Orgasm During Pregnancy: It's Fine
Woman's Era|November 2020
How It’s Different.
Deepshikha Pandey

It can feel like pregnancy changes everything. In some ways, it does. You’re skipping your favorite sushi place and reaching for well-done steak instead. The smallest odors seem to have you rushing to the toilet to throw up, and even sitcoms can leave you in an emotional puddle of tears. You’ve asked your OB everything under the sun, from whether you can have beef jerky to if your belly button will become an outie — and why.

But there’s one subject you’re wondering about that you’ve felt a little uncomfortable bringing up: the big O. So, is it OK to have an orgasm during pregnancy? (And if you’ve already had one, why did it feel really, really good — better than it ever has before?) The short answer is yes, in most cases, it’s absolutely fine to have an orgasm while pregnant — in fact, it can also be a great for your emotional and mental well-being.

Let’s take a closer look at orgasm safety, sensations in the first, second, and third trimesters, and a big myth about orgasms bringing on labor — debunked.

Is it ever not safe to have an orgasm during pregnancy?

When it comes to sex during pregnancy, there’s a lot that can cause hesitation: You may not feel “in the mood,” thanks to hormones and morning sickness; your partner may worry about “poking the baby” or otherwise hurting you; and you both may have concerns about orgasms and uterine contractions.

Always check with your doctor about whether you, specifically, are OK to have sex. But if your doctor hasn’t told you otherwise, and your pregnancy is low risk, it’s generally completely safe to get it on between the sheets.

In fact, when researchers looked at studies involving 1,483 pregnant women, they found that there were no significant differences between those who had sex during their pregnancy and those who didn’t when it came to inducing labor contractions.

Researchers also noted that in low-risk pregnancies, sex wasn’t associated with “preterm birth, premature rupture of membranes, or low birth weight.” However, if you have any of the following, your doctor may indeed tell you to abstain from sexual activity:

  • Spotting or bleeding

  • Incompetent cervix (when the cervix is shorter than about 22 millimeters and you’re at higher risk for preterm birth)

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