I am happy to host another guest article discussing Vaginismus. This one delves into the Netflix series ‘Sex Education’ to highlight how important sexual knowledge is for everyone.
Searches for Vaginismus reach all-time High Following the Sex Education Series
It gave us all sexual knowledge we didn’t know we needed…
After a long-awaited year, season 3 of Sex Education finally dropped on September 17 and we’re not ashamed to admit that we binged it immediately. The first season’s debut saw over 40 million views – so we weren’t surprised to see fans ready to dive into the new season. From topics such as vaginismus to abstinence, the female orgasm to fantasy kinks – Sex Education season 3 opened up a whole realm of sexual topics that are important for everyone adult to understand. Evidently, the topics discussed on the show have an impact on its audience; the month season 2 was released in 2020, ‘vaginismus’ searches on Google soared to an all-time high; skyrocketing again in September as it was discussed on season 3.
Fans were eager to find out if Otis and Maeve finally admit their feelings for one another, whether Jean will tell Jakob about her pregnancy and how Eric and Adams relationship will develop after their very public display of emotion during the school play. We’re happy to say that we got all the goss we were looking for!
Although the show is extremely entertaining, funny and racy, it raises many topics and questions that are extremely important for teenagers and young adults to discuss as they start to determine their sexuality, sexual desires and when exploring their own body.
During season 2, it was determined that the reason Lily couldn’t have sex was due to vaginismus – something she had absolutely no idea about until Otis’ trusty sex clinic came along. Otis and Lily then had a really supportive chat during season 3 where they touched on the topic again after she’s recovered well and started enjoying sex with Ola – evidently the cause for such high Google searches. If you haven’t watched Sex Education you may be wondering exactly what vaginismus is due to the lack of general awareness.
According to Sh! Women’s Superstore, who focus heavily on spreading awareness about the condition, vaginismus is “the term used to describe recurrent or persistent involuntary tightening of muscles around the vagina whenever penetration is attempted.” The condition is most common in women aged between 26-35, but can affect women of all ages.
The symptoms may include burning or stinging upon penetration, an intense fear of sex or a loss of desire upon penetration. Due to vaginismus being a complex psychosomatic condition, the causes can range from variety of negative sexual experiences including a painful first intercourse, intense fear of pregnancy, the belief that sex is wrong or extremely traumatic experiences such as sexual abuse.
At least 2 in 1,000 women experience Vaginismus once in their lifetime – but due to the nature of the condition, some women may feel too embarrassed to confide in their friends, family or GP. However, the condition has a 95% chance of being treated through forms of sexual therapy, CBT, topical therapy as well as various other forms of medical treatment depending on the cause. Therapy can help patients to overcome the condition whilst also helping them to understand that this condition is nothing to be embarrassed or ashamed of.
Sh! Women’s Superstore have created a national awareness day in honour of the condition, aiming to raise awareness about vaginismus, to help encourage women to seek help and to break the stigma around the condition. Not only does the condition impact sex, it can interfere with all aspects of life such as gynecological examinations, the use of period products and even childbirth.
Sh! are delighted to see Sex Eduction delivering entertainment as well as some top sexual educational for all of it’s listeners. After all, touching on important issues on a trending show is a great way to encourage teenagers and young adults to get to know their bodies more – as well as to normalise conditions such as vaginismus.
If you have any of the symptoms of vaginismus, don’t be afraid to contact your GP or gynaecologist today.
Header image from Marcus Winkler – Unsplash