Lucy Loo (not her real name), a 42 year-old engineer, presented to my clinic due to the onset of painful sex. Of note was that she was in a new relationship with a younger man (32 years old) who she reported was quite well-endowed. She was quite fond of this man and said he was very sexual. She explained that she had always been a rather conservative person in the bedroom but, since meeting Buck, found herself experimenting more with him. Reluctantly, she said, “I must admit the sex can get a bit rough at times, but I am OK with it except for lately, it is very sore and painful when he enters me and the pain continues as he thrusts.” She also explained that this pain impacted her ability to experience orgasm and her screaming was no longer due to pleasure but pain instead.
Recently she found she has been avoiding sex with Buck and that was upsetting for both of them. Lucy Loo had gone to “Dr. Google” and searched painful sex, which is the most common google search for women but became very frightened with all of the possibilities. What she did learn was that she needed help.
At age 42, women’s vaginal tissues may become dry leading to thin vaginal tissues in and around the entrance to the vagina. An internal examination revealed a tear at the base of the entrance to the vagina, where the tissues were thin and the area was reddened and looked quite sore. Lucy Loo’s vaginal tissues were quite dry as well which would also account for pain during intercourse.
My recommendation for Lucy Loo was to apply a zinc barrier cream containing cod liver oil and vitamin E to the base of the entrance to her vagina twice daily for two weeks. This would help the area feel better immediately. My education to Lucy Loo was that estrogen receptors in the vaginal area decrease as women enter the peri-menopausal years (from about age 37). This may also happen at other times in a woman’s life like when taking oral contraceptive pills, breastfeeding and quite commonly after menopause.
In addition to a barrier cream, I recommended a personal moisturizer. In this case, I recommended RepaGyn® because of its healing properties, daily for two months and then twice weekly to help improve the overall health of her vaginal tissues. The ingredients like vitamin E, aloe vera, and tea tree oil contained in RepaGyn® would help to keep her tissues healthy and youthful. Lucy Loo was so relieved to find there was a physical reason for her sexual pain and that there were treatments available. Knowing sex would once again be pain-free, she felt confident about getting back to the bedroom and screaming for the right reasons with her “young Buck”.