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Endometriosis and sexuality

endometriosis sexuality

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Endometriosis And Sexuality

Introduction:

It is not always easy to share the worries that endometriosis can cause with your loved ones. Sexuality is probably the most complicated subject to discuss with your partner or friends. The fear of being misunderstood and of being vulnerable often leads to silence. By adopting this attitude, we do not allow those close to us to understand us and we lock ourselves into a complex that isolates us and can further harm our intimate relationships.

It is important to know that the symptoms of endometriosis can indirectly affect a woman’s sexuality and also her life as a couple. Endometriosis plays a very important role in the sexual and love life of patients and their partners.

Several symptoms can affect the desires of each person and impact on sexuality:

– Dyspareunia

In the context of endometriosis, we often speak of deep dyspareunia; violent pain felt in the lower abdomen during intercourse with penetration, following contact between the penis and the bottom of the vagina. This pain can occur during and/or after sexual intercourse.

Dyspareunia is the result of lesions near the vagina and at the recto-vaginal septum, but it can also be the result of inflammation in superficial endometriosis at the vaginal floor, or of severe adenomyosis.

– The impact on a woman’s sexuality

The repeated apprehension of coital pain and the emotional experience can lead to sexual dysfunction manifested by a decrease in libido, arousal, lubrication, genital congestion and create excessive tension in the woman’s perineal muscles.

In some women, hormonal treatment of endometriosis can also lead to decreased libido and/or vaginal lubrication. This is due to a decrease in estrogen, the hormone that stimulates desire and vaginal lubrication.

Other symptoms of endometriosis, such as long periods, chronic fatigue and pain outside of the period, do not encourage a fulfilling sexuality.

– The impact on her partner’s sexuality

The pain experienced by the woman can also have an impact on her partner’s desires. According to a study conducted by the Endofrance association, some men feel frustrated, others are afraid of hurting their partner, many have compassion but also sometimes disgust, and very few are indifferent to the disease.

– A fulfilling married life

Of course, it won’t always be easy, but there are many solutions to relieve the sexual pain associated with endometriosis.

First of all, you need to know how to communicate, dare to say that you are in pain, avoid deep positions and find other positions together without pain. Use lubricant and/or rehydrate the vulva on a daily basis if necessary.

Don’t forget that the pain felt during intercourse is not necessarily pathological: it can occur, for example, depending on the situation, the practices, the partners, etc. Sometimes you need to know how to relax, not put pressure on yourself and let things happen naturally.

Listen to your body and take the time to analyse your cycle, to know when the pains are more or less strong.

Talk about your frustrations, what you are feeling, follow a psychotherapy and/or sex therapy if needed.

When dyspareunia is caused by an estrogen deficiency, it is possible to provide synthetic estrogen. This can be applied locally as a cream or as a tablet as part of hormone replacement therapy.

For superficial dyspareunia, anesthetic creams, sitting baths or synthetic lubricants can be used.

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