Health and Wellness

Understanding Dyspareunia and Women’s Health

Dyspareunia is a condition where pain occurs during sexual intercourse. Dyspareunia refers to painful sex. It affects women more often than men.

Dyspareunia and Women’s Health

Dyspareunia meaning, pain during intercourse. It can be caused by a variety of reasons, such as local infection, hormonal changes with ageing, or an allergy caused by the use of personal care products.

What are the causes of dyspareunia?

Lets know about each of the common dyspareunia causes
  • Tipped or re-troverted uterus: Some women with a tipped uterus experience pain during intercourse. The penis may hit the cervix or uterus during sex, causing pain. This condition is known as collision dyspareunia.
  • Endometriosis: The endometrium, which is the tissue lining the uterus, may grow outside the uterus, causing deep pain during sex.
  • Infection: Bacterial or yeast infections may cause pain during intercourse.
  • Vulvodynia: This is a condition in which the vulva becomes sensitive and tender to the touch.
  • Drugs: Common drugs used for allergy, high blood pressure, or depression may affect the amount of vaginal lubrication, sexual arousal, and desire. Dry vagina results in pain during intercourse.
  • Physical problems: An abdominal surgery or a scar during delivery can cause a lot of pain during intercourse.
  • Pelvic floor myalgia: Involuntary contractions of the pelvic muscles can cause difficult and uncomfortable sex.
  • Emotional issues: Sometimes, experiences such as sexual abuse or other psychological problems can be a cause of pain during sex

What are the Symptoms of Dyspareunia?

The pain may feel sharp, burning, or like menstrual cramps. Pain during sex may feel like it is coming from deep inside the pelvis. Women often report the feeling that something is being bumped into inside them.

Dyspareunia Diagnosis

How to diagnose dyspareunia? During a visit with your doctor, he or she will ask you to describe your pain, where it is located, and when it began. They may also ask you to describe what you have tried in the past to relieve the pain. For example:

  • Have you tried a sexual lubricant or more foreplay?
  • Is it painful every time you try to have sex?
  • Are there other problems associated with sex?

Your doctor may want to examine your genital area or perform a pelvic exam. During a pelvic exam, your doctor may apply a cotton-tipped swab to the area around the vagina to see if it is painful. Your doctor will examine your vagina and cervix using a tool called a speculum. This helps the doctor gently open the area for the exam. It is like the way you get a Pap smear.

For some women, this part of the exam may be painful. Your doctor may use a smaller speculum to decrease the discomfort. Your doctor may also delay the exam until the pain has decreased. It is important to let your doctor know if the exam becomes too painful.

During the last part of the exam, your doctor will feel your uterus and ovaries with one hand on the abdomen and finger (s) in your vagina. This is like exams performed during a pelvic exam.

If your symptoms and exam suggest an infection, your doctor may take a sample from your vagina or cervix to send to the lab. A urine test is another test. Your doctor may order a pelvic sonogram, CT (computed tomography), or X-ray test to look inside your pelvis.

What is the treatment for dyspareunia?

Dyspareunia treatment – The treatment options may depend upon the results of the pelvic examination and other diagnostic tests. The various treatment options include:

  • A changed position with a tipped uterus may allow the uterus to move away, resulting in more comfortable intercourse.
  • In case of infections, medications may be given either orally or as vaginal pessaries.
  • If the problem is caused by insufficient lubrication of the vagina, cream or jelly may reduce the pain.
  • Relaxation exercises may help regain control over vaginal muscles. This may help in reducing pain during sexual intercourse.
  • If the diagnostic tests determine that a tipped uterus or endometriosis may be responsible for the pain, surgery may be suggested.

Painful Intercourse Home Remedies

Living with dyspareunia may be physically uncomfortable. However, it may affect your sexual relationship as well. Expecting pain during sex may cause you to avoid it. It may change the type of birth control you use (which may or may not be convenient for you). You and your partner might minimize pain with a few changes to your sexual routine:

  • Change positions. If you have sharp pain during thrusting, try unique positions, such as being on top. In this position, you might regulate penetration to a depth that feels good to you.
  • Communication. Talk about what feels good and what doesn’t. If you need your partner to go slow, say so.
  • Don’t rush. Longer foreplay can help stimulate your natural lubrication. You might reduce pain by delaying penetration until you feel fully aroused.
  • Use lubricants. A personal lubricant can make sex more comfortable. Try different brands until you find one you like.

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