6 Signs It’s Time to See Your Doctor About Painful Sex (Dyspareunia)
Sex is more painful after menopause than most people realize. The term dyspareunia is used for painful sex because of declining estrogen levels.
People are waiting for help they need. They might be reluctant to discuss their sexual problems with their doctor, or they might not realize that sex is related to menopause.
It is important to have an active sex life. The underlying cause of your symptoms can be treated by a doctor.
It is time to see a doctor about sex.
During and after menopause, the vaginal tissues can be thin. It is difficult to become naturally lubricated.
For some people, an over-the-counter, water-based lubricant or vaginal moisturizer is not enough.
If you have tried several products and still find sex painful, you should see your doctor. Your doctor can prescribe a vaginal cream, insert, or supplement to help you.
Vaginal bleeding after menopause should be evaluated by a doctor. This could be a sign of something serious. Your doctor will want to rule out any other conditions before giving you a diagnosis.
The vaginal walls can be thin due to decreased estrogen levels. This happens after menopause. Vaginal atrophy increases your risk of infections.
There are symptoms that include a burning sensation during urination and more frequent urination.
If you are also experiencing sexual pain, it can be worse. Your doctor will prescribe antibiotics to treat the UTI.
Your partner might not be able to understand what you are going through. You might feel embarrassed or hesitant to talk about the pain you are having, or you might find it hard to describe what it is.
You might start to lose interest in sex eventually. Being open about how you feel can make a relationship negative.
If you have trouble with communication, speak to your doctor about seeing a therapist.
Sex is a good part of a relationship, but it can be a source of anxiety. Your Pelvic floor muscles may tighten in response to stress and anxiety.
If you find that you are avoiding sex because of your fear of pain and anxiety, it is time to see a doctor.
Store-bought vaginal creams and lubricants can help reduce the severity of pain during sex. The pain gets worse for others despite using lubricants.
You may have other problems related to vaginal dryness.
“If the pain doesn’t go away or if you have any of the symptoms, you should make an appointment to see a doctor.”
- It could be burning around the vulvar.
- “It’s a frequent need to urinate.”
- vaginal tightness
- Light bleeding after sex.
- frequent infections
- Involuntary leakage is the cause of urinary incontinence.
- There are frequent vaginal infections.
Being prepared can help ease tension when visiting your doctor to discuss sex.
“Your doctor is there to help you feel better, but you can’t always expect them to start the conversation.”
In a 2014 study, only 13 percent of women said their healthcare provider started the conversation about postmenopausal vaginal changes.
Make a list of your symptoms and medical information to prepare.
- When your sexual problems started.
- What factors affect your symptoms?
- If you have tried something to address your symptoms.
- You can take any vitamins, supplements, or medications.
- When menopause began for you or when it ended?
- If you have other symptoms, such as urinating or hot flashes, you should seek medical help.
It is a good time to ask questions. Here are a few questions to ask to get started.
- What is causing the pain?
- Is there any other lifestyle changes I can make to improve the situation?
- Do you recommend websites, pamphlets or books for more advice?
- Will treatment help? How long will I need treatment?
Of the 64 million postmenopausal women in the United States, as many as half may be experiencing symptoms of painful sex, vaginal dryness, and vaginal irritation. That’s 32 million women!
“It doesn’t have to be painful sex. Doctors are becoming more aware of the need to discuss these topics with patients who have gone through menopause, but this isn’t always the case. Talking about sex can be uncomfortable, but it is important to talk to your doctor about your pain.”