After you have a baby, it's normal to be curious about your sex life. You've undoubtedly heard that some women experience vanishing libidos in the postpartum phase. Although that's true, there are other women who are ready to resume all sexual activity. Nothing can really predict which side of the sexual spectrum you'll end up on, but if you are feeling frisky then masturbation is a great place to start. Before you hop on the self pleasure train you might wonder how to masturbate after giving birth. Are there special precautions to take? Is all masturbation created equal? Turns out you're mostly a go, with just a few things to think about.
The big thing to consider when deciding whether or not you're ready to masturbate is how well you're healing. "Vaginal penetration before the six week check up is off limits due to the risk of infection," Lamaze certified childbirth educator Deena Blumenfeld of Shining Light Prenatal Education tells Romper. "Assuming that you've not had any severe tearing or complications with urination, you should be fine to masturbate with clitoral stimulation." A quick anatomy reminder here, your clitoris is pearl shaped and can be found above your urethra and vaginal opening, as explained on the Sex Info Online website. The clitoris is covered by a hood and lips of your vagina and is considered one of the most sexually arousing areas of the body. Clitoral stimulation can be done using your fingers and experimenting with non-penetrative gentle strokes. You can try different angles, pressures, and speeds to figure out what feels best.
Additionally, you can try bringing sex toys into your masturbation practice that are non-penetrative. Thanks to modern technology there are plenty of toys to help stimulate your clitoris every which way. There are a variety of clit-centric toys like clit pumps, teasers, and even oral simulators. According to Eden Fantasys, these toys work by increasing blood flow to the clitoris, thereby heightening sensitivity (which can trigger an orgasm). They come with different speeds of vibration, varying intensities, and even multiple textures.
Once you're out of the six week postpartum phase, you can consider penetrative options such as fingers inside your vagina, vibrators, and dildos. Exploring your postpartum body sexually is really encouraged because it will help you figure out what feels good. What felt good pre-baby might not feel good post-baby. Exploring these changes is good for couples who are getting their grooves back. Additionally, it's great for your health and life overall. "As a general rule, masturbation is a good thing since it relieves stress and can help you sleep," Blumenfeld says. "We also release oxytocin with orgasm. That hormone can help your uterus to continue to involute (contract) to return to it's pre-pregnancy size."
The benefits of postpartum masturbation are vast, you just have to listen to your body and make sure it's ready. Blumenfeld says it's important to check with your doctor or midwife to be sure your body is healthy enough for masturbation.