Experiencing pain during sex is not something you need to live with. Vaginismus usually has psychological factors that cause it, good news is you can learn how to treat it.


  • Vaginismus can be described both by vaginal muscle spasms AND a vaginal penetration phobia.
  • Can be a result of physical and psychological factors.
  • Can be lifelong or acquired.  Treatment depends on the origin.
  • Sex therapy can help.

Vaginismus causes the muscles around the vagina to tighten involuntarily. This can cause some pain and discomfort, particularly when intercourse is concerned.  A lifelong condition can be due to a vaginal penetration phobia.  Very seldom in these cases could be explained by hymen or vaginal abnormalities.

Vaginismus can occur whether or not you’e had sex, and usually occurs when the genital area is touched. Examples are before sexual intercourse, before trying to insert a tampon, or even during a gynaecological exam.

Many women also experience vulvar pain alongside vaginismus, and can sometimes be diagnosed with vestibulodynia.

Integrated Sex + Relationship Therapy acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their Elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today and emerging.  We acknowledge sovereignty was never ceded.

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