Essential information to rememberSexual relations can continue throughout pregnancy without any problem, as long as you respect each other’s needs, limits, and comfort zone.

Photo: Kathy Pouliot, studio Lollipop photo

Pregnancy can have an impact on a couple’s sex life. Sexual desire and the frequency of sexual relations may increase, decrease, or vary during pregnancy. The changes taking place in the woman’s body and the new perception of yourself and your partner as parents rather than lovers can create feelings that affect sexual desire.

Various factors, including a big belly, medical contraindications, discomfort, personal limits, a greater desire for simple tenderness, or a growing belly, may lead you to set aside certain sexual practices or try new ones.

Pleasure, whether physical or psychological, may be experienced differently by each partner during pregnancy. For example, you and your partner may not have the same ability to reach orgasm, the same degree of sensitivity, or the same feeling of closeness.

Information that gives comfort, confidenceYou may have some concerns about sexual activity while pregnant, but you can have sex without worry: neither vaginal penetration nor orgasm cause miscarriage and they will not lead to premature labour or hurt your baby. The baby is well protected inside the amniotic sac in the uterus.

In some situations, however, you may be advised not to have sexual intercourse; for example, if you have bleeding, abdominal pain, or problems with the placenta, or if there is concern about premature labour or a rupture of the amniotic membranes. Your prenatal care provider will tell you if this is the case and advise you about what precautions you should take.

During pregnancy, it is important to protect yourself against sexually transmitted infection (STIs). Use a condom if you have sexual relations where there is a risk of contracting an STI. This will prevent the infection from being transmitted and avoid the complications it can cause you and your baby.

Labour: Process by which the baby passes from the uterus to the outside world, primarily through contractions of the uterus.

Miscarriage: A spontaneous abortion, which can have a variety of causes (e.g., a deformity or disease).

Sexually transmitted infection (STI): Infection caused by a bacteria or virus transmitted through sexual contact.