Painful Intercourse: Symptoms, Causes & Treatment

Painful Intercourse: Symptoms, Causes & Treatment

Why is SEX painful sometimes?

Painful sex is also called dyspareunia. It is not a disease but rather a distressing symptom. Oftentimes, it can be the result of a hormonal imbalance, an emotional issue, or a physical condition associated with the genitalia or sexual organs.

It is important to diagnose the cause of painful intercourse because relief can often be dependent on managing the underlying cause, such as polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) and endometriosis. Treating PCOS, endometriosis and other conditions such as insulin resistance (which can influence PCOS) can minimize the severity of the symptoms and increase overall wellbeing.

Symptoms and causes of painful intercourse

The symptoms associated with dyspareunia can vary in intensity from mild to severe and can present differently with each woman. Symptoms may include:

  • Burning, aching, or tearing pain
  • Deep pain with thrusting
  • Pain during sex
  • Pain with every penetration (including nonsexual contact)
  • Pain only with certain positions
 Possible causes of dyspareunia include:
  • Polycystic ovarian syndrome 
  • Endometriosis 
  • Varicose veins in the pelvis 
  • Scars from an episiotomy 
  • Use of certain medications 
  • Vaginal dryness 
  • Vaginal infection 
  • Ectopic pregnancy 
  • Insufficient vaginal lubrication 
  • Thinning and dryness of the vaginal wall 
  • Bladder or other urinary tract disorders 
  • Cancer in the sex organs or the pelvic region 
  • Allergies to spermicides or to latex in condoms 
  • Adenomyosis 
  • Sexually transmitted infections 
  • Intercourse too soon after surgery or childbirth 
  • Menopause 
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease 
  • Irritable bowel syndrome 
  • Uterine prolapse 
  • Uterine fibroids 
  • Haemorrhoids 
  • Misplaced ovary 
  • Scars from surgeries in the pelvic area 
  • Ovarian cysts
  • Emotional factors

How painful intercourse can be treated

Treatment of painful sex revolves around addressing the underlying cause of these symptoms. However, here are a few things that could provide some relief:

Counselling: Individual, couples or sexual intervention can be very effective when there is a psychological element to your condition such as stress, previous sexual abuse, or poor self-confidence.

Changing positions or techniques: Sometimes pain during sex can be due to the time of the month, certain sexual positions, or lack of foreplay. Trying a less invasive position can create shallow penetration and minimize the pain.

Increasing lubrication: Using a personal lubricant or organic oil like coconut oil can greatly help with painful sex.

Pelvic floor physiotherapy: This is a gentle soft tissue massage in the vaginal and pelvic region designed to teach relaxation and pelvic floor exercises.

Balancing hormones for better sex

If dyspareunia is caused by PCOS or endometriosis, Happy Hormones can be an excellent way to help. If you try balancing your hormones by prescribing synthetic hormones, it’s a never-ending circle and it’s almost impossible to balance hormones this way.

It is vital to understand that hormones are controlled in the body via a centre in the brain called the hypothalamic pituitary adrenal (HPA) axis. This mechanism is common to all women and adapts with age. Happy Hormones (HH) works directly on this mechanism so it does not matter if you are a teenager or are menopausal – the body balances your hormones just the same.

Shop for Happy Hormones

There are added ingredients in HH that support other functions such as that of the liver, bowels, pancreas, adrenals, and sleep. However, this main mechanism is why women of all ages who experience some sort of imbalance get such great results with HH. They can even get better results if they also follow the 8-Week Program.

Healthy lifestyle changes such as regular exercise and taking supplements like chromium and the herbs Berberine and Gymnema can also help with insulin resistance. When you address the symptoms of PCOS  and endometriosis, inflammation lessens and pain after sex is significantly reduced.



Take the 28 Day
Happy Weight Challenge
Find out more
Join the Conversation

Join our private community group to chat with other women and get support and feedback about the Happy Hormones program.

Join Group
★ Reviews

Our Customer Reviews

2159 reviews
Healthy happy

I am generally a happy person yet HH makes me a healthier person. My flushes reduced and energy increased.

Mood Changer

I started on the Happy Hormone capsules on the advice of my daughter, who has been using the products for a little while now. I was unaware of any changes until I ran out of the capsules. My moods have definitely taken a downturn and I am not sleeping as well as I was. So, I have ordered more and will more closely monitor my reactions this time to see if the Happy Hormone Capsules were responsible for my improved moods/sleep patterns. Watch this space.

Hot Flushes

My journey so far had been a relatively easy transition through perimenopause until last month.
Hot flushes suddenly came on in a rush occurring every hour, more or less. This went on for around two weeks until i started my happy hormones powder.
The first day i noticed a decline straight away to approximately five flushes a day, by the fifth day i was having no more hot flushes.
I was skeptical but after taking the powder for the last three weeks i feel great, thank you so much for this amazing product.


I’ve been recommended these by a friend and I’m so excited to start them! The assessment was easy!
I’ve been dealing with hormone imbalances for years and I can’t wait to see these work.

Zero anxiety

Ive taken HH for over 2 years its been a lifesaver for me. Zero anxiety and no more heavy periods