By Dr. Sudhir Bhola, Sexology
Pain during sex is relatively common; more so in women than in men. Approximately 3 out of 4 women suffer from mild to moderate pain during sex. The reasons may be varied. Sometimes, it can be simple and harmless like the lack of arousal or lack of lubrication. But sometimes, it might indicate a more severe underlying issue such as a cancerous growth.
- Vaginal pain may be caused due to vaginitis or the inflammation of the vaginal walls caused by yeast or other inflections.
- Vulvar Vestibulitis Syndrome which is related to the pain confined to the vestibular area can also be another possible cause of pain during sexual intercourse.
- Hormonal changes within the body or childbirth can be probable reasons behind pain during sexual intercourse as well.
- The pain can easily be avoided by using enough lubrication or trying other things to facilitate the arousal, if the reason behind the pain is lack of arousal.
- If at all the underlying reason is a particular disease or infection, appropriate steps must be taken for proper diagnosis. To find out for sure, pelvic exam, ultrasound or laparoscopy would be appropriate to discover the exact underlying cause.
- Sexual intercourse should be avoided till the pain subsides. Applying ice or gel can be a used to relieve the burn or pain after sex. A visit to the gynecologist is definitely advised before taking any such step.
Note: Although uncommon in men, pain might be caused due to friction during sex. It may also be caused by the inflammation of the penis head or the prostate gland. These reasons often lead to pain during ejaculation. Although applying ice pack and abstinence are suggested, a proper visit to a sexologist would ensure a permanent solution to the problem.