Even before a woman has given birth, I always go over her options for contraception. If she wants to breastfeed, we talk about which types of birth control are safest and least likely to interfere with milk production. If she knows she wants to use an IUD, we can usually schedule the insertion to take place at the four week postpartum appointment.
The question all women are thinking, even if they’re not asking it, is when can they start having sex again. The general rule is six weeks postpartum, but for many women, that feels way too soon. If a woman feels ready, I tell her to give it a try. But make sure to communicate with your partner—certain positions that were comfortable before childbirth may not be comfortable now.
Plus if you’re breastfeeding, estrogen levels are low, which causes vaginal dryness. I reassure patients that this is normal. I recommend using lubricant, even if you don’t feel like you need it, because if, in the middle of sex it starts to feel uncomfortable, you may not want to try it again.
For women who’ve had C-sections, certain positions or movements are going to feel really weird for a while. My advice is to start slow and keep communication lines open. Don’t be afraid to let your partner know what feels comfortable—and what doesn’t—and take it from there.