Living with Lichen Sclerosus & orgasms
On July 31st it was National Orgasm day, and of course I wouldn’t just let it go by without talking about Lichen Sclerosus, even though I am a couple of days late to the party.
I posted a poll on my stories the other day, asking you if since being diagnosed with Lichen Sclerosus you’ve had a harder time achieving orgasm (clitoral orgasm), the majority of you, sadly, said yes.
In fact, many of us suffering from Lichen Sclerosus experience secondary anorgasmia, meaning it’s harder for us to achieve orgasms. The fusing and scaring of the clitoral hood (the little part that covers the clitoris) may result in covering the clitoris, resulting in reduced sensitivity.
Furthermore, according to some research, women with Lichen Sclerosus are less sexually active, have orgasms less frequently and have lower sexual satisfaction levels. This makes me wonder – is this due to the fact that we feel uncomfortable having sex, that we don’t see the point with it because we can’t achieve orgasm as easily, or that we are in pain?
And since we’ve been programmed from the beginning of time that orgasm is what you want to achieve during sex (because is it sex if the end product isn’t orgasm?), this (yes another thing) might make you feel less of a woman. Which, I’m gonna let you in on a secret, is NOT TRUE.
But let’s be honest here, how many times have you heard a doctor say “sex can be great without orgasm”, and you’ve just rolled your eyes? I dare you. Do Not Roll Your Eyes At Me Now.
The truth is, the clitoris is more than just the “bead”. There are so many nerve endings happening in that area, so any kinda of touch can be an explosive kinda touch.
Some tips & tricks from yours truly:
Explore your own body
Stretch your adductors (inner thighs) – (in the yoga world they say this might alleviate difficulty achieving orgasm) – if I find research on this I’ll let you know. But it doesn’t hurt to try does it?
Massage your inner thighs – (how does it feel?) Also, many physiotherapists specializing in pelvic pain says this is great for a hyper tonic pelvic floor.
Talk to your partner – communication is super important. If you need help on how to talk to your partner, please reach out.
This is an important one – Take your time. Often we rush because we want an orgasm happen like in the movies, like BAM! It will not….
Are you sure your clitoris is completely gone? (I’m sorry if anyone is offended by this, but it’s actually a thing) Have a feel yourself. You know your body best.
Check out this post from Pelvic Guru of anatomy of the clitoris
Pérez-López, F. and Vieira-Baptista, P. (2017). Lichen sclerosus in women: a review. Climacteric, 20(4), pp.339-347.
Haefner HK, Aldrich NZ, Dalton VK, et al. The impact of vulvar lichen sclerosus on sexual dysfunction. J Womens Health (Larchmt) 2014;23:765–70
Van De Nieuwenhof HP, Meeuwis KAP, Nieboer TE, Vergeer MCM, Massuger LFAG, De Hullu JA. The effect of vulvar lichen sclerosus on quality of life and sexual functioning. J Psychosom Obstet Gynaecol 2010;31:279–84 Howard, L., 2017. Pelvic Liberation. [California]: [Leslie Howard Yoga].
With love, Penny