Everything You Need To Know About Having Sex After Giving Birth

For those wanting to be a parent, giving birth is an amazing experience. You've gone through pregnancy week by week for nine months and finally, after that long haul, a baby arrives. And your life as you know it will never be the same. Priorities shift and what was once important is secondary to this infant you have. But what's paramount to remember is that although you're a parent now, you're a still person with sexual needs and desires.

When it comes to postpartum sex, things are different. Your body is different, your mindset is different, and even how you view the world is different. Because of this, you should expect sex to be different for the first few months after giving birth (via Medical News Daily).

"After having a baby, it's just a different kind of sex and connection," erotic expert and sex coach Kelly Swartz tells Today's Parent. "For many women, sex drive doesn't just magically re-establish itself after birth. It often requires care and attention."

But when it comes to postpartum sex, it's also about debunking the myths so you can put your mind at ease and, when you're physically and mentally ready, you can enjoy sex again.

Yes, your vagina will go back to how it was

One of the major concerns of women who have had a baby is that their vagina might be stretched out if they gave birth. However, this couldn't be further from the truth.

"Vaginas are really elastic and really resilient," clinical assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Stanford University Jennifer Conti, M.D. told Glamour. "Even with really nasty lacerations, you see people back in clinic a few weeks later and it's remarkable — sometimes you can't even tell that they've had a tear."

Although doctors recommend that women wait for at least six weeks before diving back into penetrative sex again, it has nothing to do with a "stretched out" vagina and everything to do with the fact that you just pushed a baby out of your body. Having sex before that can be uncomfortable or downright painful (via Penn Medicine).

While you will likely feel a different sensation when you do have sex, it's important to realize that it's not about the loss of elasticity. Your vagina was made to bounce back after birth.

There's no exact timeline of when you'll be ready

For some women, getting back into the swing of things — including a healthy sex life — can feel essential to regaining a sense of their new normal. But these things take time. Your body is different, and you can't expect yourself to be ready for sex at a specific time. People's readiness for postpartum sex varies. For some, they feel ready six weeks after delivery, while for others it can take months (via Mayo Clinic). But no matter how long it takes to be ready, you should expect a few differences.

"There are things that are going to work, and there are things that may not work," OB-GYN Jacqueline Zuponcic, D.O. told the Cleveland Clinic. "Careful, thoughtful intercourse and good communication between you and your partner about what's working and what's not . . . is important to your experience."

Hormones play a big role in postpartum sex. You may find that you need lubricant while your body adjusts to no longer being pregnant or you may find that you have no sex drive at all — these are normal things (per Healthline).

Having sex after having a baby is going to be different, but not in a bad way. There will be changes in the months following the delivery, and they will be noticeable, but in time your body will, like your vagina, "bounce back." You might even find that the differences make your sex life even better than before.