Reluctant to use dialators

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    I have been recently diagnosed with vaginismus and I am struggling with using the dialators. I have made up to number 3 and feel reluctant to use number 4 after a painful attempt. I feel a block and feel anxious when using them and can’t relax. Is this normal and will be something that will pass?


    Hi Lizzie22 – first of all, congratulations on reaching the 3rd dilator! This is a big accomplishment in and of itself that should be acknowledged.

    It’s very normal for transitions into some of the larger dilators to be more difficult, but the best thing you can do is not let the worry get to you. Know that treating vaginismus isn’t a straightforward, predictable process, and that you can’t know how long it will take. If you’re feeling anxious and can’t relax, this won’t necessarily pass since your anxiety will often build the more you dread using that dilator, so it’s best to rebuild your comfort and confidence with the dilators.

    If you are having trouble with the 4th dilator, it’s better to go back to working with the 3rd one (or whichever can be inserted comfortably) for awhile to help regain some confidence. Once you can get one in with relative ease, make sure you can insert it and remove it a few times, and try wiggling it around a bit inside just to loosen up your muscles. Then try inserting a larger size right afterward, which should make it easier. Eventually you’ll be able to start with the larger size.

    Confidence with dilating takes time – it’s hard not to get anxious and worry you’re not progressing fast enough, but it’s SO important to take the time you need!



    I completely agree with recessivegenequeen’s suggestions. Definitely go back to the previous dilator and work with it for longer before trying again. Feeling pain, discomfort, and other feelings like anxiety and wanting to give up is completely normal when dilating and trying a bigger size. I went through this a lot during my time with dilators, but I eventually got through all dilators!

    Continue to be consistent and don’t get discouraged if you’re not moving as quickly through the dilators as you’d like! When I got pain from dilating it was usually because I wasn’t quite ready for that size (or of course if I wasn’t using enough lubricant). I went at a very slow and steady pace with the dilators and it worked for me. Watching TV while dilating also helped me relax a bit and not solely concentrate on the dilating/pain. Also try deep breathing exercises and moving it in very slowly the first time!

    Remember that whatever pain you’re feeling is temporary and it’s the muscles getting used to something they’re not used to (I’m not in the medical field but that’s what I think)!

    Also, I’ve tried a couple different lubricants and I like coconut oil the best. Use of a vibrator also helped me with some discomfort!

    Definitely keep at it and you’ll regain your confidence. Good luck and keep us posted!

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