Couple Sex Therapy Uses - sexual pain disorders

Sexual Pain disorders 

Many sexual pain disorders can cause pain and discomfort during sexual intercourse. Therefore, they are considered to be one of the reasons couples have problems during sex which can be improved after undergoing Couple Sex Therapy which includes Sensate Focus.

Male Sexual Pain Disorders

Peyronie's disease 

This condition results from the formation of penis scar tissue that can cause abnormal curvature or bending and painful erections.

Female Sexual Pain Disorders


Vaginismus is a condition that causes involuntary muscle spasms during sexual intercourse. The psychologically dependent condition disrupts penis-vaginal penetration as the vaginal muscles contract resulting in pain while attempting penile penetration. 


Dyspareunia or painful sexual intercourse caused by conditions such as:

Atrophic Vaginitis

In this condition, there is thinning and drying of the vaginal walls along with possible inflammation. One of the most common causes of Atrophic Vaginitis is the drop in the production of estrogen, such as during menopause. Due to the lack of lubrication, vaginal penetration can cause discomfort and pain.

Vestibulodynia or Vulvodynia

These conditions result in chronic vaginal opening pain-causing intense discomfort and pain when sitting, or during sexual intercourse.

Internal Cystitis

This condition refers to chronic and painful inflammation of the bladder. The symptoms experienced by the patient include bladder and pelvic pain and pressure which can cause individuals to deter away from sexual intercourse.

Pelvic Floor Hypertonus

In this condition, the pelvic floor muscles are unable to relax causing symptoms such as pain during sex, constipation, and pelvic pain.

Vulvar Dermatological Conditions

Skin conditions such as folliculitis, contact dermatitis, lichen sclerosus, and Bartholin gland cysts fall under this category. Due to the discomfort, inflammation, and possible pain caused by these conditions, sex is commonly avoided.


This is a disorder in which uterine tissue grows outside of the uterus such as in the ovaries, intestine, and/or the fallopian tubes. Endometriosis causes symptoms such as menstrual pain and irregularities, pain during defecating and sexual intercourse, and in some cases, infertility.

Relationship Concerns

Good sex and good relationships go hand-in-hand. In fact, seldom do couples who have major relationship concerns experience a good sexual relationship - the opposite stands as well. Sexual intimacy encompasses both physical and emotional aspects and is commonly the glue that can bond the couple and improve relationships. 

There are many concerns - physical and emotional - that can cause a drift in a marriage. While there is a stigma on speaking up about marital problems, many experts encourage couples to consider therapy. Often, couples don't realize how problems in a marriage can affect their sex life and sexual health. Here are some common concerns that could disrupt intimacy between couples.

- Lack of communication
- Sexual dysfunctions or disorders
- Substance or alcohol abuse
- Infidelity or domestic abuse

Good relationships include many parts and the following are some tips that can help improve you and your partners’  physical, mental, emotional, and sexual health.

- Engage in judgement-free communication
- Be willing to resolve conflict
- Prioritise emotional intimacy
- Engage in operational intimacy: opening up to your partner about your daily life experiences
- Communicate and mutually decide on recreation/Breeding
- Be willing to intergenerational conflict resolution: this includes concerns that are associated with extended family members that can take a toll on the couple.

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Erectile Dysfunction
Erectile Dysfunction

Erectile Dysfunction is defined as the inability to sustain an erection sufficient for sexual intercourse. The condition can affect anyone at any age.


Remember - the blood flow (BF), the nerve supply, and the balance of sex hormones - a concern in any of these can lead to Erectile Dysfunction. Erectile Dysfunction can be caused by a physical (a ‘hardware’ problem) or psychological (mental health effects) - mental health can play a huge part.

Fact Check

Did you know that Erectile Dysfunction can be an indication of cardiovascular concerns? Chronic health conditions affecting blood flow can lead to Erectile Dysfunction.

Premature Ejaculation
Premature Ejaculation

If a man lasts less than 2 minutes after penetration (all or most of the time), and/or if it leads to frequent dissatisfaction for him or his partner, he may have Premature Ejaculation.


The causes of Premature Ejaculation include:
(1) Physical Factors: Medical conditions, chronic health conditions, or sexual disorders are some physical causes of Premature Ejaculation.
(2) Psychological Factors: Depression, Anxiety 

Fact Check

Did you know that Erectile Dysfunction can be a cause of Premature Ejaculation?

Premature Ejaculation can lead to other sexual dysfunctions, but that is not a wide-known fact.


Vaginismus is a condition in which the muscles in the vagina tighten up during penetration.


Vaginismus is commonly caused by psychological factors. Women don't have control over the tightening, and it can be uncomfortable. Due to the physical discomfort, the anxiety or fear response gets worse, and this can lead to a cycle of avoidance.

Fact Check

Did you know that there are four types of Vaginismus?

(1) Primary Vaginismus

(2) Secondary Vaginismus

(3) Situational Vaginismus

(4) Global Vaginismus

Low Sexual Desire
Low Sexual Desire

Low sexual desire, commonly referred to as low libido, is a decrease in sex drive.


Individuals that experience low sexual desire due to various causes are impacted physically, mentally, and emotionally by the symptoms the condition can cause.

Fact Check

Like other most common sexual disorders, low sexual desire can be influenced by many aspects, such as hormonal imbalance, increased age, side effects of medications, chronic illnesses, and addictive or compulsive behavior.

Couple Sex Problems
Couple Sex Problems

This would include concerns with infertility and/or conception. Sexual disorders such as Erectile Dysfunction, Premature Ejaculation, and Vaginismus can lead to challenges with pregnancy attempts.


There could be various causes of infertility, such as sexual dysfunctions, chronic illnesses, and mental health conditions leading to low sexual desire and a low sperm count. A sexual health professional should evaluate the causes of failed pregnancy attempts because there can be a variety of causes.

Fact Check
Porn Addiction
Porn Addiction

Porn addiction refers to a person becoming excessively dependent on pornography leading to a disruption in their everyday life. This could include their job, relationships and at times, their day-to-day lifestyle.


The causes behind porn addiction could be:

(1) Negative sexual experiences

(2) Incorrect understanding of porn and its uses

(3) Initially trying to learn about sexual experiences, resulted in dependency

(4) Experiencing mental health disorders such as OCD (an anxiety disorder) or depression

Fact Check

Watching porn isn’t a bad thing, nor should it be associated with any shame. However, compulsive porn watching can have negative effects on your sexual, physical and mental health.

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