5 min read

Sex During Pregnancy: Everything You Wanted to Know

Man's hands resting on a pregnant woman's belly, her hands over his

Congratulations on your pregnancy! As you are preparing for the arrival of your little one, you'll experience a mix of excitement, anticipation, and physical and mental changes (hello, sleepiness, or sleeplessness) that come with it. During this 9-month-long journey, sex during pregnancy will be one of the hot topics with questions if (yes!), howwhen, or is it safe for you and the baby? Let's start with this: pregnancy sex is completely normal and an aspect that will not only satisfy your needs and make you feel better but also strengthen the bond you have with your partner. Let's discover the intimate aspect of pregnancy and answer some commonly asked questions.  

Can You Have Sex While Pregnant?

Absolutely! In most cases, sex during pregnancy is not only safe but also normal and healthy. The body goes through several changes, but in general, as long as there are no complications and your healthcare provider advises no specific restrictions, sexual activity is considered safe throughout the entire pregnancy. The need and the decision whether to have sex during pregnancy is up to you and your body. Hormonal changes, increased blood flow to the pelvis, changes in breast and nipple sensitivity, fatigue, and nausea that can appear in the first trimester, as well as the perception of the changes in your body can all affect your sex drive. 


Some women may experience a decrease in their libido, while others may feel an increased desire for intimacy. Both scenarios are perfectly normal. During this time, it is important to communicate honestly and openly with your partner to ensure both of you are comfortable with the changes happening in your life (sex life included).  

Is Sex During Pregnancy Safe?

Generally, sex during pregnancy is completely safe, but it's recommended to consult with your healthcare provider if you have any specific concerns. In most cases, if your pregnancy is progressing without any complications, there's no reason for you not to enjoy sexual activity.  


You and your partner don't have to worry about upsetting or "poking" the baby during the sex, as the cervix is blocked until labor starts and keeps your partner's penis, fingers, or a sex toy away from your uterus, the sperm can't penetrate the amniotic sac, and the uterus is designed to protect the fetus. And if you feel awkward asking your healthcare provider about specific positions, just remember that they heard it all – from cravings weirder than pickles and ice cream to questions about the frequency of a particular baby name. So, when it comes to asking about sex during pregnancy, for your OB/GYN, that's just another day in the office.  

Changes Over Trimesters: What to Expect?

Many women have less sexual drive during the first trimester, as the hormonal fluctuations cause early pregnancy symptoms like fatigue and morning sickness, and then there's the period of adjusting to the beginning changes in your body. That's completely normal. On the other side, it's common for some women to continue to have sex and even have a higher libido during this time. That's also perfectly normal. 


The period of the second and third trimesters is when the hormonal changes begin to level out, and during this period, many women report a return and stabilization of their sex drive. In fact, due to the rise in testosterone levels, a tremendous increase in blood supply to the vaginal area, and higher sensitivity in lower regions, your libido might go through the roof. For this reason, the second trimester is referred to by some as the 'Honeymoon Period of Pregnancy.'   A graph showing the rise and fall of hormones hCG, progesteron, and estradiol during the 40 weeks of pregnancy

Will My Partner Want to Have Sex While I'm Pregnant?

While pregnancy is undoubtedly a journey of changes for women, it also impacts their partners, who go through a range of emotions and adjustments during this process. Regarding sex, some people get intimidated once the bump starts showing so as not to "hurt the baby," while others find the changing woman's body intensely sensual. In any case, it's important for both partners to talk about pregnancy sex, its benefits, and how to avoid potential risks at the beginning before your body starts to change. And don't forget to embrace and enjoy your body in all its beautiful pregnancy glow.  

Pregnancy Sex Positions

As the pregnancy progresses, finding comfortable positions to sit and sleep, let alone for having sex, becomes... challenging. You can experiment with different positions until you discover what works best for you and your partner, and as long as it feels comfortable, go for it. Many women find that side-lying positions or those that reduce pressure on the abdomen are much more comfortable. Here is the list of some positions you can try out:   

Sex from behind: popularly known as doggy style, involves you being on your hands and knees, resting your belly on the mattress or your thighs. You can also experiment with different pillows for support (pregnancy pillows can help). 

You on top: also known as cowgirl position, is when the partner is lying on the back, and you sitting on top. This position is great for those who fear laying on their belly because there is no weight or pressure on it. Additionally, you are "in control" of the speed and can quickly adjust if something feels off. 

Side-by-side: the beloved spooning position with you and your partner lying side by side, facing in the same direction. It's a very intimate position, on top of being comfortable for your belly. 

Adjusted missionary: you can still lay on your back, and your partner can still be on top, but instead of laying on top of you and thus pressuring your belly, you should lay on the edge of the bed while your partner is standing the whole time. 

Chair sex: We didn't say that pregnant sex needs to happen in bed. It may be fun to switch the location. This position puts you on top, which also will have no pressure or weight on the belly. To get into your position, your partner has to sit on the chair, and you simply sit on top of them face-to-face for more intimacy, or face away once your belly gets bigger.  


One thing you should pay attention to is not blowing any air down there - for that reason, oral sex may not be the best option because of the small chance that air could be forced into you and thus lead to dangerous blood vessel blockage.   

Can an Orgasm Induce Labor?

While oxytocin, the hormone released during orgasm (yep, that's the one associated with sexual arousal and building relationships), is a natural form of pitocin (the synthetic hormone you receive in a drip if you have an induced labor), there is no scientific evidence that an orgasm can induce labor. However, some couples do hope for it to happen in the last days of pregnancy.  

Masturbating While Pregnant

Masturbation during pregnancy is entirely normal - no worries if it's safe. It can be a wonderful way for you to explore your body and maintain a sense of connection with your sexuality. Also important to mention is that sex doesn't require penetration for maximum pleasure, so you or your partner can focus on stimulating the clit with toys or fingers.   


Embracing sexual intimacy during pregnancy varies from person to person. Open communication, understanding, and respecting each other's preferences is key. Sex during pregnancy can be a wonderful experience, and even though your body is changing, this can be a reason for you and your partner to consider each other's needs and straighten your intimacy. Remember that there's no right or wrong way to navigate sex during pregnancy – it's all about what feels comfortable and right for you and your partner.

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