Period sex: can I have sex during my period?
Period sex is a subject that isn’t often talked about, so many of us have questions like is period sex safe? Or what are the chances of getting pregnant while on your period? Let’s find out the answers to all of these questions (and more)!
We believe that periods shouldn’t stop you from doing anything that you want to do; be that swimming, exercising or even having sex! Many people don’t talk about having sex while menstruating, but we’re here to banish that taboo and address some of the questions you may have.
In short, of course you can have sex during your period – this includes intimacy with a partner or by yourself! After all, there is nothing dirty or shameful about period blood, periods are just a natural occurrence and sign that your body is functioning healthily. It’s even thought that orgasming can actually help ease the pain of menstrual cramps as well as provide extra lubrication during sex! 
But it’s also totally fine if you simply don’t want to, or don’t feel comfortable having sex during your period too. Ultimately, the choice is always yours whether you want to get it on or not. But if you're unsure, keep reading so that you may make an informed decision based on how you feel and what works best for you!
How to have period sex
We get it, the last thing you want to be worrying about when enjoying an intimate moment is staining your sheets. But just because menstrual blood is messy, it doesn’t mean that it’s a bad thing during sex! After all, sex is supposed to be about enjoying yourself and being in the moment. But if you do want to minimize stains and maybe avoid the urge to do laundry in the middle of a date night, then there are a few things you can do.
The bath towel seems to be a fail-safe option when it comes to period sex – providing a sturdy layer of security between your crisp white sheets and potential blood overflow. Plus they’re easier to throw directly into the wash, as opposed to having to remove and change your entire set of bed linen. It’s also useful to note that a dark colored towel will do a great job of hiding any stains!
Alternatively, there are also certain sex positions that may reduce the amount of blood spilling onto surrounding items. For example, positions which prevent your V-Zone from coming in direct contact with your sheets, sofa (or whatever your chosen surface is!) can limit any possible blood spillage. Another great option for keeping the mess to a minimum could be having sex in the shower – the water will quickly wash away any menstrual blood and prevent any surfaces from being stained too!
Is it safe to have sex on your period?
Just because period sex can be a bit messy, it doesn’t make it any less safe than regular sex! However, you should be mindful that human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs) may be passed on more easily through blood. 
So if you want to protect yourself from STIs then you still need to use a condom, just like you would during any other point of your cycle.
What are the chances of getting pregnant while on your period?
While the chances of getting pregnant during your period may be low, you can in fact get pregnant at any point in your menstrual cycle. Also, sperm can live in your body for up to five days – so just because you’re bleeding, it doesn’t mean you can’t become a mum! 
Of course, there are some days where you are more fertile than others (particularly during ovulation), but if you don’t want to get pregnant, then you should still continue using a method of contraception even when you’re having sex on your period.
Talking about period sex
Whether you choose to have period sex or not is completely personal and up to you, but because of the taboo that surrounds the subject, many of us never even have a conversation about it. Whatever your personal preference, we want to put a stop to the feeling that you can’t talk about period sex or menstruation and encourage people to open up and discuss these topics candidly.
And if you have a partner, then it’s important to check in with them and find out what their preferences and feelings are about period sex – we need to start feeling more comfortable talking about it! After all, you could be missing out of an experience you both want but are too afraid to bring up.
At the end of the day, having sex is your choice – so don’t let your period dictate when and how you can do it! Sex is a great way to let go and enjoy some intimate time with a partner (or by yourself) and a bit of blood shouldn’t change that.
If you want to continue the conversation or have some questions, check out our page on Sex FAQs.
The medical information in this article is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes. Please consult your doctor for guidance about a specific medical condition.
 Whipple B, Komisaruk BR. Elevation of pain threshold by vaginal stimulation in women. Pain. 1985 Apr;21(4):357-367. doi: 10.1016/0304-3959(85)90164-2. PMID: 4000685.