Vaginal Pain - Possible Causes of Vaginal Pain (Pain in Vulva)

Vaginal Pain

Pain in the vagina may be caused by a variety of different reasons, and although many may not be medically urgent, it is always best to consult with your health care professional when you are experiencing vaginal discomfort or pain. It is also important to be able to describe the pain. Is it sharp, or dull and aching? Gnawing or burning-like? Is it soreness or feeling bruised and tender? Does the pain come and go or is it constant and you experience it daily? Is there anything that makes the pain better? Does anything make it worse?

The location of the pain is also important.  It is important to characterize the pain. Does the pain start in the vagina and then spread to other areas of the pelvis, like the bladder or anal area? Does it remain localized in the vaginal area? It may be helpful to write your symptoms down so that you may be better able to discuss it with your doctor. Pain that does not subside or resolve should always be evaluated by your health care provider. Some of the common causes of vaginal pain include:

  • Sexually transmitted infection or vaginitis.
  • Sexual intercourse may also be a cause of vaginal pain. New partners with different sexual techniques, or if you are experiencing sexual intercourse in different positions that you are not used too, may cause vaginal pain. Numerous sexual encounters over a short period of time, a well endowed sexual partner, prolonged sexual sessions or rough sex play may all cause vaginal discomfort. Rape or sexual violation with an object may also cause severe sexual and vaginal pain.
  • Cancer or precancerous conditions within the vagina or those in close proximity to the vaginal area, may indicate a more serious cause for the vaginal pain. Abnormal growths, tumors or polyps may cause bleeding, discomfort and pain and a comprehensive examination should occur to determine the accurate etiology of the pain.
  • Abdominal conditions, like endometriosis where the pain is more deep in nature, may also present with vaginal pain. Sexual assault with trauma, vaginal dryness from a variety of causes, and a foreign body within the vagina, may also be causes of pain.

A complete evaluation and assessment is warranted by your health care professional, if you think this may be a cause of your pain.



Read more about symptoms affecting the vulva and vagina that may be causing discomfort or pain.

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