Imagine living with severe, stabbing pain in your vagina and you’ll understand what it’s like to live with vaginismus. This condition refers to the involuntary contraction of the vaginal muscles during penetration of any kind — including sex, tampons and toys. It can cause debilitating pain and make life unbearable, but the pain of vaginismus isn’t only physical. Since it doesn’t have a single identifiable cause, it often goes misunderstood, misdiagnosed and mistreated. Many patients suffer for years, told their pain is all in their head, before they find a pelvic pain specialist who understands their experience.
New York’s pelvic pain specialist Dr. Sonia Bahlani recently spoke with Bustle about vaginismus: what it is, what causes it, and most importantly, why it absolutely can be treated. You do not have to accept vaginismus (or any pelvic pain!) as a part of your life. Pelvic Pain Doc can help you find the relief you deserve.