You should know that vulvodynia, dyspareunia and other perineal pain today affect nearly 15% of women during their lifetime. And these sometimes unbearable pains have the effect of deeply affecting their physical, emotional and relational space.
Painful sex – in the vulva or vagina – during sex, or even all the time, is a condition that affects many women.
However, very little is said about these conditions, which still remain a taboo. And a lot of women are lost and don’t know where to find help… a little review of testimonials and some links to move forward with this problem.
Definitions: vaginismus, vulvodynia, vestibulodynia
Vaginismus, a contraction that prevents penetration, is very well treated
It is a reflex, involuntary contraction of the muscles of the pelvic floor, which occurs when an attempt is made to insert an object into the vagina. No penetration is possible, either during sex, or during a pelvic examination.
We are talking about vaginismus primary if it has always been the case, and vaginismus secondary if this pathology appeared after an event.
Vaginismus is not a disease, but a sexual disorder. It has a very favorable prognosis for recovery: vaginismus is generally treated very well.
“The fear of pain is the first symptom among these women who very often suffer from a lack of information about their own gender and its representation. They think, for example, that they have a vagina that is too small to accommodate a penis. Misconceptions that activate anxiety, even panic fear of penetration. ”
Dr Véronique Bonniaud
Vaginismus: solutions to put an end to this sexual disorder
Education, knowledge of your body and physical exercises
The therapy consists first of all in education to get to know your body better. Indeed, many misconceptions (such as fear of having a vagina too small to accommodate a penis) can lead to fear of pain, vaginismus, and the impossibility of penetration.
Then, through adapted and progressive physical exercises, the patient can better understand her body (and to come out of the infernal cycle of pain> apprehension> tension> pain) until accepting penetration.
As for vestibulodynia, perineal education can sometimes be adapted, it will be done by a midwife or a specialized physiotherapist.
Note: in a couple, vaginismus can often be related to the sexuality of the partner (whether it is simply an ignorance of sexuality, or a lack of assertiveness, or a sexual disorder such as an erectile dysfunction or premature ejaculation. ).
And whatever the order of appearance: one plays on the other and vice versa. And we can of course imagine that this inability to make love can damage the self-esteem and libido of both partners. It may be interesting to consider couples therapy with a sex therapist to soften these relational aspects.
Vestibulodynie : pain as soon as you touch the entrance to the vagina
Vestibulodynia is severe pain, such as a burning or tearing, caused by pressure entering the vagina. Especially during sexual penetration, but not only (insertion of a tampon, gynecological examination, but also riding or cycling)
It causes pain during intercourse (dyspareunia), which often becomes impossible. But it can also be expressed on other occasions when something presses on the vulva.
The main diagnostic test is to simply touch the vulva with a cotton swab – if it is painful, the affection is there.
Vestibulodynia may affect up to one in 10 women according to some studies.
If vestibulodynia causes difficulty in reaching orgasm, it is above all the apprehension of the sexual act that can ultimately cause desire disorders.
Testimonials & personal blogs
A very good blog: My Vestibulodynia and I, which will give you access to numerous testimonials, advice and information on vestibulodynia and vulvodynia.
Some episodes of audio podcasts that evoke these pathologies:
• Justine, who testifies to her vaginismus in the podcast The Pastille
• Viviane, 25, talks about her journey with vaginismus in First and last time
• Marie sans filter, who tells of vestibulodynia – she also wrote an article where she explains more his discovery of his vestibulodynia.
• Shonah, which speaks of vestibulodynia in the Cher Corps podcast
On the MadMoizelle website, three testimonials from women on vestibulodynia and dispareunia, as well as on Kombini a testimonial on vestibulodyine (of a woman who has found a satisfactory sexuality).
Professional links & resources
• The keys of venus
Les Clés de Vénus is an association which brings together women suffering from or having suffered from these pains. There is a lot of information on the site, as well as the possibility of discussing with other women concerned.
As these pathologies are still poorly understood, the association also holds a directory of professionals trained to treat these pains (not updated for a long time).
I have been a member of the Clés de Vénus association since 2021.
On the site of the Francophone Society of Sexual Medicine, a long article on vestibulodynia and possible treatments.
From explanations and treatment options for vestibulodynia on floravi (equipment for women’s sexual health).
A review of the writings concerning the psychoaffective reality of women with vulvodynia: Difficulties encountered and strategies developed
Testimonials and articles for the general public on vestibulodynia
A (mixed) article on WEDemain which discusses ongoing research on the pain-relieving power of the clitoris and masturbation, here in the context of a vestibulodynia
We would love to say thanks to the author of this write-up for this outstanding web content
Vaginismus, vestibulodynia, vulvodynia: intimate pains about which little is said. • My sex blog
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