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Sex after Childbirth FAQs

Learn about sex after childbirth from childbirth expert Elizabeth Mangum-Sarach in this Howcast video. Thumbnail: Minhas meninas by fabiogoveia

Transcript

Sex during and after childbirth. Yes, I did say during. A lot of people are surprised to know that sex during childbirth is actually okay. The important thing to know is that if your waters have broken, do not have sexual intercourse. If your water hasn't broken yet and you need to stimulate or bring labor on, you can have sexual intercourse. In semen, there are prostaglandins, which help to soften and dilate the cervix. So, sex during labor and birth can actually be really positive and productive. In terms of having sex after birth, you really want to be mindful that you should probably wait at least six weeks until you have your six week checkup with your obstetrician and/or your midwife.
So having sex during birth is clearly something that's not talked about very often and doesn't sound like it's a very common thing that a woman would want to do. Oftentimes my clients say to me, "Are you kidding? I would not want to have sex during birth." I'm not saying you have to have sex during birth. What I'm saying is that if you need to stimulate or bring on labor in a natural way, intercourse, masturbation, nipple stimulation and/or orgasm can be really great techniques for helping labor to progress in a natural way.
If you're at home, clearly this is the best place to have sex or masturbation or any kind of orgasm or experience that's going to help progress labor. Clearly, if you're at the hospital, this may be a bit more challenging. But you definitely have the right and the option of asking your nurse or anyone else on your medical team or even your family members to step out and give you and your partners some time alone.
It's important to wait six weeks after giving birth to have sex because you could put your body at risk for infection. Although you should wait six weeks before having sex after giving birth, the real risk is infection. And this can be achieved by inserting anything into the vagina, whether it's a penis, your fingers, a dildo or your vibrator.

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