Can I Use a Vibrator While Pregnant?

person holding vibrator

Mikhail Reshetnikov / EyeEm / Getty Images

So many of life’s little luxuries have to be put on hold when you’re pregnant that it can become difficult to know what baby-safe activities you can continue enjoying versus which things you should avoid. And the answer is not always a clear-cut “yes” or “no-go.” One such pleasure you may wonder about is if you can use a vibrator while pregnant.

To help you wade through any confusion on whether or not you can use a vibrator while pregnant, we tapped two experts. Ahead, learn all about when it may be safe—and when it may not—as well as what some benefits could be and certain precautions to take. Read on to discover everything you need to know about using a vibrator while pregnant.

What Is Vibrator?

Vibrators (a.k.a. personal massagers) are types of vibrating sex toys that a person can use to stimulate sensitive areas—like the vagina, clitoris, nipples, anus, penis, or scrotum—to help achieve orgasm. They can be used alone or with a partner and, for some people, may be the easiest (or only) way that they can climax.

You can find vibrators in all shapes, sizes, and colors that are designed for both internal and external use. And they can be especially helpful if you have decreased mobility (ahem, third trimester, we’re looking at you). But the question remains: Can you use a vibrator while pregnant?

Is It Safe To Use a Vibrator During Pregnancy?

When used alone or with a partner, vibrators can provide an intensely pleasurable—and even exhilarating—sexual experience. And, considering that your sex drive may fluctuate while you are pregnant, from a potential decline at the beginning and ramp up during your second trimester to a lowered libido near the end, a vibrator could be put to good use if you need a sexual pick-me-up.

(Fun fact: Some people even experience their first orgasm ever while pregnant.) But, like anything during pregnancy, you’ll want to run it by your healthcare provider first.

“First and foremost, you need to have a discussion with your healthcare provider concerning its use and the type of vibrator utilized,” advises Kecia Gaither, MD, MPH, FACOG, who is double board-certified in OB/GYN and maternal-fetal medicine, and director of perinatal services at NYC Health + Hospitals/Lincoln in NYC. This is because you may have certain complications with your pregnancy that may preclude its use, she adds.

Aside from any complications, such as premature labor or issues with your placenta, vibrators—and sexual intercourse, in general—should be safe while you're pregnant. Your baby is protected by the amniotic fluid they’re floating in, as well as your strong uterine muscles.

“Generally, if you are in good health and don’t have any high-risk issues, such as placenta previa [a blockage of your cervix by the placenta], a short cervix post-surgery, leak amniotic fluid, or have low fluid, etc., [vibrators] are considered safe,” confirms Lisa M. Hartman, MMS, PA-C, a board-certified licensed Physician Associate at Soignez-Vous in NYC.

In addition to making you feel divine, as long as you get the go-ahead from your healthcare provider, a vibrator can provide some excellent benefits—both physically and emotionally.

Every pregnancy is different. Be sure to consult with a healthcare provider about your circumstances if you have any questions about using a vibrator while pregnant.

Benefits of a Vibrator  During Pregnancy 

Aside from the most obvious perk of using a vibrator while pregnant—pleasure—doing so may provide some of the following benefits.

Improved Sleep

You may already be losing sleep as your baby bump grows, and you’ll be losing quite a bit of sleep once your baby arrives—up to 700 hours in their first year! Following an orgasm with a vibrator while pregnant, it might be easier to relax and fall asleep at bedtime.

Increased Sexual Arousal

Using a vibrator while pregnant can increase blood flow in the area it’s being used on. This, in turn, can make you more sensitive, leading to a more intense orgasm and/or better sex.

Better—or First—Orgasm

Revisiting our earlier fun tidbit, vibrators can help you achieve more pleasurable orgasms than you’ve ever experienced—even if you’ve never had one before. One study even found as many as 20% of people climax for the first time in their lives while pregnant.

Enhanced Mood

When you orgasm, your body releases oxytocin, your feel-good hormone, which can make you feel calmer. “Good sexual health leads to good mental health,” explains Hartman. “So, pleasure on."

Less Achy

In the same vein, that happy hormone oxytocin can also make you feel less achy, which can be a welcomed relief from the pregnancy-induced stress your body experiences.

Reduced Symptoms of Some Disorders

Using a vibrator while pregnant can also help relieve the symptoms of certain sexual disrders, such as issues achieving orgasm, hypoactive sexual disorder (no or low sex drive), genital arousal disorder, and erectile dysfunction. It can also help reduce sexual side effects associated with certain medications or health conditions.

