There’s no reason why you should have to skip out on a week of sex just because you’re bleeding. In fact, having sex during your period specifically is good for you and might even cause some dreaded period symptoms like cramps and migraines to ease up a little. We’ve put together a guide to some of the most frequently asked period sex questions around.
Can you have sex on your period?
Yep! As long as you and your partner are both clear of any STIs including HIV and down (most people aren’t grossed out by having sex on period, so don’t feel self-conscious), it’s totally fine! Just remember to always practice safe sex , as you can still get pregnant and get STIs if you have sex during your period. In fact, there are lots of benefits to having period sex specifically (see below.)
How do I have period sex?
The same way you have any other kind of sex! Just make sure you’ve removed your tampon or menstrual cup and get crackin’. Lay down a dark towel if you don’t want to stain your sheets (it also makes for easier cleanup) or try having sex in the shower so you can wash away any blood as it comes out.
Do I have to remove my tampon during sex?
Absolutely. First things first, you’ll want to remove your tampon if you’re wearing one. Keeping a tampon in during sex is a very bad idea, as any penetration (from fingers, penises, toys, anything) can actually move the tampon up further inside you. It can’t get “lost” (there’s nowhere for it to go -- your vagina doesn’t just lead up into the rest of your internal organs), but it can make it difficult to remove. You never want to have a tampon inside you for more than eight hours, so if you’re approaching that time limit and you can’t for the life of you get the bloody thing out (sorry), head to an urgent care center, a doctor, or an ER to get some professional help. No shame girl, they’ve definitely seen way worse.
Is it safe to have sex on my period?
If you’re still practicing safe sex (using a condom, getting tested regularly), then yes, period sex and having sex during your period is just as safe as sex when it’s not your time of the month.
Is period sex gross?
Having sex during your period is not any grosser than any other kind of sex. Period blood is a bodily fluid, and I hate to break it to you, but there are a lot of other bodily fluids already involved during sex even when you’re not on your period. If it really bothers you, you can try having shower sex to minimize any mess.
Can you get pregnant on your period?
Yes, you can get pregnant any time of the month. You may have heard urban legend that you can’t get pregnant if you have sex on your period, but that’s simply not true. While you’re at a lower risk of getting pregnant if you have sex on your period vs having sex when ovulating (your most fertile time of month), it’s still possible.
The likelihood is likely to be even greater for those with irregular cycles, as they might confuse spotting for their period, and wind up having sex during a time when they’re actually pretty fertile. With this in mind, this is why you shouldn’t have unprotected sex on your period. Your period isn’t a get-out-of-jail-free-card when it comes to birth control and safe sex, unfortunately. And STIs are still a risk for sex during your period as much as when you’re not menstruating.
Are there any benefits to having sex on your period?
So many! For starters, free lube (Buh-bye trusty bottle in my nightstand! See you in a week.), not to mention the myriad of legit, health benefits linked to sex and periods. Having period sex can actually help with period cramps, migraine relief, increased sex drive, and even possibly shorter periods. Knowing all this, isn’t it a bummer that society has raised women to think that sex during your period isn’t an automatic given?
What are the risk factors of having sex on your period?
Besides mess (and depending on you and your partner’s comfortability, it doesn’t have to be a “risk” at all), having sex during your period has the same risks of pregnancy and STIs as sex when you’re not on your period, so as always, use proper protection.