people say condoms help them last longer, while others may use cock rings (just make sure it is the right size and not too tight!).
      Generally just remember that sex is more than just penetration and there are lots of ways to enjoy each other.
      If you are finding that you really cannot maintain an erection then it might be time to see a doctor. There are some medical conditions that can affect your performance but would need to be looked by a professional.
      You can also keep masturbating, however challenge yourself to last longer. Go slow, feel the way your body changes when you are getting closer to climax. Tease yourself, find tricks that help you delay the finish.

  25. Its true,,sex is sweet when a
    Its true,,sex is sweet when a woman is pregnant

    1. We are glad you agree.
      We are glad you agree.

  26. Big up xana lav matters for
    Big up xana lav matters for mi I enjoyed sex with na hubby while pregnant

    1. Thanks for sharing that with
      Thanks for sharing that with us Racheal.

  27. Big up xana lav matters en
    Big up xana lav matters en thanks for 4 ua advice’s,I enjoyed sex during pregnancy till 1st week of the last month to conceive en its was enjoyable for mi en ma hubby

    1. Good to hear that Racheal and
      Good to hear that Racheal and thanks for sharing with us.

  28. Enjoyable and educative.
    Enjoyable and educative. please we need articles on how to hookup. I am still single but lacks the courage of approaching a lady. I am 28 and am getting old and am very worried. I have never even have sex, will it affect me in my marriage? I need counseling.

  29. She came to the PPD
    She came to the PPD complaining of not conceiving despite continued sex with her husband, she is 25,she experience her period normally, she really need a child, no any stis,what is the problem witj her??

  30. Hey doctor me I gave birth
    Hey doctor me I gave birth wen I was 17 bt after I got my periods right away now am 18 bt I now take like 4months without having my periods so is t normal

  31. Is it advisable to a woman
    Is it advisable to a woman getting pragnant at the of 47 stil normal monthly period

    1. Hi Che, as long as she is
      Hi Che, as long as she is healthy and still productive there is no problem.

  32. docter is it allowed to have
    docter is it allowed to have sex up to the last day to give brth

    1. There is nothing wrong with
      There is nothing wrong with it. Read the article above to find out more.

  33. Is it normal when a pregnant
    Is it normal when a pregnant woman has sexual urge for another man (not her husband )…?

    1. Anybody can have sexual urges
      Anybody can have sexual urges for another person whether pregnant or not. The important thing is what you do with the urge. o you act on it or do you ignore it.

    2. I think mike we can call it
      I think mike we can call it desire but most pregnant women are attracted to people who are not their husband!! This attraction dies after delivery though i am also asking why??

  34. A pregnancy of 2 wks can be
    A pregnancy of 2 wks can be detected?

    1. Yes it can. You simply need
      Yes it can. You simply need to take a pregnancy test.

  35. Hi,am in love with a man who
    Hi,am in love with a man who we av dated for five months and then past five he started asking me about my past and my answers did nt satisfy him…could it be possible he don’t love me anymore

    1. Hi Davin,

      Hi Davin,

      What makes you feel as though he does not love you any more?

  36. It’s True Everyone Has His Or
    It’s True Everyone Has His Or Her Own Feelings, If U Experience Them During Pregnancy Then Satsfy Ur Disers

    1. Thanks for the input Alice.
      Thanks for the input Alice.

  37. Dr does apregnant supposed to
    Dr does apregnant supposed to an amount of sex like t z not supposed to be much

  38. Am pregnant two months n i
    Am pregnant two months n i realy feel thet urge of having sex but when i approach my husband its like he dont want to ,he has become somehow selfish in bed whats the problem??

    1. Hi,

      Hi,

      Have you tried to talk to him about it and find out why he does not want to have sex? If not you should have a conversation about it.

  39. I normally have sex with my
    I normally have sex with my partner while lying on my back, is there any problem or danger, am 17 weeks

    1. Hi Pat, as long as you are
      Hi Pat, as long as you are comfortable with it there is nothing wrong about it.

  40. Am pregnant in my second
    Am pregnant in my second trimester. I do have sex with my husband but don’t enjoy it I just do it for his sake. I all the same enjoy musturbating .

    1. Hi Tina its normal sometimes
      Hi Tina its normal sometimes to be turned off by sex when you are pregnant, but if you are enjoying masturbation more than you partner you should talk to him about it and hopefully come up with a way you can also enjoy sex, even if it means showing him what you enjoy.

  41. jt looks so good t make sex
    jt looks so good t make sex during pregnany, not only that but also it makes your partner to be happy

    1. Thanks for sharing that with
      Thanks for sharing that with us.

    1. Thanks for sharing that Anne.
      Thanks for sharing that Anne. Do you have a question for us? Feel free to ask.

  42. Am preg and enjoying sex with
    Am preg and enjoying sex with hubby,,

    1. Thanks for sharing that with
      Thanks for sharing that with us Shiro.

  43. hi i am three mnths pregnt an
    hi i am three mnths pregnt an i dnt enjoy sex could i be sick or is thr somethng wrong wth me

    1. Hi Joyce,

      Hi Joyce,

      What is it about sex that you have stopped enjoying? Do you feel there is something that has change? Have you talked to our partner about this?

