What Is Dyspareunia?


Dyspareunia or painful intercourse is pain in the genital area that occurs continuosly or repeatedly when it will, is, or after sexual intercourse. Pain that appears sharp, hot, or like menstrual cramps. In addition to the vagina, the pain can also be felt in the bladder, urinary tract and pelvis. This condition can be caused by various factors, ranging from the illness that is being suffered to the psychological state. It would be better if dyspareunia was treated immediately, because dyspareunia would certainly interfere with the quality of sexual relations. This article will discuss dyspareunia in women

Causes of Dyspareunia
The cause of dyspareunia can be different in each person. It is necessary to check directly by a doctor to find out the causes of dyspareunia.

Some factors that can cause dyspareunia include:
  • Not enough lubricant. Not enough lubricant during sex can be caused by a lack of warm-up or pre- intercourse foreplay , decreased estrogen levels in the body due to menopause , or the use of drugs such as antihypertensive, sedative, antihistamines , or birth control pills.
  • Injury or irritation from an accident, pelvic surgery, or vaginal enlargement during childbirth.
  • There is inflammation of the vagina and urinary tract.
  • Have a congenital abnormality, such as a vagina that is not fully formed, or the hymen closes completely (no holes at all).
  • Suffer from other conditions, such as endometriosis , pelvic inflammatory disease, myoma, and ovarian cysts.
  • Impact of surgery or treatment, such as uterine surgery, radiation therapy (radiotherapy), or chemotherapy.
There are also other factors that can reduce sexual desire and potentially trigger dyspareunia, namely:
  • Having fear, guilt, or shame related to sex.
  • Stressful.
  • Having relationship problems with a spouse or other person.
  • Feeling insecure, nervous, even depressed with the appearance or condition of the body.
  • Middle of taking a drug, such as birth control pills.
  • Has a history of crime or sexual violence.
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Symptoms of Dispareunia
Dyspareunia is characterized by the emergence of symptoms in the form of continuous or recurring pain, and can occur at the beginning, time, or after sexual intercourse. Pain that appears sharp, hot, or like cramps during menstruation. In addition to the vagina, pain can also appear in the urinary tract (urethra), pelvis, or bladder.

It is also possible for patients to feel additional symptoms such as itching or the appearance of a throbbing sensation that lasts a long time. In fact, in some cases pain can also occur when the patient uses a tampon.


Diagnosis of Dyspareunia

The diagnosis process begins with tracing the symptoms that appear as well as the patient's medical history. The patient is asked not to be ashamed to tell the symptoms that are felt, such as the location where the pain appears, or where the pain appears.

After that, the diagnosis can be continued with a pelvic examination. Pelvic examination aims to detect pelvic abnormalities such as infection. In the process, the doctor will find out the location of the onset of pain by gently pressing the muscles in the genitals and pelvis.

In addition to pelvic examination, the doctor can also carry out a vaginal examination. At this examination, the doctor usually uses a special instrument (speculum) that is used to give space between the vaginal walls, so that the doctor can observe his condition.

There are also several other tests that can also be used in diagnosing dyspareunia, including:
  • Pelvic ultrasound
  • Test of vaginal fluid culture
  • Urine test
  • Allergy test.
If there is a suspicion that dyspareunia is caused by emotional factors, doctors will usually advise patients to counsel with a psychiatrist. Discuss further with the doctor, regarding the benefits and risks of the diagnostic method to be undertaken.


Dyspareunia Treatment
To treat dyspareunia, the method used can be drug administration, surgery or therapy. Consult further with the doctor. The doctor will determine the right method and adapt it to the cause that accompanies it.

Some drugs used to treat dyspareunia are:
  • Antibiotics, such as penicillin or cephalosporin groups. This drug is used if the cause is a bacterial infection.
  • Antifungals, such as fluconazole or ketoconazole . This drug is used if the cause is a fungal infection.
The method of surgery is performed when dyspareunia is caused by certain conditions, such as endometriosis. To deal with this condition, the doctor will perform surgery to remove the problematic tissue.

In addition to surgery and drug administration, treatment can also be done with therapy. The doctor will adjust the type of therapy to the patient's condition. Some therapies that can be used to treat dyspareunia include:
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy . In this therapy, patients will be given directions to change behavioral patterns and negative thoughts that can trigger dyspareunia.
  • Desensitization therapy. This therapy aims to relieve the pain that arises when associated, through vaginal relaxation techniques.
  • Sex therapy or counseling. The purpose of this therapy is to overcome negative emotions that can trigger the appearance of dyspareunia.
Patients can also make several efforts with their partner in reducing the pain that arises during sex. Among others are:
  • Open . Don't hold back and tell your partner about comfort during sex, whether it's related to position or rhythm.
  • Don't be in a hurry. Extend the warm-up time or foreplay when having sex, so as to trigger the release of natural lubricants. Pain can also be reduced if the patient delays penetration until he feels fully aroused.
  • Change position. If the pain appears at a certain position, try changing to another position.
If deemed necessary, use lubricant products during sex. Choose products that are suitable and comfortable when used. Consult further regarding the method of handling and preventing dyspareunia right with your doctor. An inappropriate method is feared to worsen the condition.


Prevention of Dyspareunia

There is no method that can definitely prevent dyspareunia. However, there are several efforts that can be made to reduce the risk. Among others are:
  • After giving birth, wait at least 6 weeks to get back in touch.
  • Use lubricant when vaginal dry.
  • Keep the genital area clean.
  • Make safe sexual relations to avoid sexually transmitted infections , for example by avoiding free sex.
Also do a longer warm-up before having sex to stimulate natural lubricants. Discuss further with the doctor regarding efforts that can be made to reduce the risk of dyspareunia. The doctor will determine the method that is in accordance with the patient's condition in reducing the risk.

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