What are the Causes of Vaginismus, and How is it Treated?

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Though the cause of vaginismus is not always understood, it is believed to be psychological and physical in nature. This condition causes the muscles of the vagina to tighten involuntarily, making any activity involving penetration difficult or even impossible.

Vaginismus treatment may involve the use of neuromodulators (BOTOX® injections) to break the cycle of pain. Board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Jaime Schwartz has developed this innovative process at our clinic.

If you are suffering from painful intercourse, do not hesitate to call for a vaginismus consultation in Beverly Hills, CA. Our compassionate team of experts can help you return to a normal and healthy sex life.

What is primary and secondary vaginismus?

Primary vaginismus occurs when a woman has never been comfortable using tampons, undergoing a pelvic exam, or having sexual intercourse due to pain or discomfort. Secondary vaginismus is when a woman has experienced these forms of penetration in the past but is unable to do so now.

People with all forms of vaginismus often feel embarrassed or self-conscious of their condition, but rest assured, this is a common and treatable issue.

What are the common causes of vaginismus?

The exact cause of painful intercourse is still unknown but is believed to stem from one or a combination of factors. For example:

  • Psychological: Fear and anxiety are thought to be the leading causes of vaginismus. A previous traumatic sexual experience or unrealistic ideas and expectations about sex can contribute to this issue.
  • Physical: Certain medications or medical conditions may lead to vaginismus later in life. For example, women with endometriosis or pelvic inflammatory disease can have vaginismus as a result of their condition.

How does Dr. Schwartz treat vaginismus?

Dr. Schwartz can perform an evaluation and develop a custom plan to help you overcome vaginismus and restore your quality of life in Beverly Hills, CA. We begin by identifying the underlying causes, whether they are psychological or physical.

He may recommend neuromodulators such as BOTOX to break the pain cycle. Our minimally invasive injections relax the muscles in and around the vagina, allowing for easier penetration. Most women see results 10 – 14 days following vaginismus treatment.

Other therapies are available such as:

  • Physical therapy: Performed by a trained physical therapist in order to relax the muscles around the vagina and improve sexual function.
  • Therapy: Can address any psychological or emotional issues that may be contributing to vaginismus.
  • Couples counseling: Helps couples work through relationship issues related to vaginismus.

Dr. Schwartz is happy to make recommendations for the appropriate care, depending on your individual case.

When to expect results after BOTOX injections

BOTOX injections take only a few minutes and are virtually painless. Patients can continue to see other professionals and specialists as needed.

Women can begin using dilators – small, smooth devices made for stretching the vaginal tissues – about ten days after vaginismus treatment. Dilators gradually increase the diameter of the vaginal opening, allowing for easier penetration.

Overcoming vaginismus does require some time and patience. It can take several weeks or months before you start feeling more comfortable with penetrative activities. However, we have seen a 97% success rate with neuromodulators, with most women experiencing virtually pain-free penetration after one session.

Manage your vaginismus

We understand that vaginismus is a sensitive topic. Board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Jaime Schwartz is proud to provide compassionate, individualized care for patients with vaginismus in Beverly Hills, CA, and surrounding areas. Contact us to learn about your options and how we can help you overcome painful intercourse, and more.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.