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Painful sex or Dyspareunia


Today, we are going to discuss some common issues related to Painful Sex or Dyspareunia

Question 1. What is painful sex or Dyspareunia?

Answer: Painful sex or intercourse pain is also termed as Dyspareunia, it sometimes causes problems in a couple’s sexual relationship.

Question 2. What causes painful sex in women?

Answer: Painful sex occurs because of

  • Vaginal dryness
  • Fear of intimacy
  • History of sexual abuse

Other reasons of painful sex in women are:

  • Uncontrolled spasm in vaginal muscles, due to fear of pain
  • Intercourse immediately after child birth
  • Infections in vagina like yeast infections
  • Infection at cervix (Opening of Uterus)
  • Cyst on ovaries
  • Fibroids in Uterus
  • Pregnancy (Ectopic Pregnancy in which fertilized egg develops outside uterus)
  • Certain illnesses like Hemorrhoids, Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
  • Stress, anxiety, depression about physical appearance

Question 3. What are the symptoms?

Answer: Women experiences pain which could be deep burning/aching/throbbing, with every penetration and it lasts for hours after intercourse.

Question 4. How is Dyspareunia diagnosed?


  • The doctor will investigate about your medical history, sexual history, surgical history and previous child birth experiences
  • After taking history, there will be a pelvic examination to look at the possibility of any skin infection or inflammation
  • Sometimes, a visual exam of vagina using instrument is also done
  • Rarely, a pelvic ultrasound is suggested to rule out any anatomical defect

Question 5. How can painful sex be treated?

Answer: Treatment can be done, based on the cause of pain:-

  • In case of infection/inflammation, medications can be prescribed
  • Keeping vagina lubricated by applying water based lubricants
  • Waiting for six weeks after childbirth to prevent painful sex after pregnancy
  • Using estrogen creams during early menopause phase
  • Taking oral drugs to increase vaginal lubrication
  • Exercising or taking therapies for vaginal relaxation
  • Counseling or sex therapy for resolving physical and mental pain
  • Changing lifestyle
  • Changing sexual routine can help minimize pain, sometimes changing position helps. It is important to communicate to your partner, during sexual activity

Question 6. Do I need to worry?

Answer: No, painful sex is a common problem but it is important to talk to your doctor about it. In case of burning, discharge, or if there is any genital lesion, you should report to your doctor immediately.

Painful sex or Dyspareunia is a common problem but it is important to talk to your doctor about it

We at Dr. Safe Hands are always available to address any questions/issues you have regarding your sex life. We are on a mission to help everyone lead a happy and healthy sexual life.