With changes in your libido and hormones leading to easier arousal and increased sensitivity, you might be wondering: does sex feel different during pregnancy? Will you get crazy horny or will anything sexual turn you off?
Does sex feel different during pregnancy? While most women assume that sex would be out the window during pregnancy due to morning sickness or fatigue, but turns out being pregnant could lead to a ridiculous number of fu*ks – or you may end up in a nine-month dry spell.
In some ways, pregnancy changes everything – from your food cravings to getting nauseous from certain smells. Your sex drive will change as well, and your arousal levels can change at different stages of pregnancy due to the increases and decreases in libido.
Does sex feel different during pregnancy?
Does sex get worse or better during pregnancy? Can you expect more intense orgasms, or will you not be able to orgasm at all (gasp)? These are some common ways how sex feel different during pregnancy:
1. You can’t get enough of sex!
Some women can’t get enough sex during their pregnancy, while others don’t want anything remotely sexual with their partners. You might experience an increase in vaginal lubrication and in genital blood flow, and find your clitoris to be hypersensitive and your libido off the charts.
Every woman’s experience is unique, so don’t feel guilty for being horny all the time and wanting more sex (or none at all)! Just know that your sex drive will ebb and flow throughout your pregnancy.
2. Or you don’t want sex at all!
Just as many women experience low libido during pregnancy. With hormones fluctuating wildly during the pregnancy rollercoaster, you might not be prepared for the major body image issues or the stress and fatigue of being pregnant.
If you can’t stomach anything remotely sexual with your partner right now, try other forms of physical intimacy such as foot or back rubs. It is also important to communicate how you are feeling about physical intimacy with your partner during this period.
3. You need getting used to a new body and the baby third-wheeling
Sex can feel uncomfortable when you have a big belly to navigate around, and your partner is afraid of being too rough and hurting you and the baby during sex. Some sex positions are better than others when it comes to comfort, and anything lying on your belly doesn’t work obviously. Positions that require you to be super athletic is also pretty much out of the window since you might feel much more cumbersome and heavy.
Your vagina will get a little longer too, due to the tissue surrounding the vagina getting looser and softer. Your vagina might also have a new odor and may feel more itchy because of a shift in your vaginal pH levels.
It might also feel weird to feel the baby’s movement during sex. Fact is, your baby doesn’t actually know what is happening outside, and any movement from the baby is just a normal fetal response to uterine activity, which can actually be rather comforting for the baby due to the undulating motions from sex.
Related: When to stop sex during pregnancy?
4. You could experience pregnancy Orgasms with a capital O!
Orgasms can feel intensely amazing during pregnancy, so embrace yourself! Maybe it is due to the increased sensitivity in your genital and pelvic regions or the flood of oxytocin hormones. You might even orgasm much more easily and quicker during your pregnancy!
However, once the third trimester hits, you might begin to feel frustrated that the once easy-to-achieve orgasms during the second trimester is now a distant memory. You might no longer be able to do your favorite positions and you will need to give up certain positions, or your full uterus might not contract like it used to.
There might even be the feeling of remaining in a semi-arousal state that seems impossible to resolve, where you might orgasm without feeling that sense of completion.
5. Your breasts might feel sore or bigger (and sexier!)
Don’t be surprised if you get a new set of bigger, sexier boobs during your pregnancy. Many women report that the second-trimester is the sweet spot as your belly has not caught up yet with those new double-Ds.
If your breasts are turning your partner on and they love touching it, know that it is completely normal if your breasts start leaking while being massaged or sexually stimulated. Swollen breasts is also very common amongst pregnant women, so any heavy touches to the breasts might be painful.
How does pregnancy affect sex drive?
When you are pregnant, your hormones produce higher levels of estrogen and progesterone, and there is an increase in blood flow to the muscles and lining in your vagina. This sensation can make things feel fuller down there, which may or may not feel pleasurable for you.
At the same time, your hormones might make you become aroused more easily, and orgasm more quickly, pleasurably, and frequently. Or it might take the opposite route and you have zero desire for sexual intimacy.
While we all react differently to hormonal changes, it is common for the sex drive to decrease during the first trimester, peak in the second (hello, pregnancy’s honeymoon!), and go down again in the third as you get closer to labor.
First trimester (weeks 0–13)
Nausea, tender breasts, fatigue, stress – the first trimester can be a huge change to adapt to for the majority of pregnant women. During the first trimester, you are probably not thinking or desiring sex, as surges in hormone levels can cause mood swings, nausea, and affect your libido.
Second trimester (weeks 14–27)
Also known as the pregnancy’s honeymoon period, this is the trimester when things will likely get hot and heavy for you!
Around the week 6 mark is when many women start to experience less nausea and higher levels of energy, plus an increase in estrogen and progesterone levels. The increase in estrogen leads to more vaginal lubrication and blood flow to the vulva, explaining why you might experience heightened arousal, sensitivity, and more pleasure.
Third trimester (weeks 28–40)
The third trimester is often the most challenging period where you will be dealing with swelling up like a balloon in the legs and ankles, weight gain, fatigue, and body aches – all of which can make having sex more difficult or less appealing.
You would also want to be more cautious about the sex positions during the last semester, as some positions can put unwanted pressure on your belly.
My partner says I feel different inside while pregnant!
Is your partner telling you that you feel different inside during sex? Does sex feel different during pregnancy?
With all the changes during pregnancy to your hormones and blood flow, pregnancy also affects the size and the feel of the inside. Your body has to make some adjustments to accommodate the baby and so that you can deliver safely, and one of the changes to the body is the swelling in the vagina during the third trimester.
The uterus does not increase significantly in size during the first and second trimesters as the baby is still the size of your fist. In the third trimester, the baby starts to grow and the demand of the amount of blood that flows to the uterus increases, resulting in the inflammation of the vagina.
Learning to appreciate the changes inside of you is important, as these changes are necessary for the healthy birth of your baby. Sex feel different during pregnancy and that is completely normal!