Libido Changes

For many women, sex during pregnancy has a new perk -- no worry about birth control. Spontaneity may increase your desire for sex as can hormonal changes during pregnancy. On the other hand, it's also normal to have a decrease in libido at times during pregnancy. You may feel more relaxed about these potential ups and downs in your sex drive if you know what to expect.

Here's a common pattern of libido during pregnancy:

  • First trimester: Nausea, fatigue, or breast tenderness may kill your sex drive. But don’t despair -- your sex drive will come back.
  • Second trimester: Your libido may kick into high gear. In fact, increased blood flow throughout your body can enhance your orgasms.
  • Third trimester: Sex may feel uncomfortable as your baby's birth approaches. Some women may not regain their libido for a few months or so after the baby is born.

Call Doctor If:

  • You aren't sure sex is safe because of health complications.
  • You have pain, bleeding, or significant discomfort during or after sex.

Step-by-Step Care:

  • Talk to your partner. Listen and be open about each other's concerns and feelings.
  • Try different sexual positions if you're uncomfortable. Be on top or lie on your side, with your partner behind. Or get on your hands and knees, with your partner kneeling behind. These positions reduce pressure on your belly.
  • Use a sexual lubricant if vaginal dryness makes sex uncomfortable.
  • If some aspect of sex doesn't feel right for either of you, change what you're doing and talk to your OB about any physical complaints.
  • Enjoy intimacy in other ways. Cuddle, kiss, or massage each other. Enjoy a bubble bath together.
WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Nivin Todd, MD on December 17, 2020



University of California, San Francisco: "Sex During Pregnancy."

March of Dimes: "Physical activity: Sex During Pregnancy."

Nemours Foundation: "Sex During Pregnancy."

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