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Having Sex to Induce Labor: Does It Work?

by Adriana Velez on November 27, 2012 at 4:07 PM

pregnant bellyBig news for those of you who wonder about pregnant nookie. You've heard that semen contains prostaglandin, right? Or that an orgasm can release it? Well, I guess they don't muster quite enough prostaglandin to trigger labor. Apparently, sex doesn't induce labor after all.

Researchers in Malaysia invited 1,100 women who were 35 to 38 weeks pregnant to, well, have at it with their baby-daddies. They told half to "have sex frequently." They gave no directions to the other half, only told them that while sex during pregnancy is safe the effects are unknown. And after all that whoopie, none of it seemed to make a difference.

The "sex all the time" party crew delivered on average at 39 weeks, just like the other group. So ... yay? I guess? Does anyone out there really enjoy having sex during those last few weeks, anyway?

I remember sex during the first half of pregnancy being ex-tre-me-ly fun. I was super sensitive, let's just put it that way. Oh sure, there were times when I was too nauseated or asleep to have sex -- but when I was awake and willing, whee!!!

But that's the first half. Then you get bigger. And your positions get limited. Near the end there's like one or two ways you can go about things, and you're just so physically uncomfortable it's almost something you do only out of charity, really. Or because it's your last chance to make a lot of noise before it wakes up the baby.

I actually did have sex just hours before I went into labor and all this time I've been crediting that with inducing it. But maybe it was just time? Or maybe it was the super-hot curry I had for dinner. Anyway, I guess this is less "YEAH! fist pump" good news for most expecting couples more "phew, one less thing to worry about" good news. So ... thanks science. And to all my friends who I told to just have sex when they were late delivering? Yeah, never mind. I was wrong.

How do you feel about sex during the last few weeks of pregnancy?

 

Image via karine*imagine/Flickr

Filed Under: 3rd trimester, is it safe, labor, pregnant sex & relationships

Comments

12
  • Nicole
    -- Nonmember comment from

    Nicole

    November 27, 2012 at 7:44 PM
    I don't think it works, when I was one day overdue I started having contractions, it didn't seem to be going anywhere so we tried sex, it did nothing. The contractions stopped and she was born four days later when real labor finally came .
  • shade...
    --

    shade.lotus

    November 27, 2012 at 8:22 PM

    i beg to differ on this one. my son was supposed to be a planned c-section. june 10th was the set date for me to have it done(my son was frank breech and had his poor little heels at his ears), on the 8th, at about 11:30 my now x-husband and i did the dirty one last time. not even 15 minuets after finishing our business my water broke. and my son was born at 2:26a.m. on the 9th. i asked my obgyn if sex was the cause of my water breaking and he replied with "that is a great possibility"


  • jalaz77
    --

    jalaz77

    November 27, 2012 at 8:37 PM
    I think it's prostaglandins in the semen that helps soften the cervix aiding in dilation. I believe it works only if your cervix is making changes. Having women 35-38 weeks trial this was irresponsible since going into labor isn't best for baby before 39 weeks.
  • twili...
    --

    twilightsbella

    November 28, 2012 at 12:29 AM
    It does work i was suppose to have a csection on oct 1 but on sep 27 me & my husband made love an hour later i started having contractions. I called my dr and went to the hospital and ended up having our son that same day :)
  • Haley...
    -- Facebook comment from

    Haley Maya Unger

    November 28, 2012 at 7:53 AM

    Worked for me.


  • Shawn...
    -- Facebook comment from

    Shawna Hofmann

    November 28, 2012 at 10:31 AM
    worked for me.. for some reason the last week of pregnancy my body wants sex...its awesome and usually within 24 hours after I'm having the baby. All 4 all naturally delivered within an hour of getting to the hospital.
  • Adria...
    -- Facebook comment from

    Adrian O'Brien

    November 28, 2012 at 1:46 PM

    Walking was about it for me.  Though, we joke that all it takes for my water to break was a birthday party the next day.  I missed my MIL/SIL combo party with my first child, and then my other sister-in-law's birthday party with my second.


  • Ty Tripp
    -- Facebook comment from

    Ty Tripp

    November 28, 2012 at 1:47 PM

    I did all that nookie for nothin! Never worked. lol. Now I know why.


  • grove...
    --

    groversbabe

    November 28, 2012 at 2:06 PM

    everybody is different sex can work for some and not for others just like walking works and other things for different people. even being induced by a doctor dont always work and sometime it does


  • marihla
    --

    marihla

    November 28, 2012 at 4:53 PM

    I tried this and failed miserably. I also tried RRLT, jumping jacks, a warm bath, a bus ride, pineapple and spicy food. Baby came 12 hours before her scheduled induction, three days after I stopped trying to self-induce.


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