HomeSex and AyurvedaBurning sensation during sex: Why it happens and how to prevent it

Burning sensation during sex: Why it happens and how to prevent it

Sexual intercourse is often associated with pleasure and intimacy, but for some individuals, it can lead to pain and a burning sensation in their intimate area. Sex should not hurt, and if you experience discomfort during intercourse, it is essential to identify the underlying causes and seek appropriate treatment. Let us explore some possible reasons for the burning sensation during sex and how to prevent it.

Why do I feel a burning sensation during sex?

Health Shots got in touch with Dr Sonamm Tiwari, Consultant-Gynaecologist and Obstetrician, Hiranandani Hospital Vashi-A Fortis Network Hospital to understand the possible causes of burning sensation during or after sex and what can be done to stop it.

1. Vaginal dryness

One common physical cause of burning during sex is vaginal dryness. Inadequate vaginal lubrication can result from various factors such as hormonal imbalances, different phases of the menstrual cycle, pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, perimenopause, and menopause. Certain medications such as anti-allergic drugs, chemotherapy, and radiation can also cause vaginal dryness. Dr Tiwari says it it is advisable to use lubricants during sex, as they help reduce friction and enhance comfort.

vaginal dryness and burning during sex
Vaginal dryness is a major cause of discomfort during sex. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

2. Infections

Various infections can lead to a burning sensation during intercourse. Bacterial vaginal infections, yeast infections, and urinary tract infections are common culprits. Bacterial vaginosis can cause vaginal burning in women, while men may experience prostatitis. “Yeast infections are characterized by itching, white discharge, and burning. Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) like trichomoniasis, gonorrhea, genital herpes, and chlamydia can also cause vaginal pain,” says Dr Tiwari. Seeking medical attention and appropriate medication is crucial for treating these infections effectively.

3. Allergies and irritation

Dr Tiwari explains that allergies and some substances such as lubricants, latex, or even semen can cause a burning sensation. Some lubricants containing parabens and sulfates can also alter the pH of the vagina, leading to irritation.

Using water-based lubricants without fragrances, flavors, or other additives can help in such situations. Latex condoms may also cause irritation, and switching to alternative materials can be beneficial. It is important to use sex toys and products that are compatible with the body to avoid irritation and pain.

lubricant to avoid burning during sex
Using lubricant can make sex life pain free! Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

4. Vulvodynia and vaginismus

Vulvodynia is a chronic condition characterized by pain or burning around the vaginal entrance due to hypersensitive nerve endings. It is often triggered by touch during sex. Vaginismus, on the other hand, involves involuntary tightening and contraction of the vaginal muscles, making penetration difficult or painful. These conditions can be triggered by various factors, including anxiety or a history of sexual trauma.

“Seeking professional help, such as pelvic floor physical therapy and psychological counseling, can aid in managing these symptoms,” says Dr Tiwari.

Also read: Is vaginismus hampering your sex life? Try these 5 exercises

5. Vaginal injuries

According to the gynaecologist, fissures or cracks in the vulva, vagina or anus can cause a burning sensation during and after sex. Inadequate lubrication before sexual activity is a common cause of these fissures.

While they usually heal on their own, it is advisable to abstain from sexual activity for a few days to allow proper healing. Rare dermatological conditions like Lichen Sclerosus can also lead to frequent vaginal fissures, requiring medical diagnosis and treatment to prevent further complications.

6. Psychological causes

Mental health factors such as depression, stress, anxiety, past trauma, relationship problems and lack of desire or arousal can all contribute to pain and discomfort during intercourse.

Seeking psychological counseling can help address these underlying issues and improve overall sexual well-being. Insufficient arousal can also result in decreased vaginal lubrication, leading to pain, discomfort, and burning during penetration. Using additional lubrication when needed can alleviate this issue.

psychological problem and burning during sex
Psychological stress can lead to uncomfortable sex. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

7. Positional causes

“Certain sexual positions can cause microtears, friction, and a burning sensation,” says Dr Tiwari. If pain occurs, changing positions and using lubricants during all sexual activities can help minimize discomfort and prevent further irritation.

Expert tip: It is crucial to seek medical advice if you experience persistent pain, discomfort, or a burning sensation during intercourse. While using lubricants, treating infections with medication, and seeking psychological counseling can provide relief in many cases, a healthcare professional can help determine the underlying cause and create an individualized treatment plan.

Remember, sexual intercourse should be a pleasurable and enjoyable experience. By understanding the possible causes of burning during sex and taking preventive measures, individuals can enhance their sexual well-being and maintain a healthy and fulfilling intimate life.

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