Vaginismus - live and love freely

Have you ever heard of vaginismus? Vaginismus is a significant obstacle and emotional burden for couples trying to conceive and it makes sex extremely difficult for many women. This article aims to provide an overview of the problems caused by vaginismus and possible solutions. At femtis, we want to shed light on this important topic.

What is vaginismus?

For a long time, vaginismus was defined as a mechanical contraction of the pelvic floor muscles. However, this definition has been abandoned as it is too imprecise. Vaginismus means that any form of vaginal penetration, whether with a penis, a finger, or even a tampon, is so uncomfortable and painful that the attempt has to be abandoned. Gynecological treatment can also become a real challenge as it can cause pain.

Vaginismus is not an organically caused condition but a pain disorder that can occur without physical causes. We can all imagine how uncomfortable vaginismus must be. Even if you are full of desire and only want to feel your partner, vaginismus prevents you from having intercourse or any form of vaginal penetration.

But where does this vaginal spasm come from?

Vaginismus is usually not caused by physical factors but is psychosomatic in nature. It is a reaction of the body. However, it is still unclear what triggers such vaginismus. In some cases, it is congenital and occurs during the first sexual intercourse. In other cases, vaginismus develops later in life, and the initial experiences with sexual intercourse were not painful. It can occur after medical treatments of the reproductive system, and there can also be triggers in childhood and adolescence that become stronger over time. In general, vaginismus can even appear out of nowhere, although these cases are extremely rare.

How to overcome vaginismus

Although vaginismus in many cases has mainly psychological origins, it is not purely a psychological condition. The body and its sensations also play a role. The body has learned that any form of penetration, no matter how slight, means pain. Therefore, when such contact is anticipated, the body and the pelvic floor automatically tense up. This not only causes more pain but also reinforces the body's expectation of pain. It becomes a vicious cycle that is difficult for the affected person to break free from.

What methods can help you?

Special medical devices called vaginal dilators come in various sizes and can be used to gradually expand the vagina and get accustomed to penetration. It is crucial to develop a sense of your own vagina, realizing that penetration can be pain-free, and thus reducing or eliminating the fear of pain during penetration. However, it's important to note that without appropriate psychological support, such success would be unlikely. If your vaginismus is related to a past experience, we recommend seeking psychotherapeutic support. By working through your experiences, you can learn to let go of your fear, leading to healing and pain-free penetration free from anxiety. Sometimes, it can also be helpful to seek out a sexual therapist who can specifically address your sexual life. You have a long road ahead, but we are confident that you have the strength to reach the end of the tunnel.

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