Why Do I Have a Numb Vagina?
why is my vagina numb

Why Do I Have a Numb Vagina?

A numb vagina is not a sign that you’re broken. Nor does it make you less of a woman. It does, however, reflect the state of your relationship with your womanhood. Moreover, it mirrors society’s relationship with female sexuality as a whole. Acceptance and exploration of female pleasure is a relatively new phenomenon that’s pushing back on the vaginal shaming that tells us “down there” is a dark and dirty place.

Numb vaginas are therefore largely a product of social conditioning that devalues a woman’s sexuality. Rape culture doesn’t help, as news of physical assault is routinely exposed and the female body seems to be permanently under threat. It’s no wonder a woman might want to disassociate from her sexuality, and yet the pelvic floor is where her power lies. It’s also where her pleasure lies.

Numb genitals are therefore largely a product of social conditioning that devalues a woman’s sexuality.

Nevertheless, 90 percent of women say they experience orgasm through sexual stimulation, but rarely do so through vaginal penetration alone. Research may tell us men orgasm more easily than women, but this isn’t something you should accept without trying first to disprove it. Much of the work that needs to be done to re-sensitize a numb vagina involves unlearning everything you’ve been taught about your sexual anatomy. If you have a high sex drive and get aroused easily, but still feel nothing in your vagina, you just have to take the time to find your blocks and hot spots. What’s more, your blocks may not be biological.  

Am I Thinking My Vagina Numb?

The overriding messages conveyed in movies, the media and porn all portray sex, and the female body, in a way that’s hard to assimilate with the reality of what we experience. This can be both frustrating and confusing, leading many women to believe that they suffer from sexual dysfunction. If you’re unable to see yourself as a sexual being, even the most devoted and attentive partner will struggle to convince you otherwise. Since our bodies and their natural processes have so long been stigmatized, it can be difficult to decondition this thinking in ourselves. Consider finding for yourself safe spaces and communities that celebrate the female body in all its forms.

If you experience a sense of separation from your body, specifically your vagina, this sexual response could be a form of subconscious protection. A woman may expose her body during a sexual encounter without opening herself up emotionally or mentally. Yet psychological and physiological arousal cannot be separated.

Is My Vagina Traumatized?

The medical community considers low libido and lack of sensation to be a female sexual arousal disorder. Yet this isn’t always a medical condition. When a woman is aroused, the blood flow to her clitoris and vulva increases, which encourages vaginal lubrication and swelling in readiness for penetration. If, however, you’re penetrated before you’re ready, the vagina tenses, and repetitive tensing can lead to a numb vagina—but you can undo this damage by rebuilding a sense of trust in your body’s ability to receive pleasure without pain.   

Premature penetration, whether consensual or not, can impact your mental and emotional attitude towards sex, as well as your body’s physical response to it. In fact, any distressing experience associated with the pelvic floor, such as miscarriage, painful childbirth, or a relationship that was emotionally wounding, can leave the energetic scars of trauma that damage vaginal nerve endings.

The vagina is therefore largely perceived as a receiver, a passive organ, rather than an active creator.

Cultural perceptions of the female experience can also leave traumatic residue that blocks genital sensation. There is total separation between a woman who gives birth and a woman having sex. One is widely analyzed and the other is left in the delivery room. The vagina is therefore largely perceived as a receiver, a passive organ, rather than an active creator. But if you begin to see your vagina as a tool for creating your own pleasure, rather than simply receiving your partner’s, you can cultivate a shift in your own perceptions.

Counseling or talking therapy may help to uncover whatever is blocking your sensuality. Have you felt threatened or depressed; are you dealing with painful sexual memories; do you feel safe around your partner; or do you have intimacy issues? The answers to these questions will support the conversation that you’re beginning to have with your body.

How to Get Sensation Back to Your Vagina

When restoring sensation back to a numb vagina, you might want to bypass penile penetration altogether—if only for a while. You can bypass the need to achieve orgasm too, since focusing on climax detracts from the sensations that precede it. If possible, steer clear of fantasy and stay present with the physical experience. The vagina is essentially a muscle that can be massaged to release tension and increase blood flow.

Simply use your fingers or a toy to explore your vagina gently and consciously, concentrating on any areas that seem painful or tense. It’s not unusual to feel an energetic release of grief, trauma, or other stored emotion. If you need to make noise, cry, or even laugh, let it happen so you can let it go. It’s through this clearing process that you can discover your G-spot, cervix and A-spot—the full potential for pleasure that your vagina holds.  

Vaginal numbness is also associated with hormonal imbalance, menopause, multiple sclerosis, or cauda equina syndrome. If lack of sensation is accompanied by other worrying symptoms, please speak to your doctor.  

Featured image by Tim Goehart
A Monthly Experience Unlike Any Other. Shop Cora.
you may also like...