Safety Precautions 

Of course, every undertaking while pregnant—even ones that are generally considered safe—comes with certain precautions you should take to be sure no harm comes to you or your baby. And using a vibrator while pregnant is no exception. Discuss any of the below situations with your healthcare provider before using a vibrator while pregnant.

Previous Premature Labor or Miscarriage

If you’ve gone into premature labor during a previous pregnancy or miscarried, it may be best to hold off on using a vibrator until you’re not pregnant. “An orgasm can cause contraction of the uterus,” Hartman cautions. “So, again, in high-risk pregnancies, you may want to be cleared by your OB.”

This is because while oxytocin has benefits, there can also be a drawback in that it can stimulate contractions before your baby is supposed to arrive. When you’ve experienced an issue like that before, it could put you at higher risk.

Vaginal Leaking

Anytime you have a persistent leak from your vagina while pregnant, you should definitely contact your healthcare provider and hold off on using a vibrator—or having sex—until you get their go-ahead. This is because leaking could be a sign that your amniotic sac has ruptured, which can cause an issue with your baby’s health or put you at a higher risk of developing an infection.

Pelvic Congestion

When you’re pregnant, you have nearly 50% more blood than when you weren’t pregnant. So, when you’re aroused, more blood than usual rushes to your pelvis. This can be either an uncomfortable nuisance or pretty painful, and it can take more time to diminish following an orgasm—half an hour to an hour versus five to 10 minutes when you’re not pregnant.

Pain or Bleeding

If one thing is for sure: “Stop [vibrator] usage if you experience bleeding or pain,” recommends Dr. Gaither. “And contact your healthcare provider immediately.” Pregnancy comes with some inevitable discomforts, but pain or bleeding should always be checked out by your healthcare provider. Once they determine the cause, they can let you know if it’s safe to proceed with using a vibrator while pregnant or having sex.

Placenta Previa

One condition that can result in bleeding is the aforementioned placenta previa, where your placenta covers your cervix.

“I, for example, couldn’t have intercourse or use toys in all of my pregnancies because I had placenta previa, which put me at high risk for bleeding,” Hartman shares. “Once my placenta grew, and moved up and out of the way of the cervix, I was cleared for business as usual.” As well as bleeding, using a vibrator while pregnant—especially one intended for internal use—can displace your placenta and result in other issues.

Early Dilation

Typically, your cervix serves as a barrier between your vagina and uterus. However, if your cervix begins to dilate earlier, using an internal vibrator could increase your risk of premature labor.

Infection

Similar to other foreign objects, a vibrator can harbor germs if not cleaned properly in between uses. And, when you’re pregnant, you may be more susceptible to infection. “If you are cleared to use [a vibrator while pregnant], ensure that you keep it and other sex toys clean,” Dr. Gaither says.

Hartman concurs: “[You] want to make sure that your pleasure toys are clean to avoid the risk of bacterial or viral infection." After each use, wash your vibrator with mild soap and water. You can even put a condom on it before you give it a go to help keep it clean as well.

A Word From Verywell

Whether or not you use a vibrator while pregnant is ultimately a choice that should be made between you and your healthcare provider. While there are significant benefits to using one on your own or with a partner, there are some precautions you should take if you’ve had any complications with your pregnancy or a previous one, as well as certain side effects of orgasm.

Above all, get the OK from your healthcare provider first (don’t be embarrassed to ask—that’s what they’re there for), and be sure to practice proper cleanliness to avoid the risk of infection. 

Was this page helpful?
9 Sources
Verywell Family uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Planned Parenthood. Sex Toys.

  2. NCT. Sex In Trimester One, Two & Three of Pregnancy.

  3. Mayo Clinic. Sex During Pregnancy: What’s OK, What’s Not.

  4. Mayo Clinic. Placenta Previa.

  5. Cleveland Clinic. Sex During Pregnancy: Your Questions Answered.

  6. RMC Health System. The Truth About Pregnancy Brain.

  7. Polomeno V. (2000). Sex and Pregnancy: A Perinatal Educator's Guide. The Journal of perinatal education, 9(4), 15–27. doi:10.1624/105812400X87879

  8. Planned Parenthood. Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disrder (HSDD).

  9. Merck Manual; Consumer Version. Physical Changes During Pregnancy.