What to Do About Painful Intercourse

Dyspareunia. That’s a word that means “painful sex.” A few years ago, you couldn’t even imagine such a thing. Now it’s sidelining your love life.

Painful intercourse can have its roots in both physical and emotional issues,  including an infection, sexual abuse, or trauma. But if you’re in your 40s or beyond, you may be experiencing dyspareunia as a symptom of perimenopause or menopause.

At OBGYN Care of Houston, we have two expert OB/GYNs — Sharon Smith, MD, and Andrea Alexander, MD, — who believe that joyful, comfortable sex is your right as a woman, no matter what your age.  Whether you suspect that hormonal changes are causing your pain or you aren’t sure why sex hurts, you can feel comfortable knowing that our team takes the time to find out the cause of your problem, then we come up with a treatment plan. 

Making sure you’re healthy

When you come to OBGYN Care of Houston because you don’t enjoy sex anymore, we take time to listen to you describe your symptoms and find out when they started. We may conduct a pelvic exam to make sure all of your reproductive organs are healthy and to pinpoint any areas of pain. 

We may also do blood and urine tests to determine if you have a urinary tract infection (UTI), sexually transmitted disease (STD), or other infection.

If you’re still menstruating, you might be experiencing painful sex because of a physical condition, such as endometriosis or uterine fibroids. You might also experience pain during sex if you try to have intercourse too soon after childbirth or surgery. 

Other conditions that can cause intercourse to hurt include:

Depending on the cause of painful sex, we may recommend medications, antibiotics, or surgery to resolve your pain.

Balancing your hormones

If your main symptom is a dry vagina and lack of sensation and you’re in perimenopause or menopause, you may benefit from bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT). We recommend BHRT instead of traditional HRT because it’s synthesized from plant sources, such as soy and yams, and it has a chemical structure that’s identical to human hormones.  

Your body reacts to BHRT as if they’re your own hormones, so you’re less likely to have any adverse effects. Once your body adjusts, about 10 days after you start treatment, you notice changes like:

Using BHRT may also protect your bones from osteoporosis. 

Revving things up

If your painful sex was due to physical changes in your vulva and vagina, or to chronic pain after childbirth or surgery, a cutting-edge treatment called the O-Shot® could not only banish your symptoms but make sex better than ever. 

The O-Shot is created from the healing platelets in your own blood. We remove a small amount of blood from your arm and then process it to create a serum with a high concentration of platelets.

We inject the O-Shot into the upper portion of your vaginal entrance, near the “G-spot.” The platelets heal your vaginal and vulvar tissues so that they become stronger, thicker, and more youthful again. You not only feel sexier, but you also look it (yes, you get plumper as well as juicier “down there”). 

You may feel the effects of the O-Shot within just a few hours of your treatment. But you should avoid sex for at least a day or two, because you may be sore at the injection site. 

To find out why you have painful sex and get the treatment you need, call our Houston, Texas, office today or request an appointment online.

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