Sex After Baby: How Long Should We Wait?

Right off the bat, we’re going to come out and say it: there is no right or wrong answer here. But if you’re wondering when it’s recommended to start having sex again after giving birth, let’s get into it.

 

There’s No Right Time

Having sex after your pregnancy for the first time can feel daunting, but it doesn’t have to be.  Here’s some tips on how to approach it.  You might need some extra time to get to know one another again. That being said, some couples are keen to get going immediately, “Let’s just say that when my first babe was just 3 months we conceived our second,” says mom of 3, Cindy Alfino. She felt good and as a couple, they were ready (they were also lucky that nothing — except a surprise pregnancy! — went wrong.)

 

Doctor Says 6 Weeks

In the case of a normal, routine pregnancy and birth — no matter the type of birth — most women will be told to hold off from having sex until after their first check-up at 6 weeks after giving birth. There are good, solid, medical reasons for this. During birth, the cervix softens and opens. There’s usually bleeding for at least several months, as the uterine lining is shed. Sometimes there’s tearing or an episiotomy, not to mention how tired most women are in the days and weeks following birth. Having sex too early can result in postpartum bleeding and even uterine infections. So it’s generally better to steer clear until you get the go-ahead from your doctor!

 

Some Other Barriers

So, you know when they say that things are different after having a baby? Well, they weren’t just talking about your sleep levels. There are quite a few things women experience in the weeks and months following birth. Let’s take a look:

  • Lower oestrogen causing vaginal dryness.
  • Breastfeeding reducing sex drive.
  • Perineal tearing, episiotomy or a Caesarean section can cause pain for months after birth.
  • Exhaustion from night time wake-ups and feeding can reduce sex drive.

 

How to Make Sex Enjoyable Again

Look, sometimes you might be keen but your body says otherwise, and that’s OK. Try these tips:

  • There are many issues with vaginal dryness after pregnancy. Even if you’ve never used one before, give it a go now! It might make all the difference. And remember to use water-based lube if you’re using latex barrier contraceptives.
  • Try different positions if you’re experiencing pain or discomfort.
  • Communicate with each other. There can be lots of reasons why you might or might not feel like having sex. Also, don’t assume that your partner is raring to go unless you’ve talked about it. Both parents can feel overwhelmed and exhausted, so make sure you keep talking as time passes.

If there’s one thing you remember from this post, it’s that there’s no right or wrong time. If you’re not in the mood, you don’t owe it to anyone to have sex. Sex needs to be wanted by both parties so feel free to wait until you’re good and ready. Who knows, the anticipation may be the added spice you needed!

 

Sources:

  1. When can I have sex after being pregnant?: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/308480.php
  2. 6 things you need to know about having sex after birth: https://www.livingandloving.co.za/birth/6-things-need-know-sex-birth
  3. Is There a Right Time for Sex After Childbirth?: https://www.webmd.com/sex-relationships/news/20190214/is-there-a-right-time-for-sex-after-childbirth#1

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