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Top 5 Tips to Reduce Pain with Intercourse

Roses are red, violets are blue, sexual intimacy is meant to be enjoyable for both your partner and you…With Valentine’s Day approaching, couples are expressing their love for each other in many ways. Gift giving, words of affirmation, physical touch, and quality time are all common ways in which people express love to their partners. Physical touch and intercourse may play a role in how well connected you feel to your partner. However, sometimes sex can be painful and partners can find themselves trying to avoid it at all costs. Painful intercourse can have effects on both partners’ physical and mental health if left unaddressed.  Read below to learn the top tips to deduce pain with intercourse.

Top 5 tips to help reduce pain with intercourse to allow you to have a pleasurable and safe sexual experience

  1. Lubrication : Lubrication is one of easiest ways to help reduce pain during sex.  Using a water-based lubricant both before and during sex can help reduce discomfort that may be the result of vaginal dryness. Lack of lubrication can be the result of decreased stimulation, child birth, or menopause. Using added lubrication can help stimulate the vulva area to reduce friction and discomfort. 
  2. Talk to your partner: Any time you are being intimate with your partner, communication is key. If a position is uncomfortable or you start to experience pain, speak up and let your partner know. This way you can change positions, add lubricant, or take a break if needed. It is important to discuss the pain or discomfort you are having with your partner so they can help make adjustments to allow you both to have a pleasurable experience. 
  3. Foreplay: Foreplay is a major factor in stimulation prior to intercourse. Extending foreplay can help to increase vaginal stimulation resulting in more natural lubrication and relaxation of vaginal muscles; all of which can reduce pain during sex. 
  4. Try different positions: Don’t be afraid to mix things up. If one position is uncomfortable try propping yourself up with pillows, move around, or change the angle. Position changes can make a huge difference in discomfort felt during sex. Talk with your partner to find the ones that work best for you. 
  5. Find a pelvic floor therapist: If you continue to have pain with sex, penetration, or tampon use, it may be time to reach out to a pelvic floor therapist. Often times pain with sex may be the result of tight or weakened pelvic floor muscles. This tightening or weakening can happen with aging, child birth, hormonal changes, or with excess physical strains. A pelvic floor therapist can assess your pelvic floor and help reduce muscle tightness through hands-on techniques to allow the tight tissues to relax. In addition they will assess for any surrounding muscle weakness and teach you how to properly stretch and perform self massage via a vaginal wand. 


Intercourse should always be pleasurable versus a painful experience. If you find that you or your partner are having consistent pain with intercourse, it may be time to reach out to your physician or find a pelvic floor physical therapist. For more information on how Action Potential can help you, request an appointment today with one of our trained pelvic floor therapists.

Photo by Kristina Paukshtite: https://www.pexels.com/photo/three-red-heart-balloons-704748/

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