Dyspareunia isn’t a word most women find themselves using, but perhaps it should be. Dyspareunia means painful sex, and it affects up to 45% of women after menopause. The problem is that because many women don’t talk about the discomfort they feel before, during, or after sex, they think they’re alone in their pain.
Actually, though, painful sex is both very common and very treatable. Here at BodyLogicMD of Hartford in Glastonbury, Connecticut, Anita Petruzzelli, MD, and our team offer sexual health care to help women have comfortable, enjoyable sex throughout their entire lives.
To understand how our sexual health treatment for women works, it’s first helpful to understand why painful sex is such a common problem.
Changing hormone levels and painful sex
As we get older, our bodies produce less and less estrogen. This doesn’t just mean our menstrual cycles eventually stop. It also causes vaginal changes, making the area dryer and the skin there thinner. With less lubrication and cushioning, penetrative sex often becomes increasingly painful.
This discomfort during sex can show up differently for different women, but it’s often described as:
These aren’t symptoms you should ignore. If you continue to have sex without sufficient vaginal lubrication, you risk suffering vaginal inflammation, torn tissue, and other issues.
There are two pieces of good news here. First, it’s perfectly normal to experience increasing discomfort — and even pain — as you get older. You’re not alone. Secondly, and more importantly, there’s a way to reverse the changes in your body so you can regain your enjoyment of sex again.
How to improve comfort during sex
Dr. Petruzzelli has a way to directly address what’s often the root cause of painful sex: declining estrogen levels. She offers bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, which gives your body estrogen that’s identical to the estrogen your body produces.
Depending on what your body needs, your bioidentical hormone replacement therapy may also include testosterone and dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), both of which can also help with vaginal dryness. Testosterone can also give your sex drive a boost, while DHEA can increase sensitivity and make it easier to reach orgasm.
Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy is delivered via a tiny pellet that Dr. Petruzzelli implants in the region of your hip. The pellet slowly and consistently releases the hormones your body needs to restore comfort during sex.
You’re not stuck with pain during sex. To learn more about bioidentical hormone replacement therapy and what it can do for you, book an appointment online or over the phone with BodyLogicMD of Hartford today.