Sexual Intercourse after Delivery

When can we start having sex again?iStock_000006807414XSmall_thumb

Sexual intercourse can be resumed once the lochia discharge ceases

Will it hurt?

Unfortunately it can be somewhat uncomfortable initially particularly after a vaginal delivery.

After a vaginal delivery there has often been damage to the lower vaginal and perineal tissues. Whether a vaginal delivery or Caesarean section sex can initially be more uncomfortable because of hormonal changes with the onset of lactation which means that the vagina is more dry and lacks lubrication. Also a woman’s libido is usually not strong because she is more focused on the baby and developing her mothercraft skills.

What can be done?

Advise me of the problem and I will check to make sure that the vaginal and perineal areas have healed well. Occasionally there is a small amount of granulation tissue or excessive scar tissue which can be easily dealt with and so the problem can be corrected.

A vaginal lubricant such as Replens or KY jelly may help.

Be patient! If initially uncomfortable, with repeated sexual intercourse over time you will tend to relax more, focus more and enjoyment of sexual intercourse and libido will gradually increase. The problem therefore tends to be self limiting and usually resolves within the first months after childbirth.

Contraception

Make sure you have worked out contraception, if relevant.

See section on contraception. You can conceive while breast feeding and before your first period!

Posted by Dr Gary Sykes on -

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