Pain during intercourse is often a sign of infection. Bacterial vaginosis, overgrowth of yeast, and sexually transmitted infections can all irritate the tissues of the vaginal canal, causing burning or discomfort during sex. In some cases, these tissues may bleed after intercourse. See a healthcare provider soon to make sure you’re healthy. Remember, all services at Teen Clinic are free or low cost!
The vaginal canal can also become sore after poorly lubricated sexual activity. Keep plenty of water-based lubricant on hand, especially when you’re using a condom. Some females naturally self-lubricate quite a bit; others may not lubricate enough to avoid discomfort. Remember, reducing the friction during intercourse makes it less likely that vaginal tissues—and condoms!—will tear, lowering your risk for STIs. It’s important to use only water-based lubricants, since oil-based lubes can create holes in a condom. We keep free samples of lube in the waiting room at Teen Clinic; come grab some!
Lastly, make sure your partner knows when you’re experiencing pain during intercourse! Communicating with your partner is key to keeping sex safe and healthy. If you’re in pain—whether from a position, an infection, or poor lubrication—your partner should know that it’s time to stop.