Postpartum Sex Pain: A Mom’s Guide To Understanding Painful Sex & Overcoming It

It’s like this: 

You and your partner are getting it on and suddenly there’s pain down there. 

It’s uncomfortable. So the next time, you use a lubricant.

It went ok, but a few minutes passed by and you felt that dryness again. Could it be that the lubricant you used wasn’t effective?

Not only did it dry up quickly, but you also noticed you started feeling sore from that point. 

Having a baby is wonderful, yes… 

But, the uncomfortable sex that comes with having a baby is not.

If you’re feeling pain during sex, then it’s time you delve deeper into what’s really causing it.

The following provides more insights on understanding why sex really causes you pain after childbirth, and what you can do about it.

Dyspareunia Symptoms: Why Postpartum Sex Hurts

Having a child has somehow affected your sex life, but why?

  1. Vaginal tears from delivery: During the delivery of your baby, you may have torn some vaginal skin. This tearing takes time to heal and can create a painful experience during sex. 
  2. Vaginal Dryness: After having your baby, you're at a great risk for vaginal dryness. If you don't use a proper lubricant, then vaginal dryness can create painful sex. 
  3. Pelvic Floor Pain: Your pelvic floor is the makeup of the bones that surround your pubic area - during delivery you might have injured them and this can lead to painful postpartum intercourse. 

There are some other reasons why postpartum sex could hurt. You're frustrated that sex really hurts after having your baby and you want to know why. 

Just think about EVERYTHING that moms have to do.

They're dead-tired from getting the chores done (which happen after taking care of the baby). Oh, some sleepless nights too. 

Emotional factors can lead to painful sex - postpartum depression is a real thing. The mind is powerful and can lead to physical pain.

To some women, it can be an uncomfortable topic. Some tend to brush away the nagging thought and keep it to themselves, and some decide to give up on sex.

Discomfort and pain shouldn’t consume your time, effort, and self-confidence so long as you get to the root of it. But that’s not to say that the pain you’ve been experiencing cannot be undone.

In fact, a study about some mothers dealing with discomfort in sex after having a baby shows that it’s a common occurrence.

So, this means you’re not alone. There are hundreds and thousands of moms that are going through the same situation as you.

The next section will tell you more about painful sex after childbirth.

Causes of Painful Sex From Childbirth

During childbirth, the vagina itself and its thick lining change. It becomes thin, causing fluid production to be minimal. This section tells you more of its causes, resulting in the painful feeling that you get during sex:

1. Hormones

Hormones play a major role in making the vaginal area dry. In lactating women, breastfeeding inhibits ovulation.

This means you don’t get your period thanks to low estrogen levels. On the other hand, a lower than usual estrogen level can cause the vaginal lining to stop producing fluids, which serve as a lubricant.

2. Dryness in the vaginal area

Vaginal dryness is pretty common in many women after childbirth that results in itchiness, burning sensation, and a low sex drive.

These symptoms can go on for a long time if ignored.

3. Emotional Reasons

Sex is a very emotional thing, especially after having a baby. Many women don't feel as confident in their physical image. Or they feel disconnected to their partner after spending SO much time caring for the baby. 

These emotional blockages can actually lead to painful sex. 

How to satisfy your husband after having a baby 

First, let's get something straight:

If you're not in the mood, then that's okay. You are not forced to have sex.

At the same time, most women are interested in making sure their partners are sexually satisfied. 

Here are some things you can do to make sure your husband/partner is happy: 

  • Talk to him about what's going on: Satisfying your husband doesn't mean you HAVE to have sex. Educating him on how you feel will allow him to have more empathy with the situation you're in. 
  • When you're in the mood, take advantage of it: There might be fewer times when you're in the mood. When those moments happen, try your best to take advantage of them.
  • Use an all-natural lube when having sex: If you're dealing with vaginal dryness, then using a healthy lube will make sex much more enjoyable for both of you. 

Can I Have An Orgasm Despite Painful Sex After Having A Baby?

Here’s the one thing you need to know and understand: You can fully enjoy sex AND have orgasms even after you’ve had a baby.

To be honest, there’s virtually no reason for you not to enjoy sex as much.

Things You Can Do To Overcome Painful Sex:

1. Masturbating Regularly For Sexual Stimulation

Self-pleasure can help with postpartum sex pain. Many moms do this when the vaginal lining produces little amounts of fluid that act as the body’s natural lubricant. You can try this If you aren’t ready for penetration just yet.

2. Use An All-natural Lubricant

Painful sex often happens because of vaginal dryness. The go-to solution for vaginal dryness is to use sex lube. 

But, are you using the right kind of lubricant? Read on to provide you a healthy, natural way to keep you from getting painful sex.

Use The Right Lubricant for Sex That Hurts From Childbirth

Not all lubricants are created equal. Not all lubricants are effective.

Pain from sex is uncomfortable, annoying, and debilitating at times.

But, the right kind of lube has the ability to mitigate the pain and unpleasantness brought by painful sex.

When buying lube, ensure that:

  • It’s pure and free of chemicals
  • It can stay on the skin for long hours to hold natural fluids to prevent dryness and soreness

Dealing With Painful Arousal After Childbirth

Sex is inherently good. There are TONS of benefits that women get from having sex.  So the goal is to get your body & mind to a space that allows you to enjoy sex

Here are some of the benefits that women get from having sex:

1. It can help increases energy levels

2. You can experience emotional support and satisfaction from being appreciated & loved by your partner

3. It can make you feel beautiful and sexy

4. You can feel more inspired & less stressed

Now that sex that really hurt the first time after giving birth to a baby, you're worried that you might not get to have all of these benefits.

You might think that the days of glorious sex have come to an end.

That you’re forever bound to endure the discomfort in intimacy.

Sex shouldn’t be viewed that way.

You must understand that there are legitimate reasons why you’re having pain from sex, and there are helpful ways to overcome painful sex that we have already discussed in this article.


A recommended method to relieve vaginal dryness is to opt for a chemical-free lubricant.

Lubricants, such as one that’s naturally made, provide relief in dry skin, specifically the vaginal area.

Use only pure, high-quality lubricant with zero chemicals that may cause irritation or worse, medical problems.

Should the painful sensation get worse during sex, it’s best to seek medical help to determine any underlying issue.