17 Responses to “Why Do I Have a Numb Vagina?”

Nicole Erickson

September 21, 2018 5:42 pm

I take so much umbrage with this article. This is victim blaming disguised as self-help. If a woman is experiencing numbness, the go-to diagnosis should NOT be that she doesn’t have a good relationship with her womanhood! With everything else I’m apparently doing wrong, I’m also bad at womanhood? This is such a damaging point of view. I my personal experience, it was due to a new medication I was prescribed, which is probably far more common and easier to address than “social conditioning that devalues a woman’s sexuality”. What is this author’s sources that back up her theory that vaginal numbness is caused by some imagined mental block on the woman’s part? She needed to start with her last paragraph, then perhaps stopped there as well.

Reply

Casey

January 30, 2019 10:46 am

> You should know the symptoms of your medication. I personally found this article very helpful.

Reply

A

February 03, 2019 1:50 pm

> she never said she didn’t know the symptoms of the medication.

Reply

Alexandria Lee

November 19, 2018 5:50 pm

Maybe a little bit TMI. But I’ve been with my partner for 4 years and this is just starting to happen to me. I can no longer feel pleasure during intercourse I’m only 20 years old this is very frustrating I’ve only been with one person sexually and I’m very concerned

Reply

Bloom

January 11, 2019 3:18 am

This is one of the most stupid arzicles ever. sorry to offend you, but it’s a fact. I am perfectly fine with my womanhood! Nobody shamed me and my sex for God’s sake! I hate to see constantly self-proclaimed sex coaches or women who pretend that every man is the fault of her own problems, that the only chance for hapiness and good health is a “female sexual revolution “. Wtf? I consider sex as something between me and my bf, not the entire public. Moreover, it bothers me that you’reu ubeing told that acting like a slut in public is embracing your sexuality. It apparently isn’t. How you act in your bedroom is your thing and it should be private. The pressure that the public makes that you’ re prectically a loser if you’re not supporting sucb circus is large. My numbness is not connected with not respecting myself or embracing my sexual nature. i enjoy sex, but it is my private stuff. The problem is my anxiety and maybe my body, but hey… Orasm is not thw most important thing in life. If a temporary feeling is that impkrtant to you than your own good and partner, than you have a problem

Reply

Hannah

February 09, 2019 3:23 pm

Some are saying the article is misinformed, but as someone who takes several non-optional medications, has a past of sexual trauma, and has a marriage to keep together, looking into the idea of having a relationship with my “womanhood” and using it as a tool for my pleasure instead one for receiving it from my partner is very insightful. I did grow up in that conservative Christian household that convinced me my vagina is a dark and dirty place. I’ve been in a safe, emotionally stable and supportive relationship for 4 years, and I keep cycling, struggling and re-struggling to get good feelings down there (forget about an orgasm). Recently some things that used to work have stopped and that worries me. I want to believe this is something I can fix, and addressing it as something personal and psychological is MUCH more helpful than the doctors I talk to that say I’m “just doing it wrong” or to “try some lube”. Just because you don’t agree with the perspective of the article, doesn’t mean it’s a bad perspective.

Reply

Smittenkitten

March 21, 2019 12:34 pm

I need help.
I read trough everything and can’t seem to associate myself with it. Although I think u might gave a problem. I feel little to no pleasure from my vagina. This is scary since I have never had intercorse. I fear I have no feeling down there apart from my clit.

Reply

Agnes

March 22, 2019 3:38 pm

Obvously, the auther is putting out possible external and internal causes of this problem. I believe any woman with vaginal numbness reading about this might find some aspect of the article they might relate to in some way. If you don’t identify with the authors suggestions and you have better ones please share, don’t try to tear down the messenger because you are depriving people of the chance to explore for solutions to these real problems. I believe there is truth in the suggestion that hormone levels may be related. Perhaps poor circulation and stress may be related in some way? Finally, I cannot imagine anyone who has ever had an orgasm not take notice when they stop having one. It is not for pleasure only,( eating chocolate gives me pleasure). For me an orgasm, goes beyond. It has a lot of benefits from feeling of welbeing beyond the intimacy, to release of stress which I don’t get from other excercise. I had. I believe the reason an orgasm is also called climax is that not reaching climax sometime can lead to feeling of incompletion, disconnection and disinterest for one or both partners, and if more partners are able to attain it together may enjoy the process in a more healthy way and perhaps not abandon it altogether or resort to using devices or even unhealthy and dangerous methods. I also don’t like having sex with myself.
My lack of sensation started after my second c- section after the birth of my daughter, it got back on track after I started using Premarin which had been originally prescribed for me for low estrogen leading to dryness. I really don’t like long term medication use so I rarely used it then stopped. I do strongly believe hormone imbalance is the cause of my problem (even though my labs never confirm it) because nothing but the premarin cream helps. Trolls please stay away and let the discussions flow towards positive results for those seeking solutions and those who can offer them. Best of luck to everyone truly looking for answers.

