Let’s be honest — menstrual pain is no walk in the park.
From the unbearable cramps, aches, and belly bloat to the crying spells, mood swings, and fatigue, it’s no wonder why so many women go into hibernation the moment their period comes for a visit.
That said, although pain via your time of the month can put a real damper on things, pain that’s not related to your menstrual cycle can be even more upsetting and may leave you wondering what the heck is going on down there.
We hate to break it to you, but there are a number of things that could be causing your vaginal soreness. Worry not, though — Love Wellness is here to help with all things women’s health.
In this post, we’re exploring your most beautiful organ to uncover why it might be hurting and what you can do to feel better.
What Should I Know About Vaginal Pain?
Scratchy, stinging, or all-around ouchy private parts aren’t always easy-peasy to discuss, but you should speak up about vaginal pain to your primary care provider because persistent discomfort below the belt can indicate an underlying medical problem.
And in most cases, as soon as the root cause of the problem is identified, treatment for relief can begin.
In other words, you don’t have to live your life with vaginal pain — solutions are available!
What Are the Symptoms of Vaginal Pain?
The symptoms of vaginal pain can vary from person to person and may range in intensity from mild to severe. Additionally, depending on the root cause of your vaginal pain, you may experience the following symptoms at your vaginal opening or inside of your vagina:
- Painful intercourse (painful sex)
- Abnormal vaginal discharge
- Light bleeding
- Foul odor
If your sore vagina or vulvar pain is accompanied by chills, a high fever, or tachycardia (rapid heart rate), seek immediate medical care as your vaginal pain may indicate a serious medical condition that requires emergency evaluation.
What Causes Vaginal Pain?
Vaginal pain may be confined solely to your vaginal area or radiate down from your pelvis or cervix. It could be coming from your actual vagina (the internal organ) or from the labia and skin that form your vulva (your outside genitalia).
Regardless of where the pelvic pain is coming from, there’s no denying that any kind of vaginal discomfort is miserable.
Thankfully, though, there are a number of solutions that can help — however, in order to find relief through proper treatment, you first need to identify the root of the problem.
So, why does your vagina hurt? Well, there are many culprits that could be behind your vaginal pain, such as:
Simply put, a yeast infection occurs when the balance of microbes in your vagina gets out of whack due to an overgrowth of a naturally occurring fungus called Candida. While these don’t usually give you pain per se, they can leave you feeling dry and itchy in the vagina, which is sometimes interpreted as pain.
Other yeast infection symptoms include:
- Irritation of the vagina or vulva
- A burning sensation
- Soreness in or around the vagina or vulva
- Redness, swelling, or a rash of the vulva (the folds of skin outside the vagina)
- White, lumpy discharge, often resembling cottage cheese
- Watery or thick discharge
According to research, these frustrating infections affect around 75% of all women at least once in their lifetime, but some are afflicted more frequently than others.
That said, if you’re someone who suffers from issues with vaginal yeast on the reg, adding a probiotic — such as Good Girl Probiotics — to your daily supplement line-up just might be what you need to keep your vaginal microbiome in check.*
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We also suggest using The Killer the moment you suspect a problem to quickly help balance pH and support a healthy vaginal flora (aka, the normal levels of bacteria and yeast found in the vagina) for ultimate freshness down there.*
The Killer® (Boric Acid Suppositories)
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Bacterial vaginosis — or BV — is a common condition that happens when there are more “unfriendly” bacteria than “friendly” bacteria in the vagina. The telltale signs of BV include:
- Pain, itching, or burning in the vagina
- A strong fishy odor — especially after sex
- Burning when urinating
- Itching around the outside of the vagina
- White, grey, or green discharge
In most cases, the vagina regains its bacterial balance and resolves BV on its own, but if treatment is necessary, a doctor may prescribe an antibiotic like clindamycin, metronidazole, or tinidazole.
Despite what many people may think, vaginal dryness isn’t just for menopausal women. Women of all ages can experience some occasional dryness.
Common causes of vaginal dryness include:
- Childbirth and breastfeeding
- Birth control pills
- Sjogren’s syndrome (an autoimmune disorder that causes dryness throughout the entire body)
- Certain medications (such as anti-estrogen meds that are commonly used to treat uterine fibroids and endometriosis, as well as some antidepressants and antihistamines)
- Radiation or chemotherapy treatment for cancer
- Removal of the ovaries
- Removal of the ovaries
- Not enough foreplay before sexual intercourse
If vaginal dryness occurs during sex, we recommend using Sex Stuff — a super slippery and hydrating personal lubricate that is formulated to support the vaginal environment. With a pH balanced formula that is free of icky ingredients like glycerin and parabens, Sex Stuff is female and toy friendly (wink, wink).*
What Are Other Causes of Vaginal Pain?
As you can see, there are quite a few things that can cause your vagina to hurt. Other causes of vaginal pain include:
- Endometriosis — a painful disorder in which tissue similar to the lining of the uterus grows outside of the uterine cavity.
- Vulvodynia — chronic pain or discomfort around the vulva
- Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) — such as herpes, gonorrhea, and chlamydia
- Vaginismus — the involuntary tensing or contracting of muscles around the vagina
- Urinary tract infection (UTI) — a painful infection that happens when bacteria enter the urinary tract.
- Bartholin’s cyst — occurs when the Bartholin glands on the labia become blocked
- Pelvic floor dysfunction — a health condition where the muscles and tendons in the pelvic area weaken, causing vaginal pain
- Vulvar cancer — cancer of the outer portion of the female genitalia
- Perimenopause — the period before menopause, due to fluctuating hormones and a major dip in estrogen production, perimenopause can cause vaginal dryness, which often results in vaginal pain
- Lichen sclerosis — an itchy and painful skin condition that can affect the area around the vulva.
In addition, the offender behind your sore lady bits could be due to vigorous sex or a well-endowed partner. The tissue in and around your vagina is oh-so-very delicate and can tear or bruise during rough sex, leading to vaginal soreness.
No one is supposed to feel especially sore after penetrative sex, so if your vagina hurts afterward every time, consider talking to your partner about taking it down a notch.
On the flip side, if you think your pain is due to your partner’s relatively large *ahem* package, look for tips on how to cope and try a super-slippery lube — like Sex Stuff.*
Wrapping it Up
If your sensitive personal parts are in pain, it could be due to many reasons, such as a yeast infection, BV, or vaginal dryness. That said, regardless of what’s causing your vagina to hurt, there are solutions available — you don’t have to suffer.
Here at Love Wellness, we create natural solutions for natural problems because, just like you, we experience them too. Made with love and by experts who have been there, too, we believe wellness should be accessible, affordable, and educational for all.
Whether you’re experiencing vaginal pain, struggling with recurrent infections, or simply on a mission to support your most beautiful organ with clean, doctor-developed products, you can count on us to have just what you need to feel your best.
Check us out today and start living better tomorrow. Trust us — you’ll be glad you did.