Congratulations on giving birth to your baby! So, when can you start having sex again, and what should you do to prepare? Here are some general guidelines to follow for postpartum sex. Remember to check with your doctor or midwife about birth control first.
If you had a normal birth...
Most new mothers are advised to hold off on intercourse until six weeks after delivery, which is when they have their postpartum checkup. You'll want to make sure that you've had a chance to heal, and that the lochia (discharge of leftover blood and uterine tissue) has stopped. Pay attention to your body -- the time your body takes to recover is largely individual. Your partner should wear a condom, and you might need to use a personal lubricant.
If you had an episiotomy, c-section, or other procedure...
If you had an episiotomy or other laceration, the time it takes to heal will depend on how extensive it was and where the cutting was done. Even at six weeks, women who have had this procedure will probably still have discomfort if they attempt intercourse. Fortunately, there are ways to alleviate some of that discomfort. In some cases, an over-the-counter, water-based vaginal lubricant can help.
Other factors affecting readiness
Your hormones won't return to normal until after you've begun menstruating again. That may not be for four to 12 weeks after delivery. If you're breastfeeding, it might take considerably longer.
Also, caring for a newborn day and night may leave you too fatigued to want sex. You might feel "touched out" after cuddling a newborn much of the day. Talk to your partner about your feelings.