Pain during intercourse in Female: Causes and its Treatment in India
Is sex more painful than exciting for you? Do you have a discomforting experience rather than a pleasurable one during sexual intercourse? This means you are suffering from dyspareunia. Not only women but men also suffer from pain during sexual intercourse. But rather than keeping this as a hush-hush problem, you must talk with your partner regarding the same.
Painful sexual intercourse, also termed as dyspareunia, is the pain in the vagina which can be persistent and recurrent while having intercourse. At times the pain might arise when a woman is having intercourse for the first time or when she is not fully aroused which may be due to dryness and pain in the vagina.
What Can Cause This Pain?
The pain during sex can be due to physical factors, psychological factors or both. You can have pain at the entry of the vagina or deep inside it.
Entry pain due to physical causes
You can feel pain in the vulva during intercourse which can be due to vaginal dryness, vaginismus, injury to the genitals, etc.
- Vaginal dryness– When you are sexually aroused, glands near the vulva (the external part of the vagina) secrete fluids that lubricate the vagina. This allows the penis to enter the vagina easily. Hence, little fluid can lead to painful intercourse. The lack of secretion of lubrication can be due to lack of foreplay, a decrease in estrogen level due to menopause or childbirth or medications such as antidepressants, antihistamines and birth control pills.
- Vaginismus- This is the involuntary contraction of the pelvic floor muscles which can lead to painful sex. The reasons could be medical factors, emotional factors or both. The symptom can range from mild to severe. You can also feel pain while inserting a tampon or during an examination.
- Genital injury- Any injury caused by an accident, surgery of the pelvis or any trauma whatsoever near the genitals can make sex painful.
- Infection or inflammation- Any kind of infection near the vagina such as vaginal yeast infection, urinary tract infection or sexually transmitted infection can also lead to dyspareunia. The inflammation around the vagina can also contribute to painful sex.
- Abnormalities at birth- If you have vaginal agenesis, or have not developed the vagina fully, or have an imperforate hymen then sex can be painful for you.
- Skin orders or irritation- Eczema, lichen planus, lichen sclerosus or other skin problems in the genital region can also cause dyspareunia. Pain can also be caused by clothing, detergents or vaginal hygiene products.
Deep pain due to physical causes
You can feel pain during deep penetration or in some particular area of the reproductive system. This can be due to various medical conditions. Some of them are-
- Cystitis- Inflammation of the urinary bladder wall due to a bacterial infection.
- Endometriosis- The growth of uterine tissues outside the uterus.
- Fibroids- Tumors that grow on the wall of the uterus. These are not non-cancerous.
- Ovarian cysts- The ovary gets filled with a fluid
- Pelvic inflammatory disease- Due to an infection, the reproductive system gets inflamed.
- Prolapsed uterine- The uterus moves out of its original place.
You might be unaware of the fact that emotional as well as psychological factors play an important role in your sexual experience. Some factors that can hamper your sexual pleasure are-
- Sexual arousal can be inhibited by anxiety, fear and depression
- Your pelvic muscles can get tightened which can be triggered by stress
How dyspareunia is diagnosed?
With the help of a combination of the following tests, the pain is diagnosed to understand the location, timing and length of the pain. The doctor utilizes a combination of the following tests-
- Medical history evaluation in which asks various questions about any disorders you may have suffered in the past.
- Pelvic examination is done to check for signs of infection or abnormalities in the structure
- Tests like ultrasound, infection detection, etc.
After you have been diagnosed, it is important you go for the appropriate treatment option.
What should I do to make intercourse pleasurable?
You can try various home remedies so that you don’t feel any pain during sex. This will help you get a smoother sex life with your partner.
- Use water-based lubricants
- Discuss with your partner openly
- Engage in foreplay for a longer time to encourage increased secretion of vaginal fluids
- Maintain good vaginal health by avoiding usage of scented soaps or vaginal sprays
- To strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, try Kegel exercises. These are simple clench-and-release exercises of the pelvic floor muscles.
In the case of infection or inflammation, proper medication can be effective after the doctor’s consultation. To increase lubrication and estrogen levels, you can apply topical estrogen directly to the vagina.
If you have psychological issues that are preventing you from an enjoyable sexual experience, then therapies and counseling can help you.
- Sex therapy- This type of therapy will help you counter the emotional problems so that you can feel comfortable while having sexual intercourse with your partner.
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy-This helps to change negative thoughts and behavior.
Latest Laser Treatment for Vaginal Dryness
You can also opt for the most advanced laser treatment for treating the dryness in your vagina. The laser is aimed at the vaginal tissues which generate heat. This triggers collagen production and hence, elasticity is restored. This can help you make coitus more pleasurable for you. The benefits of this treatment are-
- No cuts or incisions
- Absolutely painless
- Minimal blood loss
- Reduced risk of infection
- Faster recovery
- No post-surgery complication
- Performed within 20 minutes
But if you have bleeding during sex, genital lesions, irregular periods or vaginal discharge then seek medical help immediately.