Menstrual Health

In Defense of Having Sex When You’re on Your Period

Erin Magner

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Photo: Stocksy/Clique Images
To get busy during your period or not—it’s a question that doesn’t exactly inspire lukewarm feelings either way.

On one side are those who swear the menstrual phase is the hottest time of the month to get laid. And in the other camp: a subset of women who would rather swear off avocado toast than deal with scrubbing blood stains out of their linens. But according to Sarah D’Andrea—a sex educator for new menstrual disc brand Flex, who spoke about the topic at the recent Cycles + Sex conference in Los Angeles—the benefits of an early-cycle romp may be worth setting aside any squeamishness for.

To be clear, she says, you don’t need to involve a partner to reap the benefits of period sex if that idea freaks you out. In this case, it’s the climax that counts. “An orgasm releases so many pleasure hormones,” D'Andrea points out, noting that these feel-good chemicals can be an antidote to menstrual mood swings, insomnia, cramping, and headaches.

The hormones released during orgasm can be an antidote to menstrual mood swings, insomnia, cramping, and headaches.

Many women also reportedly experience shorter periods when they get busy during that time, although D'Andrea says there’s not really any clinical research to back this up. Why? “Sometimes the muscle contraction that can happen during orgasm [helps] release the uterine lining,” D’Andrea suggests.

And as if those perks weren’t enough, women who do opt for penetrative sex may find that “menstrual blood is a great lubricant,” says D’Andrea. "A lot of people don’t have as much arousal lubrication as they want. If you're having your period, that’s just extra fluid in your genitals that will make it a little bit slipperier." (Especially cool considering the not-so-clean nature of many synthetic lubes.)

BRB, going to stock up on some dark bedding.

Originally posted November 28, 2017, updated July 30, 2018. 

Speaking of sex's health benefits, how much intimate time do you actually need to be having in order for these good-for-you effects to kick in? And here are 5 yoga moves to give your sex life a boost.

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