How Long You Really Have To Wait Before Having Sex Again After Giving Birth

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When Is It Okay To Have Sex After Giving Birth?
Love, Sex

This is a particular subject that both the woman and her husband often have concerns about.

You have given birth to your first child and you are now officially a mother. This is an exciting time in your life, as well as your partner's life. As you bring the new child into life and start to nurture them, however, several questions start to pop up in your mind.

While questions such as whether or not you are going to be a good mother and how well you and your new baby will connect are very common amongst all women, a particular subject that both the woman and her husband often have concerns about is when they can start having sex again.

In this article, we hope to shed some light on this topic and help you understand why it is better to wait a little, and when exactly it would be an appropriate time to get back to doing what you and your partner love doing in the bedroom.

How Long Should You Wait Before Having Sex After Giving Birth?

While we are going to look at some other aspects, apart from how long you should wait before being intimate with your husband after giving birth, we are going to jump right in and start out by telling you approximately how long you should wait.

Since there are many factors that need to be considered when it comes to answering this question, it is important to also discuss the possibility of getting back to sexual intercourse with your healthcare provider. We are, however, able to provide you with a general overview of when would be the most appropriate time.

According to Baby Center, the first six weeks following childbirth should always be a period of recovery and, during this recovery period, sexual intercourse should not be on the table.

At the six-week interval, a woman needs to see her doctor for a postpartum checkup. During this checkup, the doctor will examine the perineum and the woman's vagina to ensure there is nothing wrong with the healing process following the birth of her child. 

At this particular check-up, the woman should discuss sexual intercourse with her doctor. If all goes well and the doctor finds that there is nothing wrong with the perineum and the vagina, then he may advise that sexual intercourse would be appropriate at the time.

If a problem is noted, however, the doctor may advise the woman to wait another week or two and to return to him after this period — before proceeding with any sexual intercourse. 

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Many women who had a c-section to deliver their baby tend to think that returning to sexual intercourse is possible sooner than when birth was given naturally.

While it is true that the vagina does not need to heal as it needs to heal with natural birth, it is important to note that the woman's body went through many changes — even when a c-section was given— and time is needed for the body to start its healing process following childbirth.

Thus, it is important to wait for the postpartum checkup, even if a woman had a c-section. 

Potential Problems With Sex After Childbirth

After giving birth, there may be some problems with sexual intercourse for the first few weeks once a woman is ready to get back to her intimate activities with her husband.

Glamour reports that it is quite common for a woman's vagina to be rather dry during this period of time. This is especially the case with women who are breastfeeding their new child. Thus, sexual intercourse may be uncomfortable if a lubricant is not used during sex.

They also report that sex may not feel the same as it did prior to pregnancy for the first few weeks once the woman participates in sexual intercourse with her partner after she had given birth. This is also natural and normal, and she should give her vagina time to heal properly before expecting too much. 

Another problem that may become present when a woman only starts to participate in sexual intercourse after childbirth is painful sensations during sex. This can be caused by perineal tears. An episiotomy can also cause pain during sex if the cut has not been healed properly yet. The more extensive the tears or cut in the vaginal area, the more painful sex could be at first.

RELATED: 8 Women Reveal What Having Sex After Baby REALLY Feels Like

Mayo Clinic advises women to take it slow and to start out with some kissing and cuddling. Then to build up the mood gradually. 

Using a water-based lubricant is also an excellent way to combat soreness from tears in the vaginal region, or from an episiotomy. Furthermore, it is important for the woman to let her partner know about her pain. This way, he would be more considerate during sex.

While having sex, the woman should stay in control of what is happening. She should also stay in control of the penetration since only she can feel when pain becomes present.

When sex becomes painful, she can choose to add more lubricant, which may help to alleviate some of the pain and help her feel more satisfaction. Some women also find that experimenting with various sex positions helps them find one that is not as painful. 

Having a baby is a truly magical experience, but women tend to have quite a lot of concerns after they have given birth. When they can have sex again is a particular question that women tend to ask over-and-over since they would like to get back to sharing intimate moments with their partner after the childbirth.

Getting back to sex too soon can be problematic, but waiting too long could be troublesome for their relationship. Here, we discussed the most appropriate waiting time, as well as explained why it is important to give your body some time before being penetrated again.

Take the information shared here into mind if you have recently given childbirth and share the information with your husband, ensuring that he also understands the process —and knows when he would be able to get intimate with you again. 

Donna Begg is an expert editor, a mentor, analyst and a researcher.

Watch this Buzzfeed video of two mothers explaining what sex is like after giving birth.