Sex when you’re pregnant: embarrassing FAQs

How can you make sex with a bump work and is it safe?

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Some women find they feel sexier during pregnancy – it’s all those raging hormones! On the other hand, for many, sex is the last thing on their minds.

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However your find your love life developing, you will find that sex has changed now you’re pregnant. It’s natural to feel worried about how sex might affect your baby, or whether it’s putting you at any risk of pregnancy complications. Here, we put your mind at rest…

Q. Will love-making squash the baby in any way?
No. Your baby is fully cushioned in the amniotic sac, so won’t feel a thing. Relax and enjoy!

Q. Can having sex cause miscarriage?
Unless you have experienced bleeding or have a history of miscarriage, it’s perfectly safe to have sex when pregnant.

Q. Can my partner’s penis touch or hurt the baby in any way?
It’s anatomically impossible for your partner’s penis to make contact with the baby in the womb. Your cervix acts as a barrier between your baby and your man, so you don’t need to worry.

Q. Can my baby be exposed to any infection through sex?
The mucus plug that seals off the cervix prevents bacteria getting through, meaning your baby is not at risk from infection. However, blood-borne infections such as HIV can be transmitted through your blood to the baby. If you have any concerns about blood-borne infections, speak to your GP as soon as possible.

Q. Can I engage in oral sex?
Oral sex is perfectly safe as long as your partner doesn’t blow into your vagina. If he was to blow with some force there is a (very rare) chance that an air bubble could form in your circulatory system, leading to a potentially fatal embolism. You should not use Jacuzzis during your pregnancy and postnatal period for the same reason.

Q. Will having an orgasm trigger labour?
You may experience mild contractions during orgasm, but they will not be strong enough to bring on labour, unless you are ready to give birth anyway. In fact, sex is a recommended way to bring on labour if you go past your due date!

Q. Does the baby know what’s going on?
Well, you know that your baby can hear your voice from quite early on in the pregnancy, so if you happen to be whooping loudly… In all seriousness, you needn’t worry that your baby is going to be affected physically or emotionally by your love-making.

Q. Should I avoid sex if my placenta is low (placenta praevia)?
It is advisable to avoid sexual penetration and orgasm if you have a low placenta, as movement of the cervix may make the placenta dislodge and cause bleeding. You will be told at your 20-week scan if you have a low placenta and if you should avoid sex.

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Adapted from My Pregnancy 2012 (£14.99, White Ladder Press). Available at crimsonbooks.co.uk.

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