What You Need to Know About Period Sex
Having your period doesn’t mean shelving your sex life for a week. While there isn’t anything inherently problematic with period sex, it will come with a unique set of challenges. Naturally, you may be wondering about any risks from a medical perspective, and whether you should be engaging in it at all. If you’re new to period sex but ready and willing to give it a shot, a clean vagina and healthy habits are crucial.
Can You Have Sex While on Your Period?
According to medical professionals in the field of obstetrics and gynaecology, there is nothing harmful about having intercourse while menstruating. However, there are a few exceptions to the rule.
For instance, those with hepatitis, HIV, or an STI (sexually transmitted infection) should refrain from having sex while on their period due to the possibility of transmission. Many sexually-caused or related diseases are bloodborne—and yes, period blood is different from the type in your veins and arteries.
When on your period, your cervix opens widely, increasing the risk of infection. If you are unsure about your partner’s sexual health—or your own—it’s best to abstain from sexual contact or simply ask them to wear protection.
Can You Get Pregnant from Having Period Sex?
Contrary to popular belief, it’s entirely possible to get pregnant while having sex on your period—though it’s improbable. If you choose to engage in unprotected period sex, you are more at risk of contracting an STI.
The chances of pregnancy are significantly lower if you experience regular periods and are familiar with when you are ovulating. As a rule of thumb, always use protection—you might occasionally encounter a “period” that is, in reality, a breakthrough bleed during ovulation.
Are There Benefits to Period Sex?
The good news is, there are a few pluses that come with having sex while on your period. For instance, your period may become less painful. When you have an orgasm, the muscles in your uterus contract. This action relieves menstrual cramps, which occur as a result of your uterus shedding its lining. Simultaneously, an orgasm releases endorphins that can improve mood and discomfort.
Sex during menstruation can also do unexpected wonders for arousal. By day three of your cycle, estrogen and testosterone levels tend to rise, which can make for more stimulating and enjoyable sex. Plus, your flow serves as extra lubrication.
Though still mostly a theory, sex can occasionally make your period lighter, as it causes your uterus to contract and push out additional lining.
What are the Drawbacks to Period Sex?
Perhaps the most apparent con to menstrual sex is how messy it can get. Avoid having to wash a newly-prepared set of sheets by laying down a dark towel.
Some might also become bothered by the metallic smell, which you can easily mask with all-natural aromatherapy and regular use of an intimate care wash.
Finally, if you use a tampon, it might be soaking up all the natural lubrication your body is producing. If so, you can never go wrong with a water-based lube.
How to Have Good Period Sex
A little less cleanup after period sex is always a good thing. Thus, you’ll want to set the scene by laying down a dark towel and being ready to hop into the shower afterwards.
Always communicate with your partner. Remember, period sex isn’t limited to penetrative action. You can still engage in manual or oral sex if it puts you more at ease. Finally—have fun!
Though it may seem daunting at first, period sex can be just as rewarding as regular intercourse. Always practice proper hygiene and let your partner know what you are most comfortable with.
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