Is pain during anal sex normal?

Is pain during anal sex normal?

It does not matter whether it is a man or a woman, the anus is an organ that works the same way for all people. Or at least it should be, and thus explorations of sexual pleasure have led many, regardless of their sexual orientation, to get engaged in anal penetration.

Since it is a sphincter and has very little lubrication, it is not uncommon for anal sex to be painful. This may be because the person is not relaxed enough or has not been given adequate time to adjust to penetration.

Pain during this practice may be present, but it should not always be, nor should it be so intense that it turns the situation into suffering rather than pleasure. In fact, there is already a name for excessive pain on anal penetration: anodyspareunia.

What does it mean?

It should be remembered that the word “dyspareunia” is a medical term that refers to persistent pain during vaginal penetration. For this case, the prefix “anus” was added to specify that the pain occurs in that other part of the body.

As explained by the website, specialized in HIV, as in the vagina, anal pain can be related to many different reasons, both physical and psychological. In addition, it does not only occur when trying to penetrate the anus with the penis, it could also arise if a sex toy or even just the fingers are used.

Let’s start from the idea that the person in pain does want to have anal penetration (otherwise, there is no reason for this practice), but the pain is so intense that it prevents him / her from continuing, what can be done?

Physical factors

The anus has the ability to open and to close, but it may happen that this action occurs abruptly, or with a larger size than usual. This can cause the sensitive sphincter muscles to be injured, leading to injuries so severe that they can cause an anal fissure.

Injuries may be due to the size of the partner’s penis, the size of the sex toy, or the intensity of penetration with either. But ultimately, the pain is due to two main factors: lack of preparation/stimulation and lack of lubrication. Of course, there must also be adequate sexual arousal and a large dose of relaxation, which reaches the muscles of that delicate area.

Psychological factors

Just as important are the problems that the mind can have regarding anal penetration. Fear of possible pain, even before experiencing pain, is an important factor. When feeling fear, the muscles tense, and if that happens in the anal sphincter it will be very difficult to insert anything without pain.

But the tension can also be due to other negative thoughts, such as guilt, which would be dictated by judgments that anal sex is “inappropriate”, “immoral” or “dirty”. In addition to this, the person could be feeling guilty, for example, for not using a condom in a practice that implies a good dose of risk of contracting HIV (or other sexually transmitted infections).

At the same time, there could be anxiety, insecurity, or lack of trust in the sexual partner, so the experience would still be physically difficult and painful.

A problem that has a solution

The specialists consulted by (doctors and sex educators) point out that anodyspareunia is a condition that can be managed and overcome. The first steps, which are also quite logical, consist in using a good lubricant and learning to breathe to relax during sex.

To be more specific, the anus has virtually no natural lubrication, so an intimate lubricant will make a big difference. On the other hand, breathing and relaxing the tension, concentrating especially on the anal sphincter, will help you enjoy penetration more.

We could add that the correct use of a condom, especially if it is a resistant one (of those that the manufacturers classify as for “rough sex”), would provide greater peace of mind and perhaps it would be easier to relax knowing that you have protection.

And finally, it never hurts to visit the doctor if you have any questions about how to manage pain. If the problem of anodyspareunia is physical, a doctor will solve it, and if it is a psychological conflict, you can find a sex therapist to help you overcome this.

Remember, both anal and vaginal penetration is better practiced with a condom, so you avoid infections and enjoy it some more. Come to AHF Latin America and the Caribbean where we offer you free condoms, as well as free HIV tests. Locate our nearest office in your country.