Pelvic Pressure After Sex During Pregnancy

Feeling pressure or heaviness in the pelvic area after sex during pregnancy is not harmful to your baby. It is a normal part of the way your body prepares for the birth of your child, especially during the second and third trimesters.

It is also a sign that your uterus is growing properly. However, if you have serious pain or bleeding, you should contact your healthcare provider.

Causes

When you’re pregnant, your whole body is going through major changes. Your organs are shifted, your breasts and nipples are growing and your hormones are running wild. It’s no wonder that sometimes pain can show up in places you didn’t expect. This includes the vagina, rectum and pelvic region.

Pelvic pressure after sex is common, especially during the second trimester. It’s caused by the baby’s increased weight, which puts pressure on the pelvic bones and ligaments. You may also have enlarged veins in the pelvic area due to pregnancy hormones that increase blood flow to support your baby. This can lead to the painful condition known as varicose veins.

Other causes of pelvic pain include the uterus getting bigger and pressing against the muscles in your lower abdomen. It may also be caused by a weakening of the pelvic muscles due to the hormone relaxin. This can lead to a problem called pelvic organ prolapse (POP), which is when the tissues in your pelvic area start to swell.

You’re also more prone to infections like yeast infections and urinary tract infections when you’re pregnant, because of higher levels of estrogen in the body. Your doctor can prescribe a medication that’s safe for you and your baby to treat these infections. A low-grade infection is usually not a big deal, but you should tell your OB/GYN about any severe pain or bleeding.

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Symptoms

Pelvic pressure during sex is common and usually not a big deal, but it’s always a good idea to check in with your healthcare provider, particularly if you experience severe pain or bleeding. They can help determine whether there is an underlying issue that needs to be addressed.

The most common cause of pelvic pressure after sex during pregnancy is simply the weight of your growing baby. In the third trimester, your uterus may feel larger or heavier than usual due to stretching and widening to accommodate the growing baby, which can lead to pain during intercourse, Levitt says. You may also have a fuller-than-usual bladder, which can put additional pressure on your pelvic area during sex.

Another possible culprit is the hormone relaxin, which is released during pregnancy to loosen your ligaments and joints in preparation for childbirth. Relaxin can also make your cervix more sensitive, which can lead to sensitivity or pain during sex, Lamppa notes.

Other causes of pelvic pain during sex include enlarged veins in your pelvic area or on your vulva, which can make it painful to sit up or lie down. You might also have a urinary tract infection or yeast infection, which can also contribute to discomfort. If you have frequent, urgent urination or a burning sensation when you urinate, that’s a sign of an infection.

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Treatment

Many women experience pelvic pressure after sex during pregnancy, especially in the first or second trimester. This is normal and usually caused by hormonal changes, as well as the expanding uterus. It is important to remember that you are not alone and talking with others in a supportive manner can help you to feel more connected, comfortable, and fulfilled throughout your pregnancy.

Pelvic pressure is also sometimes the result of round ligament pain, which is a pair of cord-like structures within the pelvis that connect the front of the uterus with the groin area and help support it. The ligaments stretch as the uterus grows, and this can cause pain during sex and when moving.

Other causes of pelvic pressure during sex include a yeast infection (due to higher estrogen levels), painful urination, or vulvar varicosities. These symptoms are usually not a reason for concern, but it’s always good to talk about them with your doctor.

Fortunately, pelvic pressure after sex is usually not harmful to the baby and can be relieved by avoiding cigarette smoke or caffeine, getting enough sleep and using pregnancy pillows, and doing Kegel exercises. It is also helpful to communicate openly with your partner and try different positions during sex to find what feels comfortable for you both. It’s also a good idea to stay well-hydrated and drink plenty of water, and to avoid straining during bowel movements.

Prevention

A growing uterus during pregnancy can put pressure on the pelvic muscles and cause pain or discomfort during sexual activity. In some cases, this pain is relieved when the woman assumes a different position or increases the penetration depth during sex. In addition, enlarged veins due to hormone changes during pregnancy may aggravate varicosities in the pelvic area and cause pain during sex.

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Another possible source of pain or discomfort is the round ligaments, cordlike structures that connect the front of the uterus with the groin. This can cause serious pain during sex and aggravate pain after sex, as the ligaments stretch and tighten.

Finally, a urinary tract infection or yeast infection can also cause pain or burning during sexual activity or after sex and can be prevented with a prescription-strength antibiotic given by an OB/GYN. Women are at a higher risk for these infections during pregnancy.

During this time of excitement and change, it’s important not to panic over normal discomfort or pain. Instead, talk to your partner about what is causing the issue and what you can do to minimize discomfort. For example, trying different positions or using lubricant can help. Remember that intimacy is about more than just sex and you and your partner can explore other ways to connect during this special time in your lives.

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