reasons for painful sex
The steamy sex scene is about to pop onto the big screen as you sit there with your girlfriends in the movie theater. But while your friends smile knowingly, you feel angry. Or ashamed. Or embarrassed. Because while everyone else gets to enjoy the dirty deed, you have to suffer. For you, sex hurts… and not in a good way.
There are many causes of painful intercourse. In fact, a University of Michigan study found that one in four women experiences chronic vulvar pain at some point in her life. This type of unexplained pain is called vulvodynia.
Back in 2010, vulvodynia became somewhat of a celebrity condition when Dr. Oz wrote an article about it titled “When Painful Sex is Something Serious.”
According to the National Vulvodynia Association (NVA), vulvodynia has no identifiable cause. A few possibilities might include pelvic floor muscle weakness or spasm, an injury to the area around the vulva or an increase in nerve fiber density in the vulvar area.
Vulvodynia is just one cause of painful intercourse, however.
6 Reasons why sex can hurt
Did you know that painful sex in women has its own medical term? That's right. It's called dyspareunia and can be found in articles from WebMD to the Mayo Clinic. According to Harvard Health Publications, millions of women experience pain before, during or after sex.
Experts agree that painful intercourse can cause many issues besides physical discomfort: problems in your relationship, low self-esteem and poor body image. It can also dry up your sexual desire.
Can sex feel good again?
Visit these websites for additional resources on dealing with painful sex:
That depends on your condition. Talk to your doctor about treatment options, as they may vary for different conditions. The ACOG makes a few suggestions to help improve your sex life:
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