Here's What to Do After Sex to Make Sure Your Reproductive Health Is 10/10

Photo: Stocksy

Welcome to The V, our weeklong series devoted to all things sex and reproductive health. This is a safe space free from "taboos," because there's no reason anyone should feel awkward talking about their bodies. That said, we'll be clearing up any misinformation on the subject, starting with this huge misnomer: The "V" in this case doesn't refer to the vagina, but the vulva, which is the anatomically correct term for external female genitalia (including the opening of the vagina). Stay tuned all week for need-to-know guides on birth control, tips for taking your orgasm to the next level, real-life stories about endometriosis, and everything in between.

Photo: Original Illustration by Lauren Johnstone

Sex is a complicated subject in so many ways. To borrow a line from my favorite seasonal movie, The Holiday, "Sex makes everything complicated. Even when you don't have it, the not having it makes things complicated." This isn't fully relevant to the topic at hand, but damn, that's a good movie. Conflict, resolution, Jude Law—when December rolls around, give it a watch.

Anyway, aside from the social and emotional complications associated with sex, there's the physical aspect that often gets overlooked. Whether you're with a new partner or a longtime S.O., your post-coital inclination may be to either slip your clothes back on or fall asleep, but according to gynecologists, what you do during this time period is crucial for your reproductive health. To give you some guidance, we've outlined the most important steps to take after sex below.

If you're experiencing any pain or difficulty during sex or have questions about your sexual health, please speak with a doctor.

This post was originally published on August 2, 2017.