pregnant mother in a field at sunset

5 reasons for experiencing painful sex during pregnancy


Your sex life doesn’t stop just because you are pregnant. It’s perfectly normal to enjoy a happy and enjoyable sex life throughout your pregnancy.  

In fact, many pregnant people experience a surge in their sex drive and some even report out-of-this-world orgasms due to heightened sensitivity! 

However, for many, sex can sometimes be painful during pregnancy. This can be caused by a number of different factors which we will explore in this article.  

Causes of painful sex during pregnancy include: 

- Your body is changing  

One of the main causes of painful sex during pregnancy is that your body is changing in so many different ways. Not only is your belly growing, but your vaginal tissue may also be swollen, contributing to uncomfortable sex.  

Increased sensitivity in the pleasure zones 

During pregnancy, it’s common for your breasts and nipples to become incredibly sore and tender, meaning foreplay in these areas can become unpleasant.  

- Vaginal dryness  

Hormonal changes during pregnancy are renowned for causing vaginal dryness, meaning sex can become painful and uncomfortable.  

The good news is that lubricants are available that have been designed to ease vaginal dryness, including both AH! YES water and oil-based lubricants which are a great way to help you to feel more comfortable during sex. (They are also certified organic and designed to be side-effect free!) 


AH! YES WB water-based personal lubricants are designed to discreetly facilitate your pleasure and replenish your natural moisture without masking your skin and senses.  

Thoroughly researched, responsibly formulated with original and natural ingredients, AH! YES WB is free of hormones, glycerin and other chemicals often associated with unpleasant intimate health side-effects.   

Increased blood flow  

When you’re pregnant, blood flows to your pelvic region far more quickly than usual, which can result in discomfort and pain during sex. At the same time, a larger uterus sitting lower in your pelvis can also contribute to pain during intercourse.  

couple in bed together feet only showing

How to relieve painful sex during pregnancy? 

The way to relieve painful sex depends on what is causing your discomfort in the first place. For example, if your growing belly is making sex impossible in your normal sexual positions, why not try new ones? 

 On the other hand, if vaginal dryness is causing you problems, investing in a lubricant can be life changing. And, using pillows to ease pressure in different parts of your body can also help to enhance your sex life during this time of change.  

Is painful sex during early pregnancy normal? 

Yes! In fact, sex can be painful throughout your pregnancy due to normal changes in the body. You are growing a human being after all! The most common cause of painful sex during the first trimester is vaginal dryness caused by hormonal changes. 

Can painful sex be an early sign of pregnancy? 

As hormonal changes can increase the blood flow to your pelvic area, which in turn, can cause painful sex, this could be an early sign of pregnancy. If you’re experiencing painful sex and you suspect you could be pregnant, it’s always worth taking a pregnancy test. If you aren’t pregnant, and you’re still experiencing pain, make sure you book an appointment with your doctor to determine the cause.  

Remember, your sex life shouldn’t come to a halt just because you are expecting! There are plenty of solutions that will help you to enjoy a safe and happy sex life in the first, second, and third trimester of your pregnancy – if you want too!