Dyspareunia: What is it & What Does it Mean For Me?

If you are a woman who suffers from genital pain during (or after) sexual intercourse, then you could have a condition named Dyspareunia. Such painful intercourse may be felt internally in the pelvis, uterus or vagina; or externally on the vulva [1]. If you’re experiencing recurrent symptoms, be sure to contact a Pain Specialist at the Vulvodynia Pain Clinic for an online or in-person consultation & Holistic Personalised Treatment Plan

Do You Experience Any of These Symptoms During Intercourse?

•Pain on penetration (sexual entry)
•Deep pain at the time of thrusting
•Pain with every type of penetration (such as inserting a tampon)
•Aching or burning pain
•Throbbing which carries on for hours, post-intercourse [1]

The Knock-On Effect of Suffering From Dyspareunia

“Emotions are deeply intertwined with sexual activity & may play a role in sexual pain. Initial pain can lead to fear of recurring pain, making it difficult to relax, which can lead to even more pain. You might start avoiding sex if you associate it with the pain” [1]

There is a strong emotional factor linked to dyspareunia. This incorporates:

•Psychological problems: such as feeling depressed, anxiety, worries related to physical appearance, and concerns about relationship or intimacy issues, can lead to pain or discomfort from low level sexual arousal
•Stress: when we are stressed, our pelvic floor muscles are inclined to tense up. This can add to painful intercourse
•Previous Sexual Abuse: this could play a role in dyspareunia [1].

Do You Experience Deep Pain?

This is quite common when you have deep penetration, and certain positions can make it worse. There are also a number of contributors. These include:

•Various conditions and illnesses such as: ovarian cysts, haemorrhoids, adenomyosis, pelvic floor dysfunction, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), endometriosis, cystitis, uterine fibroids, retroverted uterus, uterine prolapse, and pelvic inflammatory disease
•Certain medical treatments (e.g., chemotherapy and radiation), and surgeries, e.g., pelvic surgery scarring (such as that caused by a hysterectomy), can make intercourse painful [1].

Seeing a Vulvodynia Pain Specialist

If you are experiencing recurrent pain during sexual intercourse, then don’t delay getting an expert dyspareunia diagnosis, as you your situation could get worse, and generate more emotional and physical issues. Taking positive action, and having the problem and root cause treated by a renowned Vulvodynia doctor, who is likely to use a multi-treatment approach, will boost your self-image, bolster your emotional intimacy, and rev up your sex life [1].


[1]. Mayo Clinic (N.d.). “Painful intercourse (dyspareunia).”