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A Little Known Health Benefit Of Sperm During Pregnancy

Having lots of pregnant sex with the dude who knocked you up might just lower your risk for getting preeclampsia. Before I get into it I just want to say:  If you don’t want to have a ton of sex while you’re pregnant, you’re not alone. If you do want to have sex, here’s an very vague, somewhat theoretical reason to be extra excited about it.

Preeclampsia is a condition that sometimes develops after 20 weeks of pregnancy. It’s characterized by high blood pressure and increased protein in the urine. The only way to “cure” preeclampsia is to have the baby.  No one really understands the mechanism behind this uncommon, but not rare, condition–it’s thought to be related to the mother’s immunological response to the father’s genes in utero. I once read that it’s kind of like mom has an allergic reaction to the developing baby. This is one reason prenatal care is so important and why we’re grateful for ways to get the baby out quickly via labor induction or cesarean.

So what’s up with the sperm?
According to some research pulled together by Gad Saad, Ph.D. for Psychology Today, mom might develop a better tolerance of dad’s genes if she’s exposed to his antigens via blood transfusion or, more conveniently in most cases, sperm. The sperm does it’s magic if it’s delivered via intercourse or oral sex, with swallowing, of course.

Do what you want. I’m just saying….

This is all very theoretical, so don’t feel pressured to do a darn thing. I’ve never read that generous portions of semen prevent preeclampsia on the various medical websites I’ve consulted, but I can see the possible connection. Sex– so long as you’re both in the mood for it– is good for you and good for your health in many ways. And if it’s not your thing this very pregnant minute, give yourself some time. It’s normal and it doesn’t mean you’re going to become preeclamptic. Maybe eat some chocolate instead, which is another fun way to (maybe, possibly, theoretically) reduce the likelihood of preeclampsia.

 

 

photo: quinn.anya/flickr

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