For people with a vagina who experience pain with intercourse or penetration, vaginal dilators can be an effective form of therapy.
Vaginal dilators are medical devices that can be used to help reduce pain and potentially anxiety around penetration. They are usually safe and effective, and can be used to help treat a variety of conditions.
A vaginal dilator is also sometimes called an insert. It’s a plastic or silicone rod or cylinder with a rounded end that is inserted into the vagina to help stretch the tissues. Inserting it can also help train people to relax or strengthen their pelvic floor muscles.
A dilator can come in many sizes, but they’re often about 4 inches long and vary in width. They’re often used to help reduce the pain and anxiety that some people with sexual pain syndromes feel with, or in anticipation of, sexual intercourse.
Vaginal dilators often come in kits that include a range of dilators at different widths, from very narrow to thick.
As the vaginal tissues become more flexible, you can begin using wider dilators to become progressively more comfortable with larger sizes.