The ins and outs of intercourse and intimacy during pregnancy
Just like in your normal love life, sexual desire and intimacy can go every which way during pregnancy. There are more hormones flying around and increased blood flow into reproductive tissue, which could account for many women’s increased sex drive at certain stages in their pregnancy.
This is a time of not only heightened physical sensitivity, but emotional sensitivity as well. Listening to your body and doing what feels right for you can become its own source of pleasure. Whatever the origin of your desires, if you’re in the mood, it can be confusing, disappointing, and painful if you or your partner feels nervous about acting on your impulses. Just like you, your partner may be having a new process around his or her sexuality. Often, partners feel that they will be injuring the baby, hurting you, or doing something morally inappropriate if you have intercourse. This can impact intimacy.
Facts to help quell your concerns about sex during pregnancy
First, let’s talk about the actual anatomy going on here. Know that your baby is completely contained within the amniotic sac and will not be exposed to any of the sexual fluids. There is also a thick mucus plug that seals the cervix during pregnancy to guard against infection or anything else entering the uterus. Neither the penis nor the semen comes into contact with the baby during sex.
Read more: Why pregnancy sex is so important
If the baby is privy to anything, it’s probably the unconscious feeling of their parents loving and caring for each other. As a matter of fact, oxytocin is released during a woman’s orgasm, which is the same “bonding hormone” that helps facilitate not only bonding between partners, but also bonding with the baby after birth. It’s notable that oxytocin is also released during warm touch and prolonged gazing into each other’s eyes. So cuddling might satiate you if sex doesn’t appeal right now.
Rest assured that unless there is already a threat, sex does not cause miscarriages. Miscarriages are typically due to chromosomal abnormalities or unknown causes unrelated to sex. Oral sex is also safe during pregnancy, but your partner should refrain from blowing any air into your vagina. Although it’s very rare, this can cause an air embolism, which can be life threatening during pregnancy.
The primary concern about anal sex during pregnancy is the spread of infection to the vagina. So, be sure to be cognizant of hygiene if this is in your repertoire.
If you need extra inspiration, think about this: by virtue of the new mechanics of sex during pregnancy, you might even find yourself making up new positions with each other. This can be an exciting time to expand your sensuality in whatever way feels right for you.