In many ways, the first trimester of pregnancy is usually the worst. You may be nauseous and wildly hormonal, plus a little anxious about the stuff that could harm your precious little one, which includes having sex.
Anxiety about having sex during pregnancy is normal, but thankfully your baby is safer there than you think. Assuming you can huddle through the first trimester of morning sickness and exhaustion long enough, here’s what you can expect during the early days of pregnancy.
Can sex in the first twelve weeks cause miscarriage?
If this is your fear, then you’re not alone. In the case of a typical pregnancy, sex is safe all throughout the nine months of pregnancy, including the first trimester. Unless your doctor has told you not to have sex, there’s no reason you should avoid it. The muscles around the uterus as well as the amniotic fluid inside it helps protects the baby during sex.
There’s a higher chance of miscarriage in general during the first trimester as compared with other trimesters. About a half of miscarriages happen due to chromosomal abnormalities which may develop during fertilisation of the embryo whereas sex has nothing to do with it. Other factors of miscarriage include maternal infections and diseases, hormone issues, uterine abnormalities, use of certain medications, reproductive disorders like endometriosis and polycystic ovarian syndrome.
You might not feel like having sex during the initial days of pregnancy but you don’t need to avoid sex to limit your chance of miscarriage.
Is bleeding after sex normal in the first 12 weeks?
There may be a number of reasons you might experience light bleeding or spotting in the first trimester and most of it doesn’t have to do anything with physical sex. About 25 percent of pregnant women may experience bleeding in the first trimester and that info isn’t concerned with the sexual activity of those women. What spotting is a sign of can be implantation of the fertilized egg. If you are looking to get pregnant, this may be a good sign. It’s worth noting that plenty of pregnant women have no such implantation bleeding.
Heavier bleeding may be a sign of issues such as ectopic pregnancy or placenta previa. With that being said, your cervix is likely to go through some major changes.
Pregnancy hormones may make it drier than usual and can cause the blood vessels to rupture easily. Having sex during this period can cause irritation in the vagina resulting in light bleeding or spotting, which may look pink, brown or light red.
Signs where you need to call the doctor include bleeding that lasts longer than one or two days, coincides with fever, cramps and pains.
What if sex during the first 12 weeks is painful?
Sex may be painful throughout pregnancy and it isn’t restricted to the first trimester. It’s mostly due to the changes happening in your body. Unless you have an infection, some of the reasons why sex in the first trimester may hurt include vaginal dryness due to hormonal changes, sore nipples and the need to pee, adding pressure on your bladder.
When sex is painful that you’re avoiding it, it’s time to talk to a doctor.
Is there a reason to avoid sex during the first 12 weeks?
Sex during pregnancy can lead to contractions which are temporary in low risk pregnancies, but if you have any existing medical condition, it can lead to preterm labour. Be sure to check with your doctor about safe sex during pregnancy if you have any of the following conditions:
-History of miscarriage
Remember sex doesn’t cause miscarriage though extra precautions against uterine contractions may be required in case of high risk pregnancies
-Pregnant with more than one baby
If you’re pregnant with more than one baby, your doctor may put you on pelvic rest in an effort to help you as close to full term as possible. It means nothing should be inserted into the vagina which includes abstaining from sex. Pelvic rest is not the same as bed rest and it may or may not include restrictions on having orgasms, so you need to make sure what your doctor tells you.
An incompetent cervix
The cervix which has opened too early is known as an incompetent cervix. Ideally, the cervix begins to thin and soften right before you are going into labor, so you can deliver the baby. But if the cervix opens up too early, you are the risk of miscarriage and premature delivery.
Signs of preterm labor may start between the 20th and the 37th week of pregnancy. It’s unlikely that it would happen in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. In case you’re showing signs of labor before week 37 such as contractions, backache and vaginal discharge, your doctor may want to avoid activities that may advance labor.
Infection in the body
Some cases include certain vaginal infections like vaginitis, chorioamnionitis, and cervicitis. You may also have a pelvic inflammatory disease or a vaginal or pelvic mass. A vaginal yeast infection may also be shared, affecting people throughout their lifetime. Since pregnancy hormones can create an imbalance in vaginal yeast, diseases are prevalent.
It typically forms on top or side of the uterus; however, when it begins underneath, placing it directly over the cervix, it creates a condition known as placenta Persia. During this condition, you may bleed throughout pregnancy resulting in hemorrhage.
When do you need to tell a doctor?
Whether you need to see a doctor depends on how long you’ve had the symptoms and how severe they are. Mild bleeding, cramping and pain are typically normal, especially if they are resolved within one or two days after the intercourse. Heavy bleeding, cramping, severe pain and other signs of infection like fever should be reported to the doctor asap.
Sex during the first trimester isn’t always comfortable or pleasant, but unless you’re at risk for complications, it is considered safe. If you have a pregnancy related medical condition, don’t be afraid to ask your, doctor, what all sexual activities are allowed.