Why sex might hurt for you

One in three women suffer from pain during sex. And if that's you, here's what might be up...

Is he too big?

Poor men can’t win sometimes – if they’re too small it can be a big disappointment, but if they’re too big they can cause you actual pain. If it’s a case of the latter, focus more on foreplay as your vaginal muscles relax when you’re aroused – leaving more room for him. Use lube and get him to take his time. And try a rocking motion instead of a thrust.

Are you too dry?

This is one of the top reasons women experience pain during sex. Again, drag out the foreplay to make sure you’re really aroused. Also try new things (positions, places, underwear) in order to make things more exciting. But if you’re totally turned on and still suffering, it may be due to a dip in estrogen levels, which can occur just after your period or as a result of using the pill – and results in a decline in lubrication.

Have you tried a different position?

If sex sometimes hurts for you, and sometimes doesn’t, this could just be due to changes caused by your menstrual cycle that everybody suffers. Hormonal and physical shifts occur throughout your cycle that may suddenly make some positions painful – so try switching things up until you find one that’s more comfortable.

Are you nervous or stressed?

Is your mind getting busy while you’re supposed to be? If so, this could be your problem. Your vaginal muscles are very sensitive to stress, so if you’re worrying about other things this can actually cause your vajayjay to constrict and make sex painful. Try taking some down time to relax before bed to avoid this.

Are you constipated?

Yes, seriously. If your bowels are full it can create pressure on your pelvic floor – making intercourse uncomfortable. Make sure you keep things ‘down there’ regular so your sex life stays regular - eat your veggies, get plenty of fibre in your diet and exercise regularly.

Is it around ‘that time’ of the month?

Your uterus swells and becomes more sensitive right before your period – which means he needs to take things more gently as thrusting movements can cause your cervix to cramp. (OUCH!) Also, if you’re suffering in the days after your period this could be because your ovaries have heightened sensitivity around that time. Feeling pain on one side of your abdomen during sex is an indicator of this – so stick to going on top so you can control the angle of penetration.

Have you been drinking?

Booze can irritate your bladder and will make you need the toilet more. If this occurs during sex it can cause all kinds of discomfort (not to mention inconvenience). The same can be said of spicy foods or caffeine – so if you have been indulging in any of these pre-sex, this may be your problem.

Have you got an injury?

If you’re struggling with injury in your back, legs or hips – then this could be the reason your playtime’s becoming painful. This is because your vaginal muscles are connected to all of those, so if you throw out one – it can affect the others.

Could you have an STD?

If you don’t think your problem is any of the above, you should probably bite the bullet and get yourself checked out. STDs and infections can cause lots of discomfort during sex – so that visit to the clinic will be totally worth it, even if it’s just for peace of mind.