Reply

Beth

April 02, 2019 12:59 pm

> I also do not enjoy masturbation. It took me years to finally experience an orgasm. Finally my sex life was exciting and pleasurable. I wanted it all the time.

Then I got pregnant. 1 vaginal delivery and 2 c sections. After my last c section all enjoyability is gone. Its been almost 6 years. I dont ever want sex im always disappointed, my husband is at his wits end.

There has to be something topical we could use to sensitize our clitoris. Has anyone ever used anything that works. Years ago (like 10) I found these tiny purple ampules in a sex shop that were magic. Thats when I had my 1st actual orgasm but I can’t remember the name of the product and the store has since closed.

Reply

Petite Mort

April 05, 2019 11:12 am

It’s okay to not write a perfect article. I have never found an article that made this clear, “Premature penetration, whether consensual or not, can impact your mental and emotional attitude towards sex, as well as your body’s physical response to it. In fact, any distressing experience associated with the pelvic bowl, such as miscarriage, painful childbirth, or a relationship that was emotionally wounding, can leave the energetic scars of trauma that damage vaginal nerve endings.” and I am very happy I have found evidence to prove that sexual trauma can cause numbness… but like anytime I have sex before my body is actually ready I am essentially re-creating the sexual trauma I have experienced when i do not realize that I can speak up and say i am not quite ready and that I need time and foreplay. D you know how man “feminist men” don’t know that it feels like rape & numbness every time they penetrate too early? So i dont care what mistakes this article makes, it points that fact out. So i am incredibly thankful.

Reply

Elly

May 05, 2019 5:24 am

So many people tearing down this article but I thought it was good, the first time I was with a man, I came in about 10/20 seconds, it felt amazing – he told me I can’t too quick and needed to try not to do that next time – that was the last time I came – 10 years ago

Reply

Bjorni

May 22, 2019 5:36 pm

I developed vaginal numbness and 100% sexual dysfunction 10 years ago. It happened months after I had pelvic inflammatory disease. After searching for an answer for 8 years a neurologist finally found significant inflammation behind my sacrum which is irritating my impar ganglion and I also have inflammation along my pudendal nerves bilaterally. This explains why I have this numbness. So yes, there can be something VERY wrong if you have this symptom. It is not normal to not feel pleasure sensation, especially if you have felt it before.

Reply

Fran

May 25, 2019 5:52 am

I have recently heard about wild yam cream. Apply it topically on your body. This helps to adjust hormone levels. I’m going to give it a try.

Reply

Bridget

June 18, 2019 7:46 am

I love this write up but mine is different, I can’t reach orgasm through penetration, its only wen I’m touched in my clit how can I change it

Reply

Nadia

July 07, 2019 11:34 am

I’ve been never been able to experience sexual pleasure. I’ve spoken to a gynecologist about this, she told me it might be because I’m still young and prescribed me “lady prelox”. I’ve been using it for months now but there hasn’t been any change. I’ve seen another doctor did scans and nothing has changed . I’m 24 years of age I have a loving and respectful partner. I eat healthy live healthy. I don’t have much stress besides not being able to enjoy the pleasure of intimacy. I don’t know where to go from here. I could really do with professional help. That’s actually going to work. At the moment I’m wasting my time and money on doctor’s who aren’t helping me much ????

Reply

D

August 27, 2019 9:18 am

Vaginal steaming with the right holistic practitioner can really help with numbness <3

Reply

Anna

September 11, 2019 1:48 am

Completely agree with the comment at the top (Nicole Erickson Sept. 21, 2018 5:42 PM). This is NOT how female bodies work! Vaginal numbness is not our fault! Nor is pain during intercourse – it is not psychological, it’s because it’s one of the most sensitive parts of the body. I suffered from terrible genital numbness due to antidepressants, and it did not entirely go away in _years_ after I gave up the medication. Female sexual dysfunction is NOT psychological! Yet it’s always, always psychologised. I have always loved my body, always loved sex. I love penetrative sex more than anything. I was desperate to find out how to overcome the numbness, and the doctors were not helpful, mostly trying and trying to find some psychological reasons why I didn’t “want” to have sex or why I was “tired” of having sex or whatever. I thought my sex life was ruined forever. Now, with several years of recovery, and the help of a couple of amazing lovers, I’m finally very nearly back to pre-medication sex. Some things are still not the same (for example, I know orgasm 1/3 times from penetration alone when it used to be every time), but others have improved more (vaginal stimulation just feels more and more amazing and in more positions).

Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *