kjekol/Fotolia

Does Masturbating During Pregnancy Cause Contractions? A Look At The Science

By
Share
Ad failed to load

When you're pregnant, there is a lot of extra blood flow to your down below, and that may affect you in surprising ways. You might find yourself more sensitive, and less desiring of intercourse, or it might be just the opposite. One thing is for sure, just because you're pregnant doesn't mean you're no longer a sexual creature. Heck, you're the very embodiment of fertility. If and when the need strikes, could there be complications? If you're flying solo, does that change? Does masturbating during pregnancy cause contractions, or are you safe to go forth?

Orgasms are a huge muscular event. The entire pelvic region clutches, the body's limbs are involved, the rush of oxytocin floods the system — giving the body a feeling of euphoria — and also, a pregnant woman's uterus begins to contract, according to Sexology in Midwifery. Oxytocin is involved in a few processes in the body, from the aforementioned orgasm, to breastfeeding, to childbirth. However, these are not true, labor-bringing contractions. They are merely the byproduct of your orgasm, and shouldn't be overly painful, last for more than a few hours, or be accompanied by any dizziness, severe bleeding (more than two tablespoons) or headache. If they are, you need to call your doctor right away, as these are red flags in pregnancy.

Most of the time, the contractions can be irritating, especially if you're trying to go to sleep after you masturbate, but pass relatively quickly, and without much fanfare.

Ad failed to load
Giphy

According to Family Medicine, sex and masturbation during pregnancy is a healthy, safe activity provided that you're given the go ahead by your doctor, and you aren't engaging in any risky sex practices. While masturbation is generally considered the safest sex, there is a small cause for concern when it comes to the use of toys during masturbation. According to a study in American Family Physician, sex toys need to be used only if they're extremely clean, because you don't want to upset the delicate microbiome of your vagina while you're pregnant, causing infection and leading to possible problems. Also, if you're using a phallus-shaped dildo or vibrator and penetrating yourself, you should be cautious in your approach. These toys are far more rigid than say, an erect penis or your hand, and can therefore cause a significant amount of tearing or damage to the sensitive vulva and vagina.

Does masturbation cause contractions if you don't orgasm? It's unlikely. Because it's the orgasm that releases the highest concentration of oxytocin, and the oxytocin is responsible for the onset of the contractions, masturbation without release is like lighting a bottle rocket, but dunking it in water. Also, it's like breakfast cereal without sugar — dear Lord, what's the point?

Ad failed to load
Giphy

Along with cramping and contractions, be aware that you may spot or bleed lightly after masturbating, especially if you penetrate your vagina at any time. The increased blood flow to your genitals puffs the tissue up more than at any other time, and all of those tiny capillaries are near the surface. Tearing is easy to do, and happens fairly often, according to HealthyWomen.org. If it's heavy, or if you feel off or dizzy, call your provider.

Masturbation is a fun, safe way to pass the time, and you don't need any special equipment. Heck, the very point of masturbating is that you're doing it solo — not necessarily alone, though, am I right? If ever there's something that's worrying you about your body during pregnancy, call your doctor. That's what they're there for. Trust me, they've heard it all before. Also, they've totally masturbated — everyone has. There is no shame in your game. So if your contractions are scaring you, call them. Otherwise, have fun. I did hear that there's a new 50 Shades of Grey book out now.

Ad failed to load

Check out Romper's new video series, Romper's Doula Diaries:

Watch full episodes of Romper's Doula Diaries on Facebook Watch.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

8 Ways Your Baby Is Trying To Say That, Yes, You Are Their Favorite

For a baby to show a preference for a specific person is not only normal, but an essential part of their development. Babies need to form strong attachments to their caregivers for their emotional, social, and physical wellbeing. Usually, but not alw…
By Kimmie Fink

10 Reasons Why I Won't Apologize For Giving My Toddler A Pacifier

My first child had no interest in a pacifier. I tried a couple times to get him to take one, but he always spat them out and gave me an incredulous, judgmental look. But my second? It was love at first suckle. And after a while, the incredulous, judg…
By Jamie Kenney

Being A Dog Parent Prepared Me For Having A Baby, Really

I’ve always wanted kids; I was never as sure about raising a puppy. Then I spent six months living with someone who brought home an eight-week-old golden retriever puppy, and I see no way to make it out of that experience claiming not to love dogs. I…
By Heather Caplan

20 Of The Most Popular Unisex Names Of All Time, That You'll Be Hearing More Of For Sure

You might think of unisex names as a fairly recent trend, but the truth is these versatile monikers have been commonly used throughout history (well, some more commonly than others). That's why the team over at Names.org recently compiled a list of t…
By Jacqueline Burt Cote

How To Have A Date Night With No Babysitter, Because It's Easier Than You Think

After having children, many couples feel that their love lives immediately go out the window, but it's so important to make your romantic life a priority so both you and your partner can be the best versions of yourselves you can be. As we all know, …
By Abi Berwager Schreier

