Difficulty with Penetration (Vaginismus)

What is Vaginsimus?
Vaginsimus describes the condition where a woman experiences an involuntary spasm of the pelvic floor muscles, especially affecting the entrance to the vagina. It usually occurs when some form of penetration of the vagina is attempted, and can be so strong as to almost close off the entrance, making penetration painful or even impossible.

It is a surprisingly common condition and the causes are usually psychological. It is also very responsive to treatment. One of the main causes is fear or anticipation of pain. When painful penetration has been experienced e.g. as the result of an infection, lack of arousal or poor lubrication, this pain may be expected in further activity although the original cause of the pain has been cured. This fear may be enough to cause some degree of vaginismus. This may then confirm the expectation when pain is experienced because of the vaginismus. The degree of vaginismus may then increase, and a vicious circle is established.

It may be caused by other past experiences such as the trauma of rape, sexual assault or sexual abuse.   A difficult childbirth or surgery may cause a link with vaginal pain. The attitudes towards sex are also well known to be important.

If you consider sex to be e.g. “wicked” or “dirty” you might find yourself involuntarily resisting it even in what might be socially acceptable circumstances such as marriage. This is thought to be one of the main reasons for unconsummated marriage.

Don’t put up with this condition as psycho-sexual counselling or therapy is likely to prove successful. You should feel confident in talking this over with your doctor or nurse, who will arrange for the appropriate treatment for you.

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  1. Painful Sex