Sex Positions You Should Avoid
Once the go-ahead is given by your doctor to have sex after your C-section, as a couple, you both will have to consider a few things before taking the plunge.
The missionary position is the one you should avoid as it could put a lot of pressure on the cut and this could hurt you. If you want to avoid any direct contact with the incision on your abdomen, use a side or rear entry position during intercourse. The woman-on-top position is also highly recommended to eliminate any worry about pressure on the incision.
Make sure you let your partner know about any pain or discomfort while trying any sex position. Do not try any new sex positions that you havent attempted before, during this time.
An Introduction To Sex After Birth
Sex after birth can take some practice as well as trial, error, and repair. We encourage all postpartum people to go at their own pace and to choose to have sex again once theyre ready both physically and emotionally. Giving birth can have many impacts on the body and the mind and we strongly encourage that people be ready in all aspects before resuming sex after birth.
How To Cope With Postpartum Sex Changes
After a major abdominal surgery like a c-section, your body will feel different, so itâs important to ease your way into intimacy. This process can start during your recovery process over the initial few weeks after birth, even before sex is on the table again.
âI always recommend that clients start by resting their hands very lightly over their incision early on, around 1 week postpartum. Then ask your partner to rest their hands over the incision point very lightly. Use the warmth of your hands to stimulate circulation in the tissue and reintroduce touch to the area,â Lyons recommends. âThe last thing you want is for the pelvic and genital region to be a no-go zone. The sooner you can create safety in contact, the better. Both the postpartum person and partner will build trust in themselves to be sensitive enough and in the body to heal enough for a reinvigorated sex life down the road.â
When youâve just given birth â whether vaginally or via c-section â your whole world is different. Coping with changes to your body, as well as tending to your emotional state is imperative. It is completely okay to take it easy when it comes to postpartum sex.
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When Can I Have Sex
Theres no one-time fits all when it comes to returning to sexual activity after a cesarean delivery, but many women will wait between four and six weeks before resuming intercourse.
Although you may experience slightly less bleeding with a cesarean section, it will still take about six weeks for your cervix to close completely. Some women may feel ready to resume intercourse sooner than others, but you should only have sex again once given the ok by your obstetrician and when you feel comfortable.
Heres what to expect from your cesarean delivery recovery and sex postpartum.
Will Sex Be Painful After A C
Once your doctor gives you the green light to have sex after C-section recovery, your first time could be more uncomfortable than it might have been after a vaginal delivery. Why? A study published in the International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology in 2015 found that Cesarean delivery is associated with persistent pain during or after sex, a condition known as dyspareunia. The study’s authors looked at which factors contributed to such pain, including breastfeeding, fatigue, postpartum depression, and even abuse.
More than 1,200 first-time mothers across Melbourne, Australia, participated in the research. Most of those women who had resumed having sex by 12 months postpartum said they experienced pain the first time they did so after having their babies, and close to a fourth of those women still reported pain at 18 months postpartum. But women in the group who had an emergency Cesarean section, vacuum extraction, or elective C-section had double the risk of pain during or after sex at 18 months postpartum as women who had spontaneous vaginal births with intact perineums or unsutured tears.
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Choose Sexual Positions Carefully
If your incision is still tender, you may be worried that positions like the missionary position will put too much pressure on the incision and will hurt. You may wish to use a position where you have the woman on top, or a side or rear entry position to avoid direct contact with your incision.
While the incision is healed around the six-week mark in most women, there is still a chance that you are sensitive to pressure on it. You may also note that you have some numbness or tingling. This is normal. However, pain should be reported to your practitioner immediately.
Health Care Providers Advise Waiting At Least Six Weeks After Giving Birth To Have Sex Youll Need To Get Clearance From Your Health
Many factors can go into how long after giving birth you can have sex. Whether you delivered vaginally or via cesarean section, your body needs time to heal.
Waiting at least six weeks after childbirth to have sexual intercourse is best. Youll need to get clearance from your provider, because there are risks to having sexual intercourse too soon after giving birth.
Having sex too soon increases the risk of hemorrhage and uterine infection. A cesarean section is major surgery, and your body will need at least six weeks and likely eight weeks to heal.
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What Are The Ideal Sex Positions After C
There are no sex positions that are off-limits after a C-section delivery. However, some women may find it difficult or have irritation of incision in certain positions, such as missionary positions. This can often be felt by mothers who had more than one C-section delivery. Some women may feel comfortable in side-lying positions and women-on-top positions after a C-section. However, it is safe to try any position that doesnt bother your incision .
