Sex During Pregnancy

Skip to the navigation

Topic Overview

If your pregnancy is progressing without problems, it's okay to have vaginal intercourse. Talk to your doctor if you have concerns or questions.

Sex during the first trimester will not cause any problems, such as a miscarriage. Sex won't harm the developing baby (fetus). The fetus floats in amniotic fluid that acts as a cushion.

Your interest in sex may change during your pregnancy. For example, you may have nausea and fatigue in the first trimester. And your enlarged uterus in the last trimester may cause discomfort. Any of these things can affect your sex drive.

Sex during the second or third trimesters will not usually cause any problems. Late in pregnancy, you may find sex most comfortable when you lie on your side. Also, orgasm close to your due date may start uterine contractions.

Your doctor will probably advise you to avoid sex if any of the following occur:

  • The placenta covers or partly covers your cervix (placenta previa).
  • Your "water" (amniotic sac) has broken.
  • Contractions start earlier than 37 weeks. This is called preterm labor.

If you have a sexually transmitted infection (STI) while you are pregnant, it can cause serious problems for you and the fetus. If you are or may be pregnant and are thinking about having sex with a new partner or a partner who may be infected with an STI, use condoms. They can help protect you and your baby.

Related Information

Credits

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Kirtly Jones, MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology

Current as ofOctober 2, 2015