Vulvodynia is a chronic, unexplained pain in the area around the opening of the vagina. It can be unbearable and embarrassing. Symptoms include:
constant or intermittent pain
burning or itching sensations
rawness in the genital area
pain without or with triggers such as wiping, wearing a tampon, sex, sitting or wearing tight fitting clothes. Vulvodynia affects 8% to 16% of American women. Thankfully acupuncture can help.
So what is vulvodynia (vulval pain)?
According to the Vulval Pain Society, vulvodynia is pain in the hair-bearing region at the front (pubis area) and extends as far as the area around the anus.Before vulvodynia is diagnosed, other causes of vulvar burning must be excluded. These include
fungal, bacterial and viral infections
inflammatory dermatoses such as lichen sclerosus and lichen planus
contact sensitivity and eczema
lesions such as surgical scars and recurrent fissuring
How to manage at home?
avoid irritants such as tight-fitting clothing, perfumes, and dyes.
avoid abrasive activities, such as biking, or horse riding.
oral and topical medications
According to research, 60% of women with vulvodynia experience vaginismus, 57% have difficulty reaching orgasm and 51% struggle with low sexual desire. Vulval conditions can therefore lead to the avoidance of sexual activities all together.
Acupuncture for vulvodynia
Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine are a safe, effective method to alleviate the pain and calm anxiety.
Don't be scared
The way our method works best is to receive acupuncture treatments 2-3 times weekly for at least 12 weeks. Some folks need more treatment depending on the severity their problem.
The needles are not placed anywhere near the vulva, so you don’t have to worry about feeling needles inserted into an area that is in pain.
Rather we place extremely thin needles in the arms and legs and maybe the abdomen or your back in order to treat the pain.
Studies prove it works
Reports of vulvar pain and dyspareunia were significantly reduced, whereas changes in the aggregate FSFI scores suggest significant improvement in sexual functioning in those receiving acupuncture vs. those who did not.
Chinese herbs taken internally help to stop the pain, alleviate anxiety, reduce inflammation, and cool heat.
Diet can also play a large part in the healing process, so we discuss what you are eating and drinking and make recommendations of foods which will help promote free flow of energy and reduce inflammation.
No matter where you are in your
woman's health, fertility, pregnancy & mothering journey,
if you need support, we can help.
In addition to our own team of fertility & women's health acupuncturists, we are well-connected within the Los Angeles- Pasadena area community to help you find the right integrative and holistic care for you.
If you have more questions please call our front desk, at 626-841-2991, or email us.