Every woman and childbirth is different, so the general recommendations cannot fit all. Therefore, you may experiment to find a comfortable position. Women who had emergency C-sections and delivery complications may need more time to heal, potentially limiting the type of sex position they may choose. You may check with your healthcare provider for more individualized recommendations.
When To Resume Sex After C Section
you still may have some discomfort from surgery, Not-so-great news for moms whove gone through this procedure, Having a C-section is a major surgery, Typically, 38 percent said their sexSex After My C-Section Helped Me Stop Feeling Like Id Failed Giving Birth My postpartum body felt foreign, Although youMost doctors advice not to put tampons or menstrual cups or have sex for 6 weeks after a C-section, by four weeks, even after their 6 week post partum check up, and shell probably cop to it not being the best
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When Can I Drive After A C
You should wait until youre healedwhich is typically around two weeks.
We understand that you may feel fine. Its very tempting to believe that you can easily drive shortly after a C-section.
But what if you have to brake suddenly? The seat belt stretches across your abdomen, and this can be painful in a sudden stop.
Also, ask yourself this question: Are you able to get in and out of the car easilyand comfortably?
These are some of the reasons we want you to hold off before getting behind the wheel.
What To Expect During A Tummy Tuck
Before a tummy tuck, youre given intravenous sedation, or a general aesthetic. A horizontal incision is then made between your bellybutton and the pubic hairline. The precise shape and length of this incision will vary from patient to patient, and its related to the amount of excess skin.
Once the incision has been made, the abdominal skin is lifted so that repairs can be made to the muscles below. If there is excess skin in the upper abdomen, a second incision may be necessary.
Next, the abdominal skin is pulled down, trimmed, and sutured together. Your surgeon will create a new opening for your bellybutton, push it through to the surface, and suture that into place. Incisions are closed, and bandages are applied.
You may also have a compression or elastic wrap thats designed to reduce swelling and provide support to your abdomen during the healing process. In some cases, drainage tubes are also placed beneath the skin to drain blood or fluid.
A full tummy tuck can take anywhere from one to two hours, or longer.
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Are Sex Toys Safe To Use After A C
For some moms, it could be tempting to try stimulation with a sex toy prior to exploring intercourse postpartum. Experts agree that this may actually be a good strategy for c-section moms once cleared for intercourse.
âToys are just as safe as intercourse, depending on the toy,â Lyons tells Romper. âUse common sense and start slowly so you can learn what works for you. In fact, this is a great time to start using less invasive toys that might be more sensual before you introduce penetration of any kind.â
Have I Thought About Contraception
Very important information: you can get pregnant soon after the birth of your baby. This can happen even if you are breastfeeding and your periods havent reappeared. So make sure you look into your options for contraception and discuss it with your health visitor, midwife, GP or contraception clinic .
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Am I Worried About Having Sex Post
You might be thinking Will it feel different? or How will we ever find the energy to do anything more than collapse on this bed?
You might start by gently exploring for yourself first your vagina to discover whether there is any pain or change . You could then discuss the changes to your body with your partner and how you want to be touched. You might want to use a lubricant and make sure you are fully aroused before penetration and try positions that limit penetration.
You could also grab a chat with your health visitor or GP to go through your questions about post-baby sex. If you experience any pain, see your GP .
When Can You Use Birth Control After A C
Your doctor will typically discuss your hormonal birth control options at your 6-week postpartum check-up, or possibly sooner. Minkin tells Romper the most important thing she wants c-section moms to know is that âbabies can be born 9 months apart â even with breastfeeding.â She explains that âmost providers won’t want you to start using combined hormonal birth control until at least 4 weeks after delivery, but you can always use condoms.â
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Remember: Healing Is A Process
In an ideal world, sparks fly when you finally have sex after a long time.
The reality for most people is quite different. The first time having sex after giving birth may be uncomfortable or painful.
The healing process is not linear. In other words, you may feel great one day and totally down the next. Sometimes, sex for the first time after giving birth causes bleeding. Many people find that bleeding stops for a few days only to start back up again.
The recovery process for people who have had C-section deliveries is generally longer than for those who have had a vaginal delivery. Talk to your partner about any concerns you may have, and wait until you feel ready.
If you are experiencing pain in your vagina or around the C-section scar, be sure to visit your health care provider to rule out infection or other complications.
What Causes Painful Sex After C
The exact cause of postpartum dyspareunia, that is, painful sex after childbirth remains unclear in many cases. This could occur both in women who underwent C-section delivery and those who had a vaginal delivery. More than 25% of women who underwent C-sections were shown to have postpartum dyspareunia in a study. According to this study, it took up to 5.5 months to recover from the pain, and most felt tenderness up to one year after delivery .
