Sexual Wellness

Is Period Sex Good or Bad?

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By Apollo 24|7, Published on - 19 December 2022, Updated on - 18 March 2023

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The idea of having sex during one's period can sometimes come across as repulsive and revolting, especially considering the taboo that has surrounded it for generations. The real question then, is to ask "Is it healthy to have sex during periods?", “Is it safe”?

The answer is yes. However, there are a few precautions that you must take care of as a couple.

Read on as this blog discusses women's experiences with period sex, the advantages of engaging in period sex, and, last but not least, some helpful guidelines to adhere to.

Women’s Views on Period Sex

A study reveals that 58% of women enjoy having period sex while close to 10%  find it repulsive.

This is a direct reflection of how every woman and her cycle can be different. While some may feel more aroused and interested in sexual activities during the menstrual period, a substantial chunk of yet others may find it painful and repulsive.

With so much of hormonal fluctuations, comfort, and consent in place, it is imperative to listen to your body and only then proceed with what feels best.

Is Period Blood Unhygienic?

No. Rationally, no matter if the blood comes out of the vagina or any other body part, it is still the same- arterial blood. It is the same blood that nurtures your body and may flow out at times either due to a wound or menstrual cycle. And unless you already suffer a blood-borne disease, this blood is as healthy outside as it was inside your body.

However, yes, the menstrual discharge may look, feel or smell different simply because of a little science. Let's get to the basics. Menstruation discharge largely composes of 3 elements-

1. Blood

This is the same as the arterial blood present in any other part of the body. If this was toxic, you wouldn't have survived when it was inside your body too! However, yes it can appear thinner and darker at times.

This is because menstrual blood is a comparatively watered-down version of your arterial blood and may look darker at times when the blood takes slightly longer to leave the uterus and get oxidised. Nonetheless, no cause for alarm.

2. Endometrial Fluid + Tissues

At times, period blood may look thicker with tiny chunks of blood and tissue. This is primarily because of the shredded endometrial fluid and tissues pushed out along with the menstrual blood. However, this is nothing to worry about.

Your endometrial lining is one of the cleanest and healthiest things in your body as this is the very base that nurtures a baby.

3. Cervical and Vaginal Mucus and Microbes

This is largely the reason why the period blood may feel smelly. The flora of the vagina is such that it has a very distinct, peculiar smell of its own. And while this is true on all days, the smell substantially increases during menstruation, giving it a slightly pungent odour.

However, this is no flag to worry about. This happens only because the regular microbes and bacteria living in the vagina tend to fester faster in a moist environment. Nevertheless, this can be easily tackled by washing the area more frequently and maintaining standard hygiene.

Remember, it is just water and electrolytes such as sodium and potassium. And while the smell is different and unique, it is neither dirty nor toxic.

Did You Know?

In a survey of 500 adults between the ages of 18 and 50, health professionals found that 82% of women have intercourse while they are experiencing their period.

Is Period Sex Safe?

Yes. However, period blood has the potential to transmit diseases such as HIV, hepatitis, and other STIs faster. You are also equally at risk of unintended pregnancy.

Therefore, ensure that you always wear protection, thoroughly clean your genitals and change your bedsheet and towels immediately after the act.

Benefits of Sex During Periods

Because of the shedding of the uterine line that occurs during periods, a woman will have cramping in her abdominal region.

In certain research, it was observed that women who had painful conditions such as menstrual cramps or abdominal cramps benefited from having sex. Also, the pain of PMS can also be relieved by engaging in some satisfying orgasmic activity.

Feel-good hormones like oxytocin, dopamine, and endorphins (our body's natural painkillers) are released during an orgasmic experience, reducing the discomfort of period cramps and bloating.

Moreover, the contraction that occurs alongside an orgasmic release of oxytocin to relieve cramps also aids in the rapid removal of the uterine lining, hence shorter periods!

Did You Know?

The surge of hormones that occurs during a period might make it more satisfying to experience an orgasmic response to physical contact or sexual intercourse.

4 Tips For Period Sex

While period sex is absolutely harmless, it is always wise to be safe and follow certain precautions. To list down, here are a few safety tips

  1. Wash your genitals thoroughly with plain water before engaging in sex
  2. Remove tampons or menstrual cups before engaging in sex
  3. Use protection (latex condoms)
  4. Pee after sex

Final Note

If you are on your period and want to engage in sexual activity with your partner, you shouldn't let the period blood get in the way of your sex life. Instead, try to find a means to clean up the blood after the activity.

Small neglect during period sex might take a heavy toll on your genital health. 

Got any questions or queries? Speak with one of our gynaecologists right away!


Consult a Gynaecologist Now


Medically Reviewed by Dr. Dhanunjay Reddy B

Sexual Wellness

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