You don’t have to live with Dyspareunia (pain with sex). At Well Medical Arts we can help eliminate some of the more common causes and bring your sex back to life.

Dyspareunia is defined as painful sexual intercourse due to medical or psychological causes. The pain can primarily be on the external surface of the genitalia, or deeper in the pelvis upon deep pressure against the cervix. It can affect a small portion of the vulva or vagina or be felt all over the surface. Understanding the duration, location, and nature of the pain is important in identifying the causes of the pain and determining the right course of treatment. Commonly symptoms of dyspareunia may begin to occur after menopause when estrogen levels start to fall. This drop in estrogen levels can result in dryness and thinning of the vaginal tissues which leads to painful intercourse.

17% – 45% of postmenopausal women say they find sex painful. 

The cause

Women who experience pain with attempted intercourse describe their pain in many ways. This reflects how many different and overlapping causes there are for dyspareunia. The location, nature, and time course of the pain help to understand potential causes and treatments. Some women describe superficial pain at the opening of the vagina or surface of the genitalia when penetration is initiated. Other women feel deeper pain in the vault of the vagina or deep within the pelvis upon deeper penetration. Some women feel pain in more than one of these places. Determining whether the pain is more superficial, deep, mental or physical is important in understanding the root cause of the problem and developing a treatment plan.

Numerous physical, psychological, and social or relationship causes can contribute to pain during sexual encounters. Commonly, multiple underlying causes contribute to the pain. The pain can be acquired or congenital. Diagnosis is typically done by physical examination and a review of  ones medical history. We find the underlying causes to determine treatment. Many women experience relief when physical causes are identified and treated. Even when the pain can be reproduced during a physical examination, doctor and patient must acknowledge the possible role of psychological factors in either causing or maintaining the pain.

The treatments

For postmenopausal women suffering from pain with sex we have seen great results with a combination of Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy and vaginal rejuvenation lasers, this treats painful symptoms immediately and treats the cause ultimately.

BHRT (Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy)
We test hormone levels to determine which hormone replacement is needed for optimal balance. Typically many more symptoms than the dyspareunia are treated such as: mental fogginess, fatigue., insomnia., weight gain, irritability,  decreased libido, hot flashes and night sweats. BHRT treats the physical cause of dyspareunia. Any treatment that does not include BHRT will not treat the physical causes of dyspareunia. Learn more about BHRT and the symptoms this treatment can relieve here. 

VAGINAL REJUVENATION LASER
Due to the decline in estrogen in postmenopausal women the genito urinary tissue has atrophied. This makes the tissue delicate and tender causing the main physical manifestation of dyspareunia. Vaginal rejuvenation lasers help to rebuild collagen and strengthen the tissue in the external and internal genitalia. A series of 3 treatments are recommended for optimal results. Many women experience relief after their first treatment. Vaginal rejuvenation lasers and the O-Shot also treat urinary stress incontinence by building up the anterior vaginal wall. After vaginal rejuvenation treatments women are so pleased at how quickly they can resume a normal healthy sex life.

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Natural Remedies

Dyspareunia is commonly observed in premenopausal and menopausal phases of a woman’s fertility cycle. Emotional and psychological factors often result in low sexual arousal and physical discomfort. Some natural remedies that are valuable in the treatment dyspareunia are listed below:

  • Yoga: A five-minute yoga session involving a stretching session prior to an intercourse can offer a lot of physical relaxation. Practicing yoga on a regular basis can help in strengthening up your muscles and removing the tightness of muscles that can cause the pain associated with dyspareunia. Yoga can also decrease your stress levels and boost your self-image and self-confidence.
  • Ayurveda: Ayurveda is an alternate system of medicines that focusses on removing impurities from our system to reduce the symptoms of a disease. Vaginal drying can be reduced by the use of herbal lubricants. Natural estrogen creams are often advocated for alleviating menopausal symptoms.
  • Using Natural Oils: The use of natural oils such as olive oil, baby oil, and petroleum jelly are often prescribed for alleviating the symptoms of dyspareunia. Since oil has a tendency of trapping moisture and keeping the skin elastic, more and more women prefer to use it as a sexual lubricant.
  • Use of Water-Soluble Lubricants: Water-soluble lubricants or creams that are rich in estrogen can help in curing the pain associated with dyspareunia. Water-based lubricants can help reduce the friction caused by penetration. This in turn reduces the amount of pain normally felt during a sexual encounter.
  • Modifying Sexual Technique: Dyspareunia can also be treated by modifying your sexual technique. You can try increasing the amount of foreplay and delay penetration so as to maximize arousal. This will help in lubricating the vagina and decrease the pain associated with penetration. Trying alternative sexual positions can also help in limiting the pain associated with an intercourse.
  • Use of Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicines: Chinese herbal medicines and acupuncture too have been found to be effective in curing the symptoms of dyspareunia. Doctors often recommend desensitization therapy involving vaginal relaxation techniques for reducing the pain felt during sex.
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