The following factors may cause painful sex after C-section delivery .
- Low estrogen levels: Hormone levels can fluctuate in the postpartum period. Breastfeeding can lower estrogen levels, which may lead to vaginal dryness and low libido in many women.
- Muscular issues: Many women may feel pain during intercourse since the pelvic floor muscles were under pressure while holding the baby during nine months of pregnancy.
You may seek the consultation of an OB-GYN or other healthcare professionals if you continue to experience pain during sex even after several months of childbirth. Doctors may examine and prescribe estrogen creams for vaginal dryness and refer physical therapists for exercises and manual therapy for muscular problems.
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Whats The Best Time For A Tummy Tuck After A C
If a tummy tuck is something youre considering after a cesarean delivery, speak with a certified plastic surgeon. For the best results, you should be back to your original weight and be in good physical condition.
Plan a tummy tuck only if you arent planning on becoming pregnant again. Otherwise, you may go through the cost and aggravation of the surgery and recovery only to find your abdomen stretched out again.
Keep in mind that the procedure involves anesthetic and medications. These can be a problem if youre breast-feeding. Talk to your doctor about what you should and shouldnt be taking.
What Happens If I Have Sex Before 6 Weeks
If you have sex before the 4-6 weeks postpartum, you may be susceptible to an infection or disrupting the vaginal sutures that you had placed.
Let me explain:
The opening of the cervix is normally the size of pin.
In order to have a full term vaginal delivery, your cervix has to dilate to 10 cm.
How big is 10cm?
The size of a full term babys head.
Ideally, you would want your cervix to close before putting anything in your vagina
As you could imagine, vaginal intercourse before the cervix closes can push bacteria that is normally present inside the vagina, upwards towards the cervix and into the uterus causing an infection.
This could present with fever, chills, abdominal pain, and foul smelling vaginal discharge.
You must let your doctor know if you experience any of these symptoms.
As far as disruption of vaginal or perineal sutures go
that is self explanatory :).
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Is There Anything I Can Do To Improve My Post
Kegel exercises, which involve contracting and releasing the vagina, can help strengthen the muscles in and around your pelvis in the postpartum period. That increased muscle tone in the vagina can make sex more pleasurable for women, says Dr. Minkin.
If youre a few months postpartum and you suspect you need more than pelvic floor exercises to restore your strength or controlor if youre experiencing pain while doing Kegels or during penetrative sexconsider seeing a pelvic-floor physical therapist for help.
Perhaps most important of all, if you find that things are moving more slowly than youd like, dont give up and know that you are in good company. There are tons of other women who are experiencing the same thing youre experiencing, says Miracle. And there are tons of women who have gotten through it and are better and are having happy, healthy sex lives.
When Can You Have Sex After A C
No matter if you give birth vaginally or via C-section, your body needs time to heal after delivery. While everyone heals at their own rate, most women find they are ready to have intercourse between four and six weeks after giving birth. Your healthcare provider will give you the green light when you are fully healed and ready for intercourse again.
Remember, after giving birth, your uterus takes about six weeks to return to its normal size and for your cervix to close back up. It is best to wait to resume any sexual relations until after the cervix has closed.
For mothers who give birth via C-section, the healing process is typically longer. Having a C-section is a major surgery, and most women will need more time to recover from a C-section than a vaginal delivery.
Whenever you resume having sex you must begin using birth control again. Pregnancy can happen almost immediately, even after just having given birth! Talk to your doctor to find a breastfeeding safe method of birth control .
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Will My Tear Or Cut Affect Sex
Let yourself recover first. Your stitches should dissolve after 10 days and by two weeks you should be healing well.
If you had stitches after an episiotomy or a first- or second-degree tear, it can take up to a month to heal . For third and fourth degree tears, wait until youve stopped bleeding and your tear has healed before having sex again .
With stitching, when youre ready to have sex again, youll want to take things slowly and gently. You could try positions that limit penetration or reduce the pressure on the stitched area. If sex is painful or difficult when you do try, speak to your GP. Any initial pain is likely to fade quickly.
Do I Feel Ready For Sex
This is pretty important. One study found that 65% of couples had tried to have sex eight weeks after birth, followed by 78% of couples at 12 weeks . Yet most couples dont go back to their pre-pregnancy sex frequency until closer to 12 months after their babys birth . The timing is very much up to you.
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