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Tips on How to Prevent Painful Sex

by Supplement View Staff

Although discomfort during monogamous sex is more common for women, men can as well. Sex is supposed to be romantic and enjoyable for both parties, not painful. After using these tips, you and your partner will look forward to time in the bedroom.

Lube Up

This is the most guaranteed way to achieve the goal. Lubricant reduces the friction and pain when a woman’s natural lubricant isn’t enough. It’s a common issue for women to be too “dry,” thus leading to pain on both ends. Some condoms are lubricated, but more won’t hurt — literally.

Besides, the lubricant on condoms may not last during long or intense sex. Lube also lends a hand to safer sex, since a dry condom is more likely to break than a lubricated one. It’s crucial to use lube during anal sex because well, the anus doesn’t naturally lubricate. Always use lube with sex toys too.

Make sure your lube is compatible with your condom and sex toy. Water-based lube is the safest bet for toys, but in general as well, since some may suffer from silicone allergies. Never use oil-based lube for condoms, or you can risk altering pH levels, eventually leading to an infection. It is crucial to remember lubricants are not contraceptives and should not substitute condoms or birth control.

Check your Protection

If your partner is opposed to condoms, it’s probably not because they want unsafe sex. A common reason why women don’t like condoms is due to reactions to certain chemicals. Latex allergies and problems with nonoxynol-9 may lead to irritation and vaginal infections.

Since condoms are the best way to practice safe sex, look into other options. Try a different brand of condoms and test to see which is the most comfortable for both of you. Polyurethane condoms are latex free and help protect against STDs but break easily and are rather expensive. Female condoms are also made of polyurethane and serve as another alternative.

Polyisoprene condoms are made with synthetic latex, so an allergic reaction is less likely to occur. These condoms feel more like a regular latex condom. As stated before, remember to use lube, no matter what condom you choose.

Try New Positions

If you’re using enough lube and the condom isn’t the problem, maybe you need to change up your position. For this tip, simplicity is key. The most comfortable position is most often missionary, with the man on top.

Other positions that include a pillow or support to lean on can prove more comfortable as well. In any position, try shifting up, down, left, or right and see which feels the most comfortable. A simple shift can make a big difference.

While you may do a quick Google search for “most comfortable positions,” it all depends. Some positions prove more comfortable than others; it depends on the people involved. A guaranteed way is to look at the possibilities together and try them out, trial and error style. Once you find the best position that works on both ends, stick with it until you’re ready to try something else.


Don’t neglect foreplay before sex. Not only will foreplay sexually stimulate both you and your partner, but it may benefit in the long run. One study showed that engaging in foreplay may help men achieve a climax easier. Plus, it’s just fun.

Foreplay makes sex more comfortable for women in particular. As a woman gets aroused, the vaginal muscles will pull back and make more room — a process known as vaginal tenting. If this doesn’t happen beforehand, it could lead to discomfort and pain for her. Don’t forget foreplay can help a couple feel more intimate which will ultimately lead to a good time together.


Not only is communication crucial for any healthy relationship, but it is crucial for sex. If you or your partner is experiencing pain during sex, sit down and talk about it. Avoid pointing fingers and creating an argument because the point is getting better together.

If necessary, contact a doctor to discuss serious physical problems. Pregnancy and menopause can play a role in discomfort or pain during sex due to hormonal changes. Health issues in men and women such as inflammation, infection, or irritation of genitalia will make sex unpleasant. A doctor can recommend treatment.

Another option is to contact a therapist. Psychological and emotional issues such as feelings of guilt, fear, and anxiety can prevent enjoyable sex. Past unpleasant experiences can preemptively inhibit someone to enjoy future experiences.

Enthusiasm Matters

Make sure the both of you are enthusiastic about sex. Sometimes after a long day at work, you’re too tired to get in the mood. Maybe you’re feeling under the weather and know you won’t have the stamina. It won’t be enjoyable if you’re not into it.

When it’s the wrong time, tell your partner. Keep your tone gentle; don’t sound accusatory. Don’t make any promises that you know you may not upkeep.

Enthusiasm is synonymous with consent. Do not make any sexual advances on your partner if they firmly state no, or anything other than an enthusiastic yes. It doesn’t matter if you are boyfriend and girlfriend or if you’re married — continuing without permission from your partner is considered sexual assault or rape.

Explore Alternatives

Sometimes you must take a break from penetration. As stated before, engage in foreplay until you both feel ready for sex again. You can also use sex toys that do not involve penetration. Ask about your partner’s sexual desires (commonly known as kinks) to spice up your sex life without the pain.

Another alternative is to spend time as a couple outside the bedroom. You don’t need sex to form and strengthen a closer bond with your significant other. Plan a small vacation together or indulge at your favorite restaurant. In a few days, try sex again using the above tips.

Pain and discomfort during sex are common. There is no shame or embarrassment in having a painful sexual experience. Following these easy tips can improve performance, trust, and sex overall.

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