Getting your period is not necessarily mean that you should stop having sex during that time. In fact, for some women, sex during the menstrual period can be more pleasurable than at other times of the month. Indeed, good sex needs lubricants, and during the menstrual cycle, there is already lubrication in women’s vagina, so sex becomes more comfortable during that period. Moreover, studies show that sex during the menstrual period can reduce menstrual period-related effects such as cramps, mood swings, anxiety, etc. According to a study published in 2013, sexual activities can ease migraines and cluster headache pain in some people.
Prevention of STIs (Sexually Transmitted Infections) using condoms or good contraception during the menstrual cycle can make your sex more safe and enjoyable. But before having sex during periods, you should understand the risk of STIs, other infections, and pregnancy during the menstrual cycle.
Infection Risk From Sex During Periods
There is always the risk of STIs like HIV infection from sex during periods. The virus can be present in menstrual blood so doctors insist on using condoms to reduce this risk. The risk of infection can be minimized by using either a male condom or a female condom. There are also chances of some other infections in general during periods. According to experts, the pH level of your vagina remains 3.8 to 4.5 throughout the month. But during menstruation, this level increases due to the high pH level of the blood, so the yeast is able to grow more rapidly.
Vaginal yeast infection is most likely to occur in the week before your menstrual period, and having intercourse during this time may increase the chance of infection. However, there is no clear evidence of a higher risk of yeast infection from sex during menstruation. According to experts, some women may have also the risk of urinary tract infections after intercourse during their periods. This is probably related to bacteria being able to travel to the bladder more easily with intercourse, but it can happen at any time during the menstrual cycle.
Why Sex During Periods Lowers the Risk of Pregnancy
When you have intercourse during your period, your chances of getting pregnant are very low as you are usually several days away from ovulation during your period. But there is yet the possibility of ovulation. If your menstrual cycle is short (21 to 24 days) and you have sex at the end of your period, sperm can remain available in your vagina for up to five days, in that case, pregnancy is possible. But if you are expecting a baby then this is not the right time to try to get pregnant.
Why there is less need for lubrication in sex during menstruation
There is already enough wetness in the vagina during periods, so you don’t need lubricants in your intercourse during that time. If you feel the need for a lubricant, there are water-based lubricants available in the market that are safe for both sex and condom use.
Silicone and hybrid lubricants, which are both water-based and silicone-based, are also safe for both sex and condom use. Using oil-based lubricants, especially mineral oil-based lubricants can cause your condom to burst and oil-based lubricants are forbidden to be used with latex condoms.
Having sex during menstruation is good for menstrual-related effects
If you experience cramps, anxiety, and other menstrual-related effects during your menstrual period, having sex at this time may be beneficial for you. Experts say that since orgasms release feel-good hormones like endorphins, oxytocin, and dopamine—you could theoretically say they’ll also reduce some of the effects of menstruation. So, there is no harm in trying sex during your periods.
Enhanced sexual arousal during periods
You may feel more sexually aroused and sensitive during this time of the month due to the changes in your hormone levels. Experts say that many women experience an increased feeling of constriction in the pelvic region, which can also increase their sex drive or desire. But for some women, this added sensitivity can make it uncomfortable for them to have sex during this time. The important thing is to make sure that both you and your partner are comfortable in sex during this situation.