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Sex and periods: what you really need to know

reading time: 2 minutes reading time
Two pairs of feet out of bed

Cramps? Check. Bloated? Check. Craving sex and nothing you can do about it? Think again.

Let’s set the record straight. Period sex is absolutely fine. You might even feel better for it, but there are a few precautions that you might want to take.

Speak to your partner – They’ll probably be ok with it. Surveys have shown that men are actually often more willing to try period sex than women1. After all, how many guys do you know who would say no to sex?

Enjoy it – At the start of your period, the levels of your sex hormones, oestrogen and testosterone, are extremely low, but then they start rising2. As they increase, you may start to feel more and more amorous. Rather than suppressing these feelings, we say embrace them, they can often make the sex more enjoyable.

Pleasure release = pain relief – When you orgasm, your uterus muscles contract and relax several times. This can help to relieve menstrual cramps, as well as releasing endorphins that put you in a great mood and keep you smiling.

Take care – Let’s make this clear. You CAN get pregnant on your period. Some people ovulate late and others ovulate early, so your ovulation can actually overlap with your period. Additionally, sperm is tough and can stay alive inside your body for up to a week, so you should always take the necessary precautions. If you use a contraceptive pill, you should still be protected against pregnancy. However, your cervix is more open during your period, which increases your risk of contracting a sexually transmitted infection. We would always recommend using a condom.

Embrace the mess – Sex and periods together. That’s going to get messy. But, who cares? We recommend sticking a towel down and avoid going on top, let gravity help you out a little. Using a condom will also help with the clean-up and if you want a more innovative solution, there are some pretty cool options available. This clever device has been designed specifically to make period sex a less messy experience.

There’s no reason why you can’t enjoy sex all through the month. There are a few things to consider when getting amorous during your period, but it certainly doesn’t need to be avoided at all costs. It can even make you feel better and help to relieve some of the symptoms of PMS. However, it’s not for everyone. If you don’t like the idea of period sex there are other things you can do to stop your period from interfering with your love life. Try asking your doctor for contraceptive options that reduce the number of periods you have or find out more here.