9 Ways Baby No. 3 Made My Family Feel Complete

My husband and I decided to have another baby right after we got married and, well, we had no idea what we were getting into. I got pregnant right away, endured a high-risk pregnancy, and, before I knew it, my third baby had arrived. Together, we emb…
By Steph Montgomery

8 Stereotypes About New Dads That Are *Totally* True

Much like new mothers, new fathers have a lot on their plate. Parenting can be scary and complex, especially at first and regardless of your gender. People want to do right by their kids, after all. And since all new parents are a hot mess, dads are …
By Priscilla Blossom

8 Differences Between Being Pregnant In Your 20s Vs 30s, According To Science

Whether you're planning a pregnancy, or just thinking about your future family, it's typical to think about things like child-spacing, how many kids you want, and when to start trying to conceive. When making your pro/con list, you might also conside…
By Steph Montgomery

16 Moms Share Remedies For Their Most Intense Chocolate Cravings During Pregnancy

For better or worse, pregnancy is usually synonymous with odd cravings. Sure, there are the stereotypical combos like pickles and ice cream that plague gestating women the world over, but there are other mind-boggling combinations, too, including but…
By Candace Ganger

Putting Sunscreen On Your Kid Doesn't Have To Be A Fight — Here's How To Do It

I am almost translucent, so me and sunscreen are basically besties at this point. Even though my children are beautifully deep brown thanks to my husband's genetics, I still slather them like biscuits being buttered because I refuse to take risks wit…
By Cat Bowen

7 Things A Mom Really Means When She Says She Doesn't Want Anything On Mother's Day

Every year my family asks me what I want for Mother's Day, and every single year I tell them the same thing: Nothing. So, by now, they know that when I say "nothing" I absolutely do not mean "nothing." In fact, there are more than a few things a mom …
By Candace Ganger

19 Moms Share The Way They Cured Their Pregnancy Comfort Food Cravings

I was obnoxiously sick during the first trimester with, "lucky" for me, both of my pregnancies. For the first three months I lived on saltines, lemonade, and fresh bread. Once I was able to eat, however, all I wanted was savory and sweet comfort food…
By Dina Leygerman

8 Fascinating Facts About Babies Born In May, The Luckiest Month Of All

The height of all things fresh and springy, May is an excellent month to have a baby. It's a time of growth, graduations, and outdoor celebrations. And these fascinating facts about May babies will give you more reasons than ever to appreciate childr…
By Lindsay E. Mack

I Used To Judge Formula-Feeding Moms — Until I Became One

The other patrons in the hip Brooklyn restaurant probably couldn’t care less what I was feeding my baby, but I’ll always remember the shame I felt as I quickly mixed up his bottle of formula in front of them. I admitted to my childless friend that I …
By Katherine Martinelli

7 White Lies It’s Necessary To Tell To Keep Your Relationship Healthy

Telling lots of lies typically isn't associated with a healthy, strong, lasting relationship, and that's still certainly true, but not all lies are exactly the same. Though you've probably heard from someone at least once or twice that the lie they t…
By Lauren Schumacker

The Skinny Jeans That Saved Me Postpartum

Accepting my post-pregnancy body is hands-down one of the most difficult things I’ve ever done. It’s something that I still work on every single day. During my first pregnancy, I was 20 years old, so I managed to bounce back quickly. In fact, I dropp…
By Allison Cooper

7 Ways Your Baby Is Trying To Say They Feel Safe

In those first weeks of new motherhood, it can feel like you need an interpreter for your newborn. With their limited means of communication, figuring out what message your baby is trying to get across to you can be a challenge. With time, however, y…
By Kimmie Fink

Here's Why Dogs Are Obsessed With Babies' Poop, According To Science

Most family dogs seem to understand babies, and they're more than happy to make friends with the newest member of the pack. It's adorable... for the most part and until you go to change your little one's diaper. Suddenly, you're wondering why dogs ar…
By Lindsay E. Mack

6 Signs You're Meant To Have A Big Age Gap Between Kids

There's a five year age difference between my two children, to the day. Their age gap wasn't planned but, for a variety of reasons, works well for our family. And since I was so focused on having a second baby, I totally overlooked the signs that wou…
By Candace Ganger

Here's The Right Birth Method For You, According To Your Zodiac Sign

If you're pregnant, you've probably given childbirth some serious thought. Some moms-to-be prepare a meticulous birth plan, while others are comfortable just going with the flow. And me? Well, I made a plan... but that plan was useless when faced wit…
By Steph Montgomery

My Dog Knew I Was Pregnant Before My Family Did

Growing up, I was 100 percent sure I'd be a mom one day. To a dog, that is. My baby plans came later. And once my husband and I were sure we wanted both a dog and a baby, we'd add to our joint dog-and-baby name list over Sunday brunch or on date nigh…
By Melissa Mills
)}