Is it normal that your body changes after losing your virginity?
An individual's first experience of sexual intercourse, or popularly "losing virginity", represents a memorable and significant transition from one life stage to another. This act involves both a physical and emotional aspect and may therefore create confusion as to what kind of changes is a person going to experience and what is "normal" to feel. SteadyHealth members were wondering the same.
Is it normal that your body changes after losing your virginity?
Many participants reported having feelings and emotions that are not usual for them or that the timing of the emotions does not match the occasion.
It was weird for me being so emotional cause I don't even usually PMS.
I lost my virginity a few days ago and have been having period symptoms since then (bloating, eating more, feeling fat and tired).
Physical changes after the first sexual experience were also described, notably stomach bloating and breast size increase. Bloating was reported in the abdominal area, while breast sizes were said to go up to two sizes. Besides these, discussion participants noted other symptoms that may be present, such as:
- weight gain (especially on the stomach, thighs, and hips)
- delayed menstrual cycle
- firm and sensitive nipples
- pain in the breasts
- heavier period
- vaginal discharge
- loss of appetite
- water retention
The first occurrence of symptoms varied for discussion participants from one day to a couple of weeks. For some people, the symptoms would subside or completely disappear after the beginning of the menstrual cycle.
People dealing with this problem described using birth control methods such as condoms or contraceptive pills thus reducing the possibility of pregnancy. On the other side, less safe and reliable birth control methods were reported as well, most notably coitus interruptus (the withdrawal or pull-out method), or no protection at all.
What do the experts say?
Experts agree with popular media and culture that most adolescents view their first sexual encounter as a transition from one state to another. It is generally perceived as a milestone to maturity or adulthood. Even though adolescents tend to engage in other non-coital behaviors like kissing, genital-touching, and oral sex, the majority will subjectively consider intercourse as "real sex" or the loss of virginity.
Body image, as an important component of a person's overall well-being, is associated with sexual behavior. As research suggests, physical attractiveness is seen as very important for women, which may cause them to be more conscious about their appearance and how other people view them. Self-objectification usually leads to dissatisfaction with one's physical appearance and regular body monitoring. Therefore, it is reasonable to suggest that engaging in sexual behavior causes women to be more self-conscious and start paying more attention to their bodies' flaws or start noticing them more.
A person's body does not change after the first sexual intercourse or the second, third and so on. What does happen is attributed to the physiological reactions related to sexual arousal. These may include:
- swollen vulva
- rapid breathing
- flushed skin
- breast size increase
Sexual arousal in women has four stages of physical response.
Stage 1: Sexual excitement or arousal
During this stage, increased blood flow occurs in the vaginal walls resulting in vasocongestion — the vulva (including the clitoris, vaginal opening, and inner and outer lips or labia) swell due to the increased blood flow. Your blood pressure rises and your breathing and pulse speed up. Blood vessels are enlarged causing you to flush, especially on the neck and chest.
Stage 2: Sexual plateau
There may be an increase in a woman's breast size up to 25 percent during this stage. The areola (the area around the nipple) also experiences increased blood flow thus making the nipple look less erect.
Stage 3: Orgasm
The sexual tension that has built up during the previous stages is released in the form of an orgasm. An orgasm is an intense and pleasurable release marked by contractions of the genital muscles.
Stage 4: Sexual resolution
This is where your body returns to its usual state. The swelling is reduced and heart rate and breathing slow down.
Engaging in sexual activity can result in pregnancy. The effectiveness of birth control methods varies and there is no "best" method for every woman. Using a more effective birth control method reduces your chances of getting pregnant but one should keep in mind that even the most effective birth control methods can fail.
One study reported that the withdrawal method was the most common choice among the youngest women. Twenrty-two out of 100 women using the withdrawal method during their first year of typical use ended up getting pregnant.
Missing one, two or more consecutive menstrual periods is the most common or obvious signs of pregnancy. However, period omission does not always mean a woman is pregnant. Depending on the woman, pregnancy symptoms and their timing vary. Some signs of early pregnancy may include:
- spotting or slight bleeding
- tender/swollen breasts or nipples
- nausea and/or vomiting
- frequent urination
- food cravings or aversions
- mood swings
Menstrual irregularities can be caused by many different things. Conditions like polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), diabetes, certain medicines, birth control pills, stress or eating disorders can alter periods, therefore, missing one is not always a sign that a woman is pregnant. The best way to confirm pregnancy or any other condition is to consult a doctor.
Symptoms users reported
- But I was moody and emotional about 3 weeks ago.
- I feel lazy also, but I've been known to be lazy every now and then.
- Symptoms after were basically feeling exhausted and fat.
- I lost mine two days ago now, and I feel really tired and run down.
- The day right after I felt sick.
Users reported some additional signs
- Now I am late with second period after having sex.
- I feel bloated, tired, my breasts hurt and I'm extremely moody.
- I had sex with my boyfriend like a week ago, but now my body has changed a bit: my breasts are getting a bit bigger and harder and i feel more fat (like i hold more water in my body).
- these are all symptoms that I usually have before I have my period, but my period is in 2 weeks from now.
- My breast seem to be bigger.
- Honestly, my first thought after reading this isn't that your body has really physically changed after losing your virginity, but that you're either in love with the person you had sex with or are just more self conscious about your body, knowing that someone will be seeing it naked!
- Some people also feel like sex is a rite of passage in a way, and they might feel more mature and womanly or manly after losing their virginity.
- I thought I was pregnant because I had those exact symptoms so I took 3 tests and they all came back negative.
- This that is happening to you is normal it's something that every woman will go through in their lives.
- I was afraid that I might have been pregnant so i took the test, and nothing showed up!