  44. Hey doctor, I’m 3months
    Hey doctor, I’m 3months pregnant but whenever i make love with my hubby I feel a lot of pain in the lower abdomen.wat might b the problem??

    1. (No subject)
      Hi Joy,

      Have you tried a different sex position? You may also need to visit your doctor for a more advice.

    2. Here, sex in a healthy…
      Here, sex in a healthy person should not result into pain whatsoever. Your lower abdomen hurts only if some disease has rented some space therein.
      Ranging from Problems at the Cervix, Fliud filled sacs down there beneath the Cervix or tubes, or a tumour like Fibroids.
      See a Qualified Doctor….. And a Void Juniors or Quacks who will preach myths of sex to you.
      Thx

  45. Is it fine for pregnant…
    Is it fine for pregnant woman of 1to3months to have sex

    1. (No subject)
      Hi Markcarols,

      Yes it is ok for the woman to have sex. Sex will not interfere with the pregnancy in anyway. Review the article above.

      Love Matters Team

  46. Sex during pregnancy is sweet
    Sex during pregnancy is sweet

    1. (No subject)
      Thank you Lucy for your feedback.

      Love Matters Team

    1. (No subject)
      Hi Moni,

      Thank you for your feedback.

      Love Matters Team

  47. I tried that and I ended up…
    I tried that and I ended up in a miscarriage

    1. (No subject)
      Hey JJ,

      We are so sorry for your loss.

      Is it the sex that caused the miscarriage?
      It is important to get a position that you are comfortable and no pressure is applied to you belly. It is still possible to have satisfying and safe sex during pregnancy. Review the article above for more tips.

  48. When my husband enters into…
    When my husband enters into ma virgina ifeel tears everyday and more pain in my entrence.he says he feels good bt to me ifeel pain.what can b the problem?

  49. am 28 and hav not give birth
    am 28 and hav not give birth

    1. Hi Ireen,…
      Hi Ireen,

      Have you been trying to get pregnant?

  50. Hi Dr,I too have a question,…
    Hi Dr,I too have a question, I am three months pregnancy and I heard a strong abdominal pain during and after sex,what might be the problem?

    1. Hi Emily, It is normal to…
      Hi Emily, It is normal to have a discomfort when you pregnant but such pain may mean something else. Do get a check up from your medical provider.

  51. can you be pregnant if u…
    can you be pregnant if u twice birth control pills twice a month

  52. q.during sex wen preg with…
    q.during sex wen preg with my hubby i fell pain what can be problem

    1. Hi Mary, you didn’t say…

      Hi Mary, you didn’t say where you felt the pain, but if the pain was in your vagina, this could have been caused by a number of reasons. These reasons may include, the sex position during intercourse, an existing infection in the vagina,  or dry sex, where penetration happened before the vagina was well lubricated. Check out this article;- https://lovematters.co.ke/making-love/sex-problems-how-to-overcome-them/painful-sex-time-to-listen-up

  53. is it true that sexual…
    is it true that sexual intercourse is necessary for pregnant women?
    can sex in her last months cause a miscarriage?
    which months are safe to have sex with a pregnant woman?

    1. Hi Kule, Some women may feel…
      Hi Kule, Some women may feel more sensation and pleasure due to increased blood flow to their genitals during pregnancy which may lead to them wanting more sex than what maybe usual for them. For others however, sex maybe uncomfortable during this time. Sex is good for a woman whether she’s pregnant or not. It is generally safe to have sex during pregnancy, it is however, important to use sex positions that are comfortable for your partner and those that do not exert alot of pressure onto her stomach. Check out this article;- https://lovematters.co.ke/pregnancy/being-pregnant/sex-and-pregnancy

  54. will you have sex until the…
    will you have sex until the day of deliver

    1. Hi Davidson, 

      It depends…

      Hi Davidson, 

      It depends. Some women do others don’t. Most women can have intercourse while they’re pregnant, as long as it’s not a high-risk pregnancy, and there are no complications. As long as the woman is comfortable and the doctor has not advised against sex during pregnancy, it is totally okay. Remember to choose positions that are comfortable for the pregnant woman. Read this article to learn more: Top 5 Facts About Sex During Pregnancy

  55. Please doctor can I have sex…
    Please doctor can I have sex with my 1month pregnant wife?

    1. Hi John, 

      Yes, it is…

      Hi John, 

      Yes, it is totally safe to have sex with your one-month pregnant wife. Ensure that the sex position you chose is comfortable for her. However, if she is not comfortable, or if the doctor has advised that you avoid having sex, it is safe to avoid. 

  56. I love this topic,i do…
    I love this topic,i do experience with my love she enjoyed alot when she is pregnant

    1. Hi Erick,

      Great to hear!…

      Hi Erick,

      Great to hear! Thank you for sharing your experience!

  57. When a woman is pregnant…
    When a woman is pregnant which month is she suporsed to hear a baby moving around and kicking in his womb?

    1. Hi Johntez, 

      The baby…

      Hi Johntez, 

      The baby should start moving between 16 and 24 weeks of pregnancy. 

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