Platelets are an essential factor that causes the body to clot properly. They are also called thrombocytes and are manufactured in the bone marrow like the other components of the blood. They are shaped like disk when at rest, but release their tentacles to clump together and form a clot on the wounded area.
These elements appear as dark purple particles on a stained blood smear. They are 20% smaller than the red blood cells. A healthy body should have 150,000 to 450,000 platelets per microliter of blood. Platelet count lower than this range can be accompanied with complications and other symptoms that indicate a serious health problem.
Often, a low platelet count doesn’t show signs. It can only be detected through a blood testing to check the level of platelets that your body has. The person who does not undergo some diagnostic tests will only know that this problem is present when he experiences various symptoms such as easy bruising, red spots in the skin, spotting, nosebleeds, and other signs of bleeding.
You are eligible for a platelet transfusion if your platelet count decreases to 10,000 platelets per microliter of blood. This procedure is essential to replace the lost platelets and normalize the blood clotting of the body again.
Is having sex safe when your platelet count is low?
Having sex is still safe when you have 50,000 platelets per microliter present in your body. However, it is crucial to monitor this level and find ways to increase it. Take note that sex is an activity that can cause bleeding if the blood count is lower than 50,000.
Although you have reached the threshold, you still need to perform this activity gently. Using a water-based lubricant can help prevent dryness of the vagina. Certain complications can be avoided as long as your platelet count doesn’t get lesser than the mentioned threshold. Avoid anal sex because it can cause bleeding.
If you are diagnosed with cancer or leukemia, you are also prone to low platelet count. It happens due to the chemotherapy treatment that you are receiving which destroys the cells and bone marrow. Take note that the bone marrow is the part of the body that produces platelets and other blood cells. So, when it gets damaged, it will be difficult for this portion to manufacture sufficient numbers of platelets.
Aside from that, people with anemia can also have limited sexual activity. It is because the person can quickly get tired and he can also lose interest in the intercourse. Your condition can also aggravate the symptoms that can trigger bleeding. It can be devastating to have sex while thinking of the consequences afterward.
Factors affecting couples
Another factor that can also affect your sexual activity when the woman’s immune system is weak. Take note that some underlying causes of low platelet count are antibodies that destroy the body’s cells instead of fighting the antigens. Of course, your platelets are not exempted when it comes to the destruction of cells. As a result, the immune system is weak enough to get rid of the virus that invades the organs.
Therefore, women who have a low platelet count and still want to continue this activity is more prone to developing a vaginal yeast infection. It is a condition that inflames the tissues of this sensitive part. It brings itchy feeling and burning sensation during the sexual intercourse.
Some people who have a low platelet count may also feel pain during sex. The condition will not only affect your physical aspect of life but your mental state as well. You will always have fear beside you even in the middle of intercourse. As a result, you will lose your interest which can also affect your relationship with your partner.
These problems are common among people who still want to satisfy their partners despite their condition. If this is the case, don’t hesitate to seek a doctor’s advice. This issue should not last long. It often occurs within four months after you undergo treatment.
Things to remember
You also need to do some preventative measures to reduce the adverse effect of your condition on your sex life. One of the essential things to do is to use contraceptive pills to prevent pregnancy. The chemotherapy medication can cause congenital disabilities that you will not want to happen. The substance being used to it can be toxic when a fetus is developed most especially when it is the woman who is undergoing the therapy. The treatment can also reduce the sperm count, and you will notice that you have a fewer erection.
Also, avoid anal sex because it can cause lacerations that can lead to bleeding. Be sure to use a condom to prevent the excreted chemo drug from penetrating in the vagina. These methods might be frustrating or unfavorable for some who are not used to it, but these will make you and your partner safe.
Don’t hesitate to talk to your partner about your condition. Be honest when opening your feelings and fears. If possible, you can try other alternatives like planning for your sexual period. It may be best to prepare by taking pain medications or anti-nausea prescribed by your doctor before you start the activity.
If you are feeling weak that time, take your time to relax or take a nap. You can try to start the intercourse when you think you have enough energy. Just avoid rough sex to prevent bleeding. Talk to your partner about sexual positions that will be more comfortable for you to do. It is also crucial to consult your doctor to check if your body has a high enough platelet count. Monitoring it and doing some ways to increase it can motivate you that you will get well.
Sometimes, the pressure to make your partner perform is what makes the sex more devastating. You should learn to understand the situation of your partner. In that way, you can overcome this challenge in the long run.