What you need to know about sex after a caesarean section

What you need to know about sex after a caesarean section

What you need to know about sex after a caesarean section

November 17, 2020

Educational program Sex

After giving birth, you will have to wait at least a month and a half.
Photo by Ekaterina Komissarova

Ekaterina Komissarova

Lifehacker medical journalist

What you need to know about sex after a caesarean section


Why you can’t have sex right away after a caesarean section

Caesarean section – this is not a natural birth, but a full-fledged surgical operation on the abdominal cavity. As with any such procedure, it must be followed by a period recovery. In simple words: dissected muscles, skin, uterus need time to heal after injury.

Recovery after a caesarean section usually takes longer than after a natural birth.

A young mother will have to spend about 3-4 days in the hospital so that doctors can observe how the wound heals. The woman will be bandaged and given painkillers. They may have to be taken even after discharge – for some mothers, pain attacks can recur for several weeks. Given this, a woman is unlikely to want to have sex. But even if the desire appears, the doctors will be against it.

The fact is that any physical load on the abdominal muscles can lead to divergence of the seams and bleeding or inflammation of the wound. Therefore, in the first weeks after caesarean section, it is extremely recommended:

  • drive;
  • play sports and perform physical exercises associated with a load on the abdominal muscles;
  • lift anything heavier than a baby;
  • have sex.

When can I have sex after a caesarean section?

Definitely not earlier than 4-6 weeks after childbirth. During this period, the incisions and the uterus are still healing, bleeding and other vaginal discharge are possible. Experts from the American Academy of Obstetrics and Gynecology forbid a young mother from even inserting something, whether it be a vibrator or even fingers, into the vagina.

However, about a month and a half after the birth of a baby, most women recover and can return to their usual types of physical activity, including sexual activity.

There is an important nuance. Recovery times are individual. One girl will need 3-4 weeks after a caesarean section to feel good. Another even after 6 weeks may experience discomfort and uncertainty in movements. Therefore, it is worth talking to a gynecologist about when you can start having sex.

How to make sex after a caesarean section comfortable and safe

Even if a woman feels that she has fully recovered, and the doctor confirms this, some problems may arise. Here are a few recommendationsto avoid discomfort.

1. Make the foreplay as long and gentle as possible.

Childbirth and the first months of a baby’s life are a lot of stress for a woman. It is difficult for a young mother to relax. The task of the partner is to help her in this.

Perhaps the first time or two foreplay – gentle hugs, caresses, careful massage, during which a woman listens to her feelings, surrenders to them – will generally replace the traditional sexual intercourse. Be patient.

2. Prepare the lubricant

Hormonal changes after childbirth often lead to vaginal dryness. Therefore, a lubricant, preferably water-based, should be at your fingertips.

3. Replace sex with penetration with cunnilingus or petting

If penetration is uncomfortable or painful, it must be stopped immediately. More precisely, to translate into an alternative form. For example, try to bring a woman to orgasm by caressing her crotch with your fingers or tongue.

4. Find a comfortable position

Choose simple positions in which a woman does not have to feel pressure on her stomach or strain her abdominal muscles.

The ideal option is the spoon position: the partner lies on her side, the partner hugs her from behind. This is a very sensual and tender position in which a man can caress with his hands the breasts, thighs and crotch of a woman to increase her arousal.

Illustration: ARTHA DESIGN STUDIO / Shutterstock

Do not rush to return to more complex options. Cowgirl, doggy style, sitting face to face – the positions are definitely exciting and beautiful. But they give a tangible physical load on the lower abdomen. Switch to them only after sex in the spoon position becomes as comfortable as possible, and you are sure that the woman wants more.

5. Follow the sensations

If a young mother feels pain during sex, and even more so if the pain does not decrease, and only intensifies with each new attempt, it is necessary to visit a gynecologist as soon as possible. The cause of discomfort can be inflammation, vaginismus and other unpleasant conditions. It is important to diagnose them in time and start treating them.

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