Masturbation During Pregnancy – Is is Safe to Do?

6 min read

Written by Ambili Kartha

Ambili Kartha

Masturbation during pregnancy

Gone are the days when even the talk of female masturbation was taboo and attracted nasty glares. Women need not hide in shame or avoid discussing masturbation. Just like men, women can masturbate too and there is absolutely nothing wrong in doing so, even when you are pregnant. Yes, you read that right – masturbation during pregnancy – it is OKAY!

While pregnancy is a time to be careful, a woman need not hide her needs and urges, especially when it comes to her sexual needs. Now, if you are pregnant and considering masturbation to satisfy your needs, don’t feel embarrassed. Just read on to know what is safe and what is not, so that you can pleasure yourself and stay safe throughout your pregnancy.

In This Article

Is it Safe to Masturbate During Pregnancy?

Masturbation is a natural way to satisfy one’s sexual needs – pregnant or not. The fetus is in the womb, the womb is attached to a woman’s most erogenous zone. It is quite natural to worry about the baby’s safety when a pregnant woman considers masturbation as a means to satisfy her sexual needs.

With nausea, morning sickness, and general fatigue, a pregnant woman’s interest in sexual activity may reduce. However, she might experience an increase in libido – her sex drive, due to the increase in estrogen and progesterone levels.

All those hormones raging inside to help support the baby will not only lead to mood swings but can cause your sexual appetite to increase as well. Masturbation during pregnancy when you are not in the “risk” category, is one of the safest ways to satiate your increasing sex drive. Most doctors approve of both masturbation as well as the use of sex toys, as long as they are clean. 

What Are the Benefits of Masturbation During Pregnancy?

What Are The Benefits Of Masturbation During Pregnanc

Unlike the age-old belief, masturbation does not cause any harm to women, even when pregnant. On the contrary, masturbation during pregnancy can help you in the following ways:

1. Reduce Stress Levels

You cannot use medications to help reduce stress during pregnancy. Masturbation can help in bringing down your stress levels by releasing dopamine, which is a feel-good hormone.

2. Improves Sleep

Many pregnant women suffer from sleep issues. When you orgasm after masturbation, your body releases chemicals that can help you sleep better.

3. Relieves Pregnancy Discomforts

Masturbation can release endorphins – a natural pain-relieving hormone, which can help reduce pregnancy-related pains and discomforts.

4. Completely Safe

Masturbation removes the risk of sexually transmitted diseases. You can be safe from infections and experience pleasure.

[Read : STDs During Pregnancy]

5. Better Orgasms

Some women even experience better orgasms when they masturbate than having sex. With a surge in hormones, you may experience more intense orgasms sooner.

6. Convenient

Some men may not be comfortable with penetrative sex with their pregnant partners. Having sex during pregnancy can be uncomfortable for many women too. Masturbation can remove such discomforts and you can enjoy your orgasms any time of your choice.

7. Full Control

When you masturbate, you have full control. You can decide on the intensity, duration, method, etc., according to your changing needs. If pregnancy makes it uncomfortable and you want to stop before you orgasm, you can do so in an instant without any need for explanations.

8. Improves Confidence

Many women suffer from body image issues and hormonal fluctuations can make them feel insecure in many ways. Masturbation can release feel-good hormones and can make the woman experience sexual empowerment, thus increasing her confidence. 

Are There Any Side Effects of Masturbation?

Are There Any Side Effects Of Masturbation_

Orgasms cause contractions in the uterus. When you are in the final weeks of pregnancy, you may experience Braxton-hicks contractions, which is nothing but false labor. They are less painful than real contractions but can be very uncomfortable. For some women, these contractions may be light and for some, it can be quite intense.

Masturbation in the last weeks of pregnancy can increase such contractions and make it very uncomfortable for you. The time you take to recover from these contractions can become longer, thus increasing your anxiety too. 

So, in addition to all those feel-good hormones, you may also experience an increase in discomfort and anxiety, due to masturbation in the final weeks of your pregnancy.

[Read : How To Identify Braxton-Hick Contractions?]

What Are the Risks of Masturbation During Pregnancy?

Masturbation can cause some strong orgasms, which can lead to uterine contractions. If you already have complications in pregnancy, contractions can increase the risk and discomfort. It can even affect the pregnancy, leading to a miscarriage or bleeding in pregnancy. This is why it is important to check with your doctor and ensure sexual activity during pregnancy is safe for you.

Another risk in masturbation arises when you use sex toys. If you share your sex toys, it can easily transfer infections from the other person to you – the pregnant you. It is not safe to get any infections during pregnancy, as it is not easy to treat or cure them without using strong medicines. 

What Are the Precautions to Take While Masturbating?

What Are The Precautions To Take While Masturbating_

While masturbating during pregnancy is safe, you need to take the following precautions. One should always be very careful throughout their pregnancy. 

  • Always listen to your body and make necessary adjustments or changes
  • Keep your sex toys clean. Always wash or clean them well.
  • Stop masturbating if you notice any fluid leakage or vaginal bleeding
  • Do not do it if it doesn’t feel good or right for you.

When Should You Avoid Masturbation During Pregnancy?

Masturbation during pregnancy is not a good idea if you have any of the following conditions

1. Incompetent Cervix

Cervical incompetency means your cervix can dilate prematurely during pregnancy. It can increase the risk of preterm delivery or even lead to a miscarriage. So, masturbation may not be safe in this condition.

2. Preterm Labor in the Past

If you had preterm labor in the past, your doctor might want you to be extra careful and reduce all possible risks during this pregnancy. As a precaution, many doctors can advise against masturbation or sex during pregnancy.

3. Water Leakage

Water leakage can worsen due to contractions. Orgasms can lead to strong contractions, which can cause more amniotic fluid to leak and even lead to the rupture of the membrane and trigger labor.

4. Placenta Previa

If you have a low-lying placenta, the doctor will advise against any form of sexual activity. In risky cases, doctors will even advise full bed rest.

[Read : Placenta Previa]

5. Vaginal Bleeding

Implantation bleeding is common. However, if you are bleeding after your first trimester, your doctor will ask you to avoid masturbation as well as penetrative sex, to reduce the risk of a miscarriage. 

Masturbation during pregnancy can be very beneficial if it is a safe pregnancy. You can give in to your increasing libido, and experience pleasure and intense orgasms without any worry or discomfort. Remember, you need to listen to your body very closely when pregnant. Anytime masturbation feels uncomfortable or painful, you should stop immediately. 


1. Can Masturbation Harm the Unborn Baby?

No, your baby is well protected behind multiple layers in the womb. Masturbation and orgasm can only cause contractions but cannot hurt the baby.

2. Can Experiencing Orgasm Cause a Miscarriage?

No, orgasms can stimulate contractions, which can feel intense. They cannot cause a miscarriage unless you are in a high-risk pregnancy category or if your doctor has warned you against masturbation or sex.

Read Also: 8 Reasons Why You Should Abstain From Sex During Pregnancy

Ambili Kartha,B. Sc Zoology (St Xavier’s college for women)

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