Characteristics of dyspareunia
Sex is usually one of the most pleasant moments of life. However, there are a number of situations that make this source of pleasure an unpleasant and even painful experience. Medically speaking, a painfully sexual intercourse is called dyspareunia. Although it especially affects women, it can also take place in men.
Why does pain appear during sexual intercourse?
The causes that can cause vaginal pain during intercourse are multiple and probably reflects physical factors (vaginal infections, cysts, endometriosis, vaginal dryness, lesions in the vagina, vaginitis, etc. (For more information on these items see the listing above).
In many occasions psychological factors can produce fear of sex that results in a series of physical responses that prevent penetration. Vaginismus is one of the main reasons that causes pain and makes sex in a reprehensible act by the woman who suffers it . In many cases this condition is not due to natural causes but psychic ones (bad sexual experiences, very rigid education, personal problems, etc)
Other times pain or discomfort occur as a result of vaginal irritation due to many causes. For example, some medications can cause vaginal dryness. Some women react badly to certain condoms, spermicides, contraceptive creams, soaps, bath salts and some other hygiene products . These products can cause vaginal irritation and make intercourse a painful act.
Perhaps it will be enough to leave these products for a few days to stop experiencing discomfort. Sometimes they must be replaced by others that are not irritating. Therefore, a woman suffering discomfort in the penetration should consider this possibility.
Seek help from a specialist
When you suffer from severe pain or when you have tried different strategies to eliminate minor discomforts and these have not been effective, when the pain in intercourse becomes something habitual in your relationship, it is important for you to consult your doctor to rule out any physical problems that can cause it or apply the appropriate treatment.
Other times it will be necessary to see a psychologist, sexologist or therapist so that you can solve problems that have a psychological origin.
How to reduce pain during sexual intercourse?
A series of advice or strategies could be considered to help to diminish the pain during sex. Among all of them, the most interesting could be the following:
- Extending the preliminaries of love: The origin of many cases of pain on penetration is the lack of vaginal lubrication. The preliminaries of love are intended to increase lubrication. Before intercourse, it is necessary that the couple share kisses, caresses and other expressions of love prior to penetration, increasing excitement and providing a smoother penetration.
Women who usually experience discomfort during intercourse, should leave penetration to the end and, if this act is too unpleasant, they should resort to manual or oral sex to reach orgasm without penetration. It is important that both women and men reach orgasm. Not ending a relationship can influence the couple's sex life by associating it with an experience of dissatisfaction or displeasure.
- Using lubricants: Even with prolonged preliminaries and much dedication, some women experience vaginal dryness -usually too high- which causes discomfort or pain. This is especially true in the menopause or breastfeeding, when it is normal for women to experience a special vaginal dryness. If a woman suspects of lack of lubrication, she should use some lubricant. There are many of these products sold in pharmacies, supermarkets or specialty stores. We recommend those that dissolve in water. Vaseline is not recommended because it can dry out the vagina and cause infections and, if combined with a condom, it can break it.
Natural lubricants are recommended, with a pH similar to that of the vagina, having a proper length, non-staining and very easy to wash. There are commercially available gels that fulfill these requirements. For those couples who wish to use household products, olive oil or sesame oil are two excellent lubricants at hand.
- Changing position:
A change of position can facilitate penetration. It is important that your partner experiences different changes of position in order to find the one that's most convenient. This experimentation also involves a change in sexual routine and becomes a more creative and exciting act.
Each couple can invent new positions according to their imagination and possibilities. However, there are many manuals on the market that can help fill gaps for those less imaginative couples. A mutual reading of one of the chapters can be a challenging preamble.
- Reduce the tension: As mentioned above, many vaginal pain problems are due to involuntary contraction of vaginal muscles or vaginismus. In many cases this condition is due to psychological reasons, because women feel conscious or unconscious fear of penetration. Any action that lowers stress can help improve it.
It is important for couples to maintain a good communication, speaking on the topic and expressing their doubts or fears. This will help them feel better and will reduce stress. A relaxing bath before lovemaking can be very useful.
Relaxing exercises for the muscles of the vagina
The relaxation of the vaginal muscles are very important for the treatment of vaginitis, no matter of the origin of this disorder. These exercises help eliminate involuntary contractions and facilitate intercourse.
More information on the natural treatment of sex pain in the listing above.