Lubrication is vital when treating conditions such as dyspareunia (painful intercourse) or vaginismus (involuntary contraction of muscles around the vagina). A good lubricant can control friction, reduce vaginal dryness, help with comfort with postpartum intercourse, and prevent irritation of vaginal tissues. In no particular order, here are the lubricants we recommend the most.
Best Lubricants Recommended in Pelvic Physical Therapy
Good Clean Love uses safe and natural ingredients. Their products are water-based and some even contain aloe, which can be very soothing to irritated tissues.
We use this brand in the clinic because it comes in giant pump bottles! It can be a good, basic lubricant that is water-based and easy to use. It can get a little goopy or sticky, so watch out for that.
Sliquid is 100% vegan friendly and is also water based. They have an aloe product as well. Sliquid tends to be a little thinner than some of the other brands, and can be a little messy. Start with a small amount.
This is a silicone-based lubricant so it’s important to note it should not be used with other silicone products such as vaginal dilators. Uberlube is very long lasting. It also has a thin consistency, so make sure to start with a little.
I love Desert Harvest’s aloe-based lubricant for my patients with vaginal dryness, vaginal atrophy, or those who are postmenopausal. They also offer a lubricant that contains lidocaine which I sometimes recommend in certain cases.
Another natural lubricant you can use is olive oil or coconut oil. These are often oils you already have around their house, so they are very accessible without special ordering. I have seen good results with fractionated coconut oil. Do not use oil with latex condoms as this can affect the integrity of the condom.
Not all lubricants are created Equal!
Here are some ingredients to avoid:
Parabens – Used as an artificial preservative. This can cause allergic reactions, especially in those with sensitive tissues.
Phthalates – these have been linked to breast cancer in women. Most lubricants will advertise that they are free from these.
Glycerin – this is an ingredient that could lead to an overgrowth of yeast. If you are prone to yeast infections, this might be an important ingredient to avoid.
One more to possibly avoid – lidocaine. I say possibly because there are times it is recommended. I would definitely talk with your PT or healthcare provider prior to using lidocaine in lubrication. We don’t want it to further irritate tissues, or for it to cause too much numbness.
Worried about sensitivities? Try this first
If you are very sensitive and want to play it safe, I would highly recommend starting with a water-based lubricant with the fewest ingredients possible. Water-based don’t tend to last quite as long, but it’s okay if you need to reapply continuously throughout your pelvic floor therapy exercises, or throughout intercourse.
Even if you have never checked ingredients before, it is important to look at the ingredients in your lubricant so you know what you are putting in your body. I have seen issues that were seemingly coming from the pelvic floor completely resolve after switching from an irritating lubricant. Your lubrication should not burn, sting, cause itching, or cause odor! If it does, try something different.
If you have any questions, please reach out! We do free 15 minute phone consultations to see if pelvic floor physical therapy is right for you. You do not have to live in Northwest Arkansas to give us a call.
Do you currently use lubrication? Which lubricants work best for you? Leave a comment below!
#pelvichealth #dyspareunia #vaginismus #physicaltherapy