Vaginismus is a condition a lot of people seem not to have heard of, which is surprising because a lot of women struggle with it. What are the Causes, Symptoms & Treatments for Vaginismus?
Here’s everything you need to know about it. READ BELOW
1. What is vaginismus?
Vaginismus is a condition that involves INVOLUNTARY contraction of the vaginal muscles when vaginal penetration is attempted. The contractions can prevent sexual intercourse or make it very painful.
The INVOLUNTARY muscle spasm that is characteristic of Vaginismus is the body’s automatic way of protection against penetration especially when it has come to associate Vaginal penetration with pain.
A good way to understand the involuntary spasming of the vaginal muscles characterized by Vaginismus is to try putting your finger in your eyes and notice the automatic blinking response.
Even knowing that you wouldn’t harm yourself, your body automatically protects you by blinking to protect your eyes. The same principle applies to Vaginismus.
2. How do I know I have vaginismus?
The leading sign of vaginismus is painful sex and is often the first indication of a problem.
Many women describe the pain like the penis has run into a block.
Other Common Symptoms to look out for are:
- Inability to take a penis into the vagina
- Inability to insert a tampon, sex toy or device
- Fear or pain associated with sexual activity
- Pain during pelvic exams.
3. Is this condition peculiar to only virgins?
The answer is simply NO. Vaginismus can happen to virgins and women who have had vaginal penetration before. Vaginismus is classified into two;
Primary vaginismus: when vaginal penetration has never been achieved. (This is mostly the case of virgins)
Secondary vaginismus: when vaginal penetration has been achieved at some point but is no longer possible(this is where women who have previously had any form of vaginal penetration fall).
4. What are the causes of vaginismus?
Vaginismus has been linked to past sexual abuse or trauma, history of sexual pain, emotional factors, etc. In some cases, no direct cause can be found.
To make a diagnosis, your doctor will carry out a physical exam and ask about your medical and sexual history. Your history can give clues to the underlying cause of Vaginismus.
5. Is Vaginismus treatable ?
Vaginismus is a highly treatable condition but it is important that you are patient with your body in the course of treatment.
Here are some treatments for Vaginismus.
Vagina dilators. A technique to relax the muscles in the vagina involves using a set of vaginal dilators. These are smooth, penis-shaped cones of gradually increasing size and length, which can be used in the privacy of your own home.
The smallest one is inserted first, using a lubricant. Once you feel comfortable inserting the smallest, you gradually proceed through the sizes.
Relaxation techniques. Relaxation exercises such as breathing exercises are very helpful for resolving Vaginismus especially learning how to relax the pelvic floor muscles.
Sex therapy and counseling. A Sex therapist will help you work through underlying issues that may be the reason for Vaginismus, as well as, teach you techniques to retrain your body/ vagina to receive penetration.
The therapist may offer you counseling to address any underlying psychological issues (such as fear or anxiety).
If you struggle with Vaginismus, you don’t have to suffer in silence anymore.
Click the HERE to start your Therapy journey.