Myths persist – but here’s what you need to know if you’re bleeding after anal sex.
Anal sex can be an integral part of a sexual relationship, but not all couples do it – however, there’s a lot of wrong information out there about bottoming.
Bleeding after anal sex can be just ‘one of those things’ and can happen on your first go round or your 100th – so to put your mind and butt at rest, here’s why it happens.
Tiny rips happen
Your rectum is not self-lubricating, so unless you’re using lube, you’re going to be creating a lot of friction, which can cause the lining of the rectum to tear or rip a little, if this sounds hideous, it might be worth noting that most of these rips are tiny – and can actually happen outside of sex as well. These rips can cause bleeds – and most probably you’ve had bleeds but never realised it.
It happens because the lining of your rectum is not as strong as your normal skin.
Also, anal sex could also be causing what is known as an anal fissure. Anal fissures are tiny rips that can happen both on the inside and on and around your actual hole – especially if you’re not relaxed or have not loosened yourself up before the main event. These can heal all by themselves within a few weeks.
The P Word…
Another issue is the dreaded P word – yes piles.
Bleeds may be caused by popping a pile or if we’re going to be medical about it, haemorrhoids. Piles are completely normal and are the enlargement of a blood vessel that already exists inside your butt. You might not even know you have one until it pops during sex.
Some people have visible piles on the outside of the anus, whilst some have them on the inside.
There’s no evidence to show that having anal sex causes piles but it can inflame the issue.
Jose Perez de la Cruz from THT told us, “So long as the piles are not actively bleeding or painful at the time on intercourse then it is probably safe to have sex. If they are bleeding or there is inflammation though this means that the natural protective barrier formed by the skin and mucous membranes is not at its optimum which if exposed to an STI can make transmission more likely”.
“So long as the piles are not actively bleeding or painful at the time on intercourse then it is probably safe to have sex. If they are bleeding or there is inflammation though this means that the natural protective barrier formed by the skin and mucous membranes is not at its optimum which is exposed to an STI can make transmission more likely”.
When should I seek help?
If you are experiencing a lot of pain or prolonged aching after sex you might need to seek medical help. It is normal for there to be some discomfort for a day after, especially after your first time. However, if pain continues you should go and see your GP or book yourself into a sexual health clinic.
If there is a lot of blood (think steady drip rather than a bit of spotting on your toilet paper) you should go and see your doc ASAP.
Dr Shawn Khodadadian, a board-certified gastroenterologist in Manhattan, is cautioning people against ignoring rectal bleeding. He warns that rectal bleeding could be a sign of other, far more serious illness such as colorectal or colon cancer. He said,
“as there are many possible causes and getting an early diagnosis is particularly important. This is because although rectal bleeding can be a symptom of haemorrhoids, colitis or anal fissures, it can also be a sign of a far more serious illness for example colorectal or colon cancer. These types of cancers can often be completely cured when detected early.”
You’re gonna need lube and lots of it
So the best way to stop the friction is to use lube a lot of it. You can find out about the different types of lube here. If you’re having a long session – they don’t forget to keep reapplying the lube or use a silicone-based lube, which should last a lot longer.
Remember, despite what you see in gay porn, you can just ram it in. You need to take your time, use lube and go an inch at a time!
Good luck and have fun!
The editor and chief of THEGAYUK.