According to health experts, having sexual intercourse while a woman is observing her menstrual period is unsafe due to some health risks.
According to the experts, the act puts partners at risk of contracting HIV, gonorrhea, hepatitis, and other sexually transmitted infections.
According to them, vaginal sexual intercourse with a menstruating woman may result in an increase in the flow of menstrual blood because the uterine veins are congested and prone to rupture, and thus easily damaged.
Solomon Avidime, a professor of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, believes that having sex during menstruation is not a good idea because it can be messy.
According to Avidime, it also puts partners at risk of various sexually transmitted infections.
“The risk of contracting sexually-transmitted diseases is high during sexual intercourse when the woman is menstruating. It is high in both women and men.
“HIV infection can occur as a negative consequence of sexual intercourse during menses. The risk of contracting gonorrhea and hepatitis is high. So, for the purposes of infection, it is not safe to engage in sex with a woman during her menstruation.”
Menstruation, also known as a period, is the bleeding that occurs when the endometrium sheds 12 to 16 days after ovulation, according to the online portal American Pregnancy. You cannot ovulate while on your period, according to this definition.
However, some women may mistake mid-cycle or ovulatory bleeding (bleeding that occurs around ovulation) for a period.
“This can happen to women with very irregular cycles coming once every three months or two to three times in one month.
“Mid-cycle bleeding can occur in women with regular cycles as well. They may experience what appears to be a period, but, in reality, this is most likely ovulatory bleeding. Ovulation can occur when you experience mid-cycle or ovulatory bleeding.
“Keep in mind that while you cannot technically ovulate while on a period because sperm can live in the body for three to five days after sex, pregnancy could occur from intercourse that takes place during a period.”
When asked if a woman could ovulate during her menstrual flow or get pregnant at such a period, Avidime said it is remotely possible for a woman to get pregnant during her monthly period if she engages in sexual intercourse.
He said this is especially common among women that have shorter cycles like 21 days or less.He, however, said that ovulation does not occur during menses.
According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, most women experience a 28-day menstrual cycle.
“This cycle lasts from the first day of menstrual bleeding to the day before bleeding begins the following month.
“The length of the cycle varies between individuals, but is usually between 26 and 32 days long, with 28 days being the average.
“The most fertile time of the menstrual cycle is between days eight and 19,” ACOG said.
This is even as online portal, MedicineNet, states that sperm can survive in a woman’s reproductive system for up to five days, whether the woman is menstruating or not.
Also, a Consultant Family Physician and Head of Department, Family Medicine Department, University of Ilorin, Kwara State, Dr. Ibrahim Kuranga-Suleiman, notes that it is not hygienically good to have sex during menstruation.