Does Having Sex Help to Induce Labour?

Sex to Induce Labour – Does It Really Helps?

Medically Reviewed By
Dr. Sabiha Anjum (Gynecologist/Obstetrician)
View more Gynecologist/Obstetrician Our Panel of Experts

Yes, pregnancy is a wonderful journey but when things don’t take place on time, you obviously worry. The final couple of weeks of your pregnancy can be frustrating as you can’t wait for the baby to come out of you already. Coupled with the Braxton Hicks contractions, you will constantly be on your toes, expecting labour to set in any moment. But if that doesn’t seem to happen and your due date has passed, no doubt you will start panicking. This is also the time when you would start looking for sex positions to induce labour at 38 weeks or more. It is quite true that sex can induce labour in a pregnant woman, but you must understand the reasons behind it.

Can Sex Bring On Labour?

You must have heard that sex can induce labour in many books and movies and that is not false. Sex definitely does have the potential of inducing labour. The act might be a little awkward, given that there is a major pregnancy bump in the way. However, that can be corrected with some unique positions or you can opt for other ways as well.

How Does Sex Help Induce Labour?

Some people believe that the physical movements during sexual intercourse tend to trigger labour, while others believe it is the emotional release experienced during the act. There are many theories that seem to explain the reasons behind it.

The woman’s cervix is a major point of consideration when it comes to labour. Sperm contains prostaglandins. These are substances that resemble a hormone. Women tend to release it during sex as well. When these come in contact with the cervix, they accelerate the ripening process, which helps in triggering labour. Many medications that are used to artificially induce labour also make use of prostaglandins that are manufactured synthetically.

The act of sex includes stimulation of different areas of the body. This is what leads to a pleasurable feeling and, at times, an orgasm in the woman as well. When the human body experiences a pleasure, it releases oxytocin within the body. In a pregnant woman, high levels of oxytocin can cause contractions of the uterus to set in and rapidly accelerate labour. These contractions are also triggered artificially by using Pitocin, which is nothing but oxytocin manufactured in the lab.

When Can Sex During Pregnancy Induce Labour?

Having sex at any point in pregnancy will not induce labour all of a sudden. If your pregnancy is normal and free of any complications or risks of premature labour, then having sex or experiencing orgasm will trigger labour only if you have completed the full term of your pregnancy or are past your due date.

Are There Any Sex Positions That Can Induce Labour?

While you might be excited to get busy under the sheets, sex might not be the same with a massive baby bump in the way. Also, there are no specific sexual positions that might be more conducive in triggering labour as compared to others. While most women tend to find the woman-on-top a convenient position, achieving an orgasm can help boost the chances of inducing labour as well.

It is best to avoid the missionary position since it can put extended pressure on your tummy. Also, don’t try any position that requires you to lay on your back. It can cause the blood supply in the lower sections of your body to be interrupted and may lead to further problems. Kneeling on your bed while your partner enters you from behind, or spooning each other while lying on your side and having sexual intercourse are your best bets.

Are There Any Sex Positions That Can Induce Labour?

When to Avoid Having Sex During Pregnancy

Many couples are worried that their continued sexual activities during pregnancy might trigger labour a week or two sooner than expected and result in premature delivery. At times, women tend to experience minor contractions when they orgasm, which might lead them to worry. However, your body knows pregnancy better than you so labour won’t induce unless it is time for it. In case of pregnancy complications, your doctor might advise you to stay away from any sexual activity for it might lead to a premature birth or cause issues with the placenta. There are certain weeks when you might find your sexual drive at an all-time high. If your doctor is fine with it, you should be okay with getting down and dirty with your partner.

Does Sex Always Help Induce Labour?

There have been multiple instances where women have experienced labour after having wonderful sex with their partner. However, no conclusive evidence or research suggests a strong link between them. A few studies have pointed towards positive signs, while a bunch of other studies have shown women experiencing a reduction in the chances of labour as a result of sex. Hence, there is no clear answer to this.

Figuring out how much sex is needed to induce labour is not exactly what you should be looking for. The act of experiencing pleasure and having an orgasm together is what tends to induce labour, biologically speaking. Make sure you enjoy your time together and you will soon have your baby.

Also Read: Unpredicted Things That Happen during Labour

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