Sexual Health During Pregnancy

Dr. Heather Jenkins, MD, discusses sexual health and pregnancy.

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Dr. Heather Jenkins, MD, discusses sexual health and pregnancy.
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Video transcript

Featuring Dr. Heather Jenkins, MD, CCFP

Duration: 1 minute, 35 seconds

Sexual health is very important during your pregnancy.

In the early part of your pregnancy, your care provider, whether it's a doctor or a midwife, will do a series of tests to ensure that you are sexually healthy.

And this involves both testing for infections like chlamydia and gonorrhea, as well as a discussion around herpes, and usually some blood testing around things like HIV. This is routine, and everyone is encouraged to do this.

If later in your pregnancy you're involved with a new partner, everybody is also encouraged to protect yourself and use condoms so that you don't become infected with any of these infections. And that's important because this can impact both your health and the health of your baby.

Additionally there's specific treatment that you can take at the end of your pregnancy, under the recommendation of your physician, to help prevent the possibilities of a herpes outbreak around the time of your birth. And this is often quite helpful to reduce the possibility of spreading this infection to your child.

It's often quite common after sexual intercourse for women to have a small amount of bleeding, and this can be a source of concern. Usually this is a bright red blood or if it's delayed the next day it can be actually darker brown type of blood. And this type of bleeding is usually quite normal in the context of a healthy pregnancy.

If you have questions about sexual health during pregnancy, or sexual health, you should ask your physician or your midwife about it.

Presenter: Dr. Heather Jenkins, Family Doctor, Vancouver, BC

Local Practitioners: Family Doctor

This content is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.