Sexual Aspects of Labour and Birth

Woet L. Gianotten*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter/Conference proceedingChapterAcademic

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Childbirth can be experienced in many different ways. The physiological delivery is, for some women, painful and devastating. For other women, however, it can be an overwhelming sensual or nearly erotic experience that closely can resemble an orgasm. After all, delivery, orgasm and breastfeeding are similar processes, all strongly associated with oxytocin. That makes oxytocin one of the potential factors when couples look for a way to influence labour proactively. The chapter will pay attention to various aspects of physical—sexual stimuli that could affect the start of labour and its continuation. It will also describe several ways of dealing with pain and how the culture and the medical culture influence those processes. The first delivery is not only a physical process but also a significant life event, influencing the bonding between the partners towards parenthood. This chapter also looks into the partner’s role and how to navigate through this process optimally. This chapter is part of ‘Midwifery and Sexuality’, a Springer Nature open-access textbook for midwives and related healthcare professionals.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMidwifery and Sexuality
PublisherSpringer International Publishing AG
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)9783031184321
ISBN (Print)9783031184314
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s). 2023.


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