Painful Intercourse

Intercourse can become painful for women, especially during and after menopause. The good news, it’s highly treatable.

What is Painful Intercourse?

As women enter menopause, their estrogen levels decrease causing the vagina to become dry. This can lead to pain during intercourse. It also can occur in younger women. Typically, the wall of the vagina is thick and moist. But if you have vaginal dryness, the tissue instead is thin and dry, causing intercourse to become painful.


What causes Painful Intercourse?

The loss of vaginal moisture is common, especially as women age. Possible causes include:

  • Breastfeeding
  • Infection
  • Inflammatory skin conditions
  • Menopause
  • Muscle spasms
  • Some medications
  • Trauma

What symptoms are associated with Painful Intercourse?

In addition to pain during intercourse, you might also experience:

  • Burning in the pelvis
  • Frequent urination
  • Itching in the pelvis
  • Spotting
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Vaginal discharge

How is Painful Intercourse diagnosed?

Your doctor will examine your pelvis, specifically your vagina and cervix, to look for signs of thin, dry tissue on your vaginal walls.

How is Painful Intercourse treated?

First, avoid the following:

  • Bath soaps, bubble baths, lotions, bath salts, especially those that contain perfumes.
  • Feminine hygiene sprays and perfumes.
  • Tight-fitting clothing.

In addition, your physician may recommend:

  • Topical estrogen applied to vagina.
  • Vaginal moisturizer or lubricant.
  • Vaginal relaxation exercises.
  • Counseling or sex therapy.
  • Mona Lisa Touch® Laser Therapy is clinically proven to relieve vaginal dryness due to a decline in estrogen levels. Available at our Redeem Sexual Wellness and Aesthetics Center.


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