Symptoms of Primary Vaginismus:
If at ‘first-time’ intercourse, full sexual penetration seems physically impossible despite repeated attempts — almost as though there is no opening where the vaginal opening is supposed to be — it indicates Primary Vaginismus in over 99% of cases. Although sometimes it may seem like there is partial penetration, typically the tip of the penis just presses into the fleshy outer vulva area, not into the vagina. Vaginismus is nearly always responsible for unconsummated marriages due to the female partner. They often mistakenly wonder if they are physically abnormal in some way; whether their vagina is too small, their hymen is blocking the opening or they have no vaginal hole at all. This is understandable, for when vaginal muscles are tightened it may seem like the opening is unusually tiny or non-existent
There are two other early symptom indicators of Primary Vaginismus that are sometimes, but not always experienced prior to intercourse attempts:
Some young women have difficulty inserting tampons, even after repeated attempts.
Some women find it very challenging to allow their physician to complete an internal vaginal exam with a speculum or finger due to a tight opening (may appear to the physician as unusually small).
Symptoms of Secondary Vaginismus:
Unexplained, ongoing sexual tightness and discomfort following a negative (usually pelvic) experience almost always indicates Secondary Vaginismus. Though there was a previous history of normal intercourse and the negative pelvic experience was resolved, the ongoing tightness, pain and discomfort eventually causes a couple to discontinue sex.
Typically this type of vaginismus is triggered by a temporary physical pelvic medical condition, trauma, or pelvic-pain issue. Examples could include a urinary tract or other pelvic infection; a difficult delivery with stitches required; age-related changes like a hormonal/lubrication reduction after menopause; rape or assault; a pause of many years between spouses; or another similar occurrence. The ongoing tightness is perplexing. Women wonder why it would continue to be difficult or impossible to have sex, even though the initial problem had healed, resolved or was fully treated.