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When I pee my vagina burns. What is going on?

Q.
When I pee my vagina burns. Also, after sex it hurts really bad. What is going on?
A.

Hi there. It's quite likely that you have a bladder infection, which would cause a sting when you pee. You might need antibiotics to get rid of it, if it's an infection.

When women are having sex, their bladder can get knocked around a bit by the penis inside. This can mean that germs that are normal and not a problem in the back passage (anus/arse hole) can be spread near the entrance of your urethra (where the pee comes out). Unfortunately these germs can cause a bladder infection. Some women find it helps to pee before sex, drink plenty of fluids and to make sure that they wipe from front to back on the toilet (so they're not spreading the germs towards the urethra).

This might explain why sex hurts but I think it would be good to have a sexual health check up with a doctor too, because some STIs, like chlamydia, can cause inflammation and swelling inside the vagina and the womb and this causes pain with sex. Chlamydia is easy to test for (just a urine test or swab) and is easy to treat with antibiotics.

If you're somewhere isolated, you may not have a youth health centre or women's health centre close by (but it's worth checking in the phone book or on the internet). I've listed one service below that you could start with. If not, any doctor can do these tests and treatment. Some of these services can be no charge but I’m not sure (I’m in Australia). If not, any doctor can do these tests and treatment. You are old enough to see a doctor on your own but you may have to pay for the appointment and the medicine. Ask about costs when you ring for an appointment. Can you talk to your parents to see if they might help?

Both guys and girls may have chlamydia and not notice any symptoms. It's important to treat both the woman and her partner (so she doesn't catch it back) because chlamydia can cause scarring inside the woman, which makes it hard to fall pregnant in the future (because the tubes get blocked). Chlamydia is very easy to catch if no condoms are used, so if you're having sex in the future, make sure you use one every time.

Good luck with getting better, and remember that you are worth looking after!

Last modified: 15th August 2011
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