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Intimacy After Childbirth

How your sexual relationship might alter after having a baby?

For new parents, sex and intimacy can be difficult due to a lack of time, fatigue, hormonal changes, and concerns about contraception. It's fine if you and your lover have both become a little squeamish about sex. However, if you and your partner have differing levels of sexual desire, your relationship may be stressed. 

Things do get back on track in most relationships, but patience is required. Consult your doctor if you're concerned that your sex life is out of control.  

Your sexual feelings after having birth, women

You may feel as if you'll never have sex again after having a baby. But your interest in sex will return as you heal. Many mothers experience this during the first three months of their baby's birth, but it's usual for it to take longer.   

Some mothers report that breastfeeding their infant makes them feel sensuous and erotic. This is due in part to the hormone oxytocin, which has a role in both milk let-down and sexual stimulation. It's perfectly natural. Breastfeeding mothers may also notice that they are less interested in sex when breastfeeding.  

When can I have sex again after having a baby? 

When you're ready to have sex again, it's all about how you feel (unless your doctor has advised otherwise). 

Your body will need time to heal if you had a tough birth or stitches. Many new mothers experience pain or discomfort during sex, although this normally passes. It's possible that using a lubricant or oestrogen cream will make sex more pleasurable. Muscle spasms or anxiousness might cause discomfort at times. 

On the other side, some new mothers and their partners report that sex is less enjoyable after the muscles have been stretched during birth. Pelvic floor exercises can assist in regaining muscle tone.  

Breastfeeding can cause vaginal dryness, which can be alleviated by using a lubricant. If you're breastfeeding, you may notice that milk spills from your breasts while you're having intercourse. Before having sex, try feeding or expressing your kid. 

Following the birth of a child, contraception is recommended

Because you may not be ready to have another child as a new parent, it's a good idea to consider contraception before you resume sex. During the six-week check-up for mom and baby, your doctor or midwife will normally discuss contraception with you. Talk to your GP or midwife about contraception if you and your partner wish to have sex before then.  

Even before they get a period, some mothers are fertile or have begun to ovulate. If they have sex without using contraception, this increases their chances of becoming pregnant

You may have heard that breastfeeding reduces your chances of becoming pregnant. This is sometimes the situation when a new mother: 

  • Is exclusively breastfeeding at all times of the day and night 
  • Isn't providing anything else for her infant to eat or drink (just breastmilk) 
  • Has a baby under the age of six months 
  • Since having birth, she hasn't had a period

However, keep in mind that nothing is guaranteed. If you have intercourse without utilising contraception, you may still become pregnant.  

Ideas for re-establishing intimacy 

There are alternative options for keeping in touch with your lover. Talking and listening to your feelings with your partner will help you both understand what's going on in your relationship and keep the channels of communication open. 

If one of you stays at home with the baby while the other works outside the home, make sure you're both doing your share of the housework – or that you're happy with how domestic tasks are split.  When you're a new parent, spending time together can be difficult, but it's still crucial. You might be able to go for a walk together or have a meal. If you can't find someone to watch your child, take him for a walk in the pram while you converse, or enjoy dinner together after he's fallen asleep. 

Giving and receiving sexual pleasure can be done in a variety of ways. Consider sex as a final destination rather than a starting point. Begin with modest gestures such as holding hands and hugging. When you're both ready, the physical attraction might develop and lead to sex.  

Taking care of yourself 

Healthy food and exercise, as well as rest and sleep, are all important aspects of self-care. When you're exhausted, unwell, or stressed, it's difficult to be interested in sex. If your infant wakes up throughout the night, attempt to get some rest during the day. 

It can also assist you in maintaining a sense of equilibrium in your life. It's easy to get caught up in your child's day-to-day care and forget about your own needs when you have a newborn infant. Making time for yourself every day, even if it's only for 15 minutes, can help. Catching up with a buddy, going on a walk, or reading a book are all possibilities. It could be when your child is sleeping, just before she wakes up in the morning, or during your work lunch break. Discuss with other parents how they manage to find time for themselves. 

Take Away

Consult your GP or a child and family health nurse if you and your partner require assistance. They may suggest you to a therapist or a couple's counsellor. Other parents can also be a valuable source of support and assistance. If you're in a parents group, you could try chatting to other new moms and dads in there.