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Is It OK to Have Sex During Pregnancy?

Get answers to this question and more from Erika Schwartz, MD.

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-Hi. I'm Dr. Erika Schwartz. And you're watching Parents TV. Sex is an important topic for all couples. But during pregnancy, it gets a little trickier. But don't worry. Today, we're going to talk about all the questions you have, but were afraid to ask. So, let's start with the basics. Is it okay to have sex during pregnancy? You bet at this. Now, sex actually changes a little bit during the three trimesters of pregnancy. The three trimesters actually involve periods of time during which the baby inside of you starts growing and gets to the size and the shape that is ready to be delivered after about 36 to 40 weeks, and how your body starts changing. As your body starts changing, the hormone balance changes, your relationship change, and the way you feel about yourself changes. But now, let's get to some of your questions. Because starting with Alex and Christina who have questions about sex and how it will affect their baby, we're going to find out what you wanted to know. -Our question is, if we have sex during her pregnancy, will it hurt the baby? -No. Why would you think that having sex during pregnancy is going to hurt the baby? Being pregnant is not a disease, it's healthy. And enjoying sex when you don't have to worry about being pregnant is even more reason to have sex enjoyed. Next, we have a question about positions. -My name is Lauren. I have a question. As far as positions go, can being on the bottom crush the baby? -Actually, having you at the bottom is not going to crush the baby. There's a lot of amniotic fluid, fluid that feeds the baby, that the baby sits in during pregnancy that insulates and protects the baby from you and him. So, you have nothing to worry about. But as we get more and more pregnant, it's more difficult to have them on top. So, that's a great opportunity to start having different positions. Experimenting with positions that you were nearly wouldn't do. So, forget about the regular position and move on to fancy new ones. The next question is from Jennifer. -I crave sex during pregnancy. Is that normal? -Absolutely. Craving sex during pregnancy is perfectly normal. As a matter of fact, just think about it-- all those hormones that you didn't have before, now you have. And it's a perfect opportunity to improve your relationship with your partner, and you know what? I bet you. He will be really happy that you want to have sex with him. So, have a lot of sex. While I'm saying this, keep in mind that if you're not interested in sex and all of a sudden you're losing your sex drive, that's okay, too. It's an individual thing. Pregnancy is an individual thing. Okay. Let's move on to the next question. -My name is Jenny, and my question is, when I get pregnant, will I still need to use protection when I have sex? -Well, Jenny, it actually depends who you're having sex with. If you're having sex with your partner, your husband, the father of your child, or the man that you actually trust, sexual intercourse at this point during pregnancy is safe because you don't have to worry about being pregnant. But it's not safe if you're concerned about sexually transmitted diseases. There is no reason to really think that while you're pregnant, sexually transmitted diseases cannot occur. And you don't want to just protect yourself, you want to protect your baby. So, if it's a new man, a new relationship, make sure you use condoms. Mary and Mike wondered about high-risk pregnancies. -We had a high-risk pregnancy. Was it safe for us to have intercourse? -Well actually, probably, you know the answer already if you had it in the past and you have a safe, happy, healthy baby, you probably already know. The answer is, it's safe. But you need to talk to your doctor and keep in mind that the doctor is there to protect you, so they may be overly alarmist. You need to understand what the reason for the high-risk pregnancy is, and how to best protect you and the baby. But most likely, sex is okay unless you have ruptured membranes-- which case you're not gonna be really interested in having sex-- or you have the placenta is lined too low down, and in which case, you'll still going to have sex, but you don't have to have very vigorous sex. So, enjoy. We also had a question about sex after you give birth. -Hi. my name is Lena, and my question is, is there a difference between women that have had vaginal births or C-sections when they wanna have sex again? -Of course, there is a difference. You had a surgery when you had a C-section. So, it takes 6 to 12 weeks, actually, after surgery-- any kind of surgery, especially a C-section-- for you to have healed the area of the surgery and feel a little better. By the same token, if you had a vaginal delivery, your vagina is not gonna feel the same way as before. Sometimes, the first time you have sex, which is when you feel like having sex, then, you're going to feel very different. Your husband may feel that your vagina is looser, but to you, it may feel like the first time you had sex. So, the idea is to have a great relationship with your partner, and to work together to create an environment that gives you desire to have sex, and desire to be close to each other. For questions about particular condition, make sure you talk to your doctor. We'd like to hear your thoughts and questions about pregnancy and parenting issues. You can e-mail us at ideas@parents.tv. Thanks for watching Parents TV, your source for the best information on your growing family. -Thank you for watching Parents TV. Our families, our lives.