Keeping the Spark: 4 Tips for Intimacy After Childbirth
Many couples struggle with keeping that romantic flame going after childbirth. Around 86% of couples report a drop in sexual activity after having kids. Approximately 1 in 10 new moms experience postpartum depression and of those couples whose partners have postpartum depression, 1 in 4 new dads also have postpartum depression. (Check out the graphic below for more statistics!) Since August is National Romance Awareness Month, we have partnered with our friends at Hims, a personal wellness brand with a focus on education and men’s personal health, to discuss some of the ways that couples can combat this issue, and keep the romantic flame burning!
Often times couples see a decrease in their sex life after children because they have a difficult time planning the right moment. When both are able to agree on a time and make sure that all other obligations are taken care of, the chances will increase drastically! Although it may seem to take the spontaneity out of the act, it can be very helpful for new parents to plan it out. Between balancing all that life throws at you, and now a new family member, romance can easily get lost! Also, research has shown that planned sex can lead to more impromptu sexual activity after time.
Men- Confidence is extremely important when it comes to sex. With nearly 40% of men reporting some form of erectile dysfunction by the age of 40, it’s no surprise that confidence can be a major issue. After the birth of a child most men will have some loss in their libido, which will increase the chance of erectile dysfunction. Erectile dysfunction can be caused from a lack blood flow, but there are options for men who have this problem. Sildenafil is a great option for men who might be suffering from erectile dysfunction, and can be a huge help in regaining that confidence!
Women- It’s a widely known fact that having a baby changes everything. No matter how many books you read about life after giving birth, you can never fully prepare for the love and joy you will feel toward your baby as well as the tiredness, and change in overall body confidence. Many things happen to a woman’s body during and right after having a baby including physical, hormonal and emotional changes. It can take time — even years — to find confidence in the new normal and feel good about oneself again. Remember, you can be as sexy as you want to be but first you have to feel it. Train your mind to be kind to yourself and make positive changes to help your body and mind heal. Be sure to sleep as much as you can, eat healthy, and be mindful to take time and appreciate all that your body just did. Taking time to reconnect with your partner emotionally and physically can also boost your overall confidence.
After giving birth, women experience completely normal hormone changes, which can make getting back in sheets a sensitive topic. New and breastfeeding moms have a drop in estrogen, which can decrease libido for women and contribute to vaginal dryness. Openly discussing these body changes and any discomfort with your partner is vital when getting back to intimacy after childbirth. Adequate foreplay and using a pH-balanced, water-based personal lubricant such as SYLK for added ease and comfort can alleviate some of the stressors/uncomfortableness of getting back to sex after childbirth. On top of that, there is nothing wrong with communicating each other’s desires and intimate needs. With the increasing demands of children, work, and the household, it’s perfectly okay to voice your needs and desires in a calm, effective manner.
We get it. 6+ weeks is a long time to not be intimate with your partner. Unnecessary pressure and expectations can set in but it’s important to remember to relax, flirt, and HAVE FUN! Yes, your new lives with children can be hectic and exhausting but taking a few minutes throughout the day to let your significant other know that you are thinking of them can remind both of you that you are present as a parent and as a partner. Intimacy is greater than just sex. It’s about being close and feeling connected, with sex being a component of intimacy. Leave thoughtful notes for each other, spend 15-20 minutes of alone time just cuddling, giving a massage, and just being close. At the end of the day, remember to relax, have fun, and truly enjoy each other.
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