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HTHGS: Mucus Plug & Sex (written by Dr. Pluhar)

Ask Dr. Pluhar,
I was curious if it is safe to have sex after you have lost your mucous plug when pregnant. Char Soria

Dear Char,
Thanks for the excellent question.  As a quick review, the mucus plug is a thick accumulation of cervical secretions, which forms throughout pregnancy and blocks the cervix (opening to the uterus).  During pregnancy, the mucus plug helps protect the developing fetus by deterring the passage of bacteria into the uterus.  Thus, except for women with certain health conditions (such as risk of premature labor), clinicians generally consider sexual intercourse safe because the fetus is protected by the mucus plug.  After you lose the mucus plug, however, or after the membranes rupture (your "water breaks"), the fetus becomes more vulnerable to infection.  Therefore, it is not considered safe to have penile-vaginal intercourse (or any penetration in the vagina) after the mucus plug is released.  There may be other sexual activities that you and your partner could do at this stage of pregnancy, such as light massage on the external genitals, touching, kissing, or others that do not involve vaginal penetration.  Check with your clinician if you want to be sure, at any stage of pregnancy, what sexual activities would be considered safe for you, your partner, and your developing baby.  

For more information on sexuality, pregnancy, and motherhood, you may wish to check out a wonderful book called "A Mother's Guide to Sex" by Anne Semans and Cathy Winks (Three Rivers Press, 2001).

Best of luck, Dr. Erika Pluhar



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The Founder: "Alex" Caroline Robboy, LCSW, QSW, CAS

Ms. Robboy is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of The Center for Growth Inc and How To Have Good Sex Inc.  Alex practices marriage and family therapy and sex therapy, and also conducts periodic seminars about human sexuality throughout the northeastern United States.

Ms. Robboy graduated from the University of Pennsylvania where she earned a Masters degree in Social Work, a Certificate of Advanced Studies in Human Sexuality Education and a Post-Masters Certificate in Marriage Counseling & Sex Therapy. Through the American Board of Sexology, she is a board certified sexologist and through the American Association of Sex Educators Counselors and Therapists a certified sex therapist.  Additionally, she is a licensed clinical social worker and a member of the American Board of Marriage and Family Therapy.


  Our Philosophy sex is like dancing, it changes every time. It depends on culture, atmosphere and mood. Sometimes it is done alone, with a partner or in a group. It can be fast and hard or slow and soft. Sex is a combination of non-verbal negotiation and verbal cues: a scream, a twitch of the toes, or a flush of the face. There is no one 'right' way to move, only what feels good to all those involved. 
     The purpose of this site is to share information. Thus, if you have any ideas, thoughts or information that you believe others might benefit from, please e-mail your tip to and I  will be sure to include it on either our weekly newsletter or here on the actual website. 

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September 19, 2006