SEX TALK WITH BABALWA
Q IS IT TOO LATE TO FALL PREGNANT?
I am a 44-year-old married woman with two boys aged 19 and 16, and I am planning to have another baby. I am using contraceptive pills and I am worried about the risk of high blood pressure and other health risks. Is it okay to try or is it too late? ANONYMOUS, PRETORIA
AThe first thing you need to do is to stop taking the pill. But it is important that you finish the entire pack, but don’t start another one. Even if you stop taking the pill, your periods might not go back to normal immediately. As women grow older, their fertility declines. The rate of miscarriages increases, there are chances of having an ectopic pregnancy (a pregnancy located outside the inner lining of the uterus), bleeding, stillborns, chromosomal abnormalities leading to Down Syndrome, high blood problems and sometimes eclampsia (a condition that causes seizures during pregnancy). However, there are advantages; having a child when you are older removes a lot of emotional problems as you are more matured. Please do not forget to involve your other children once you are pregnant and let them be part of the journey.
Q SEX HURTS
My boyfriend and I have been together for five months. Once he is erect, he wants to penetrate me before I am ready and this makes sex a little painful. He neglects foreplay and this ruins the moment. I’ve tried talking to him about it, but nothing has changed. ANONYMOUS, MATATIELE
ATalk to him about the issue and make him understand what happens when he penetrates you with or without protection. The pain might be due to the fact that your vulva and private part are not well lubricated when he penetrates you and get lubricated as you go along. Even though you might not feel the pain, you will most probably have bruises that might make you prone to infection. Consider using water-based lubricants, especially if you are using condoms. Dry sex also increases the risk of condom breakage. You partner’s manhood might get bruised and have small cuts, which will increase chances of contracting any condition or disease that can be contracted via bodily fluids.
Q CHANGE IN MENSTRUAL CYCLE
I’m 25 years old and haven’t been sexually active for eight months. My problem is that my menstrual cycle is not like it used to be. I tested negative for pregnancy and went to the clinic a few times for a check-up, but couldn’t get any answers. ANONYMOUS, KWAMHLANGA
AAbout a third of women experience this during their childbearing years. Sex might and does have an effect on the menstrual cycle. This is due to the fact that there are hormonal changes that occur during sex and can affect your menstrual cycle. Sex should not have a significant change in your cycle though; the changes can be delays or early menstruation by at least a day or so. As you have tested negative for pregnancy, this may be a sign of other conditions. If the clinic cannot assist, please ask them to refer you to a hospital.
Dr Babalwa Funda kaMabhoza is an educational sexologist and businesswoman. She is a member of the South African Sexual Health Association (SASHA) and African Society for Sexual Medicine (ASSM).