How is vaginismus treated?

Vaginismus is usually treated with a combination of Kegel exercises to help relax the pelvic floor and counseling to deal with underlying stressors.

Vaginal dilators can be very effective. The goal of vaginal dilator therapy is not to stretch the vagina, but rather to give a woman the comfort of being able to place these safe devices both outside and inside her vagina, in the privacy of her own home. These kits usually start with very small dilators, and the woman can slowly advance in size as she feels comfortable. A specially trained physical therapist or your doctor can teach you to use these dilators, if preferred.

Sometimes, anesthetic creams can be applied to these dilators until a woman can get used to them. Your doctor will come up with the best treatment plan for you, based on the causes of vaginismus.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 03/20/2015.


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  • American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology. When sex is painful Accessed 3/20/2015

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