If you grew up in a religious and/or restrictive household, chances are good that, somewhere along the way, you heard some pretty strange ideas about sex. Specifically, what might happen to you after having it. You know, like, being smote by a rogue lightning bolt conventiently right after having premarital sex for the first time. Or going blind after masturbating. (Which isn’t the same as having sex, obviously, but related to it.) Or having sex and then getting pregnant. And dying.
Obviously, none of those things are actually going to happen to you. Still, there are some pretty weird. potentially scary things that can happen to you after having sex. They aren’t due to the wrath of God, obviously–I am almost certain that a bolt of lightning is not going come through your ceiling and smite you in bed, should you decide to have sex–and they are also, for the most part, pretty rare. Chances are good that if you have sex, and follow all of the necessary precautions for it (consent, protection, lubrication, etc.) your experience should be a good one. Still, it is interesting, if nothing else, to know about what might happen after having sex. So, check out these scary things that can happen to you after having sex:
Memory LossIf you have really great sex--some mind-blowing sex, if you will--this can actually cause something called "transient global amnesia," which is a condition that causes sudden memory loss. Researchers aren't sure what causes it, why it only affects people for such a specific amount of time (patients with this condition usually lose their past 24 hours of memory and feel hazy on the details of recent memories). The good news? This is both extremely rare--it only affects three to five out of 100,000 people--and temporary. So, if this happens to you (which it probably won't) don't get too worried. I mean, I guess you won't be that worried, since you won't remember to be worried. So, uh, you're fine. Image source: iStock
Cramping After An OrgasmOrgasming during sex is usually (always?) thought of as being a good thing. But in some situations, it's actually not so great--vaginal orgasms cause the uterus to contract, which can sometimes lead to painful cramps after sex, which are triggered by the contractions in the uterus. If this happens to you every now and then, don't worry about it--it should go away after a few minutes. But if you find that you always feel crampy after sex, and the pain lasts for a few hours, you might want to see a doctor, since this is a sign of endometriosis. Image source: iStock
Rug Burn On Your VagThis one makes sense, if you think about it--sex involves friction, and usually at least a little bit of pubic hair, and those two things together can cause some irritation. So, if you notice a rash down there after sex, don't freak out right away. It could just be rug burn, which goes away in a day or two. Image source: iStock
DepressionMost people expect to feel totally euphoric after sex. But a lot of people actually experience something called postcoital dysphoria (PCD for short), which basically just means that you experience feelings of anxiety and/or depression after sex. It doesn't matter if the sex was super great or not--if you feel sad, you feel sad. The best thing to do is let your partner know what's going on and ask for a little alone time. Image source: iStock
BleedingIf you've read The Bell Jar, you'll know that there's this really harrowing part in which the main character, Esther, has sex for the first time and basically bleeds out afterwards and has to go to a doctor afterwards to make it stop. (It's a great book! You should read it.) Anyway, here's the good news: Blood loss at that level is extremely rare. Still, bleeding after sex (whether it's your first time or not) canhappen sometimes for a number of reasons--you may have a slight tear when having sex, or have a benign growth, or may have some spotting due to birth control pills. If it's just a little bit of blood, it's probably nothing to worry about. But if it happens more than once, see a doctor just to be safe. Image source: iStock
Yeast InfectionsAre yeast infections scary? I'm inclined to say yes! Anyway, if you have sex with a guy, this can increase your chances of getting a yeast infection, since guys' semen has a higher pH level than the vagina. (This means that penises are basic and vaginas are acidic, if you were wondering.) If you're using condoms (which you should be doing anyway), this shouldn't really be an issue. But if you have an IUD and haven't been using condoms with your partner, just know that you might be slightly more likely to get a yeast infection. Image source: iStock
You Smell...OffNoticing a weird smell down there after sex? Like, a different smell? Don't worry about it. Smelling a little, uh, stronger after sex is pretty common--you're basically taking two different sets of genitals and, uh, mixing them together (whether you're havng sex with a guy or a girl), which means that a new scent can emerge afterwards. Plus, sex can sometimes cause microdermabrasions in the vagina, which, while harmless and more or less painless, can also emit some inflammation-based smells for a few days. Basically, if you feel like you have a weird scent down there after sex, don't freak out (and definitely don't douche or use a heavy-duty vaginal wash, which will make the smell go away temporarily but mess with your vaginal flora). It's natural! It should go away within a day or so. Image source: iStock
Were you surprised by any of these things? Which ones? Let us know in the comments!