Tears in the vagina can be uncomfortable and painful. They could happen with sexual activity, using tampons, having another medical condition, or having a baby. Most vaginal tears are minimal and will heal on their own, only tears that occur during childbirth may need stitches. Many vaginal tears will heal on their own as long as you keep the area clean, avoid sex, and avoid irritating the tear. You should see a doctor for deeper tears to have them sewn up.
Table of Contents
- 1 Treating cracks formed at the birth of a child
- 2 Reduce pain
- 3 Treat minor cracks
- 4 Have cracks treated medically
Treating cracks formed at the birth of a child
Determine what type of tear you have.
There are four types of tears you might get while having a baby. First-degree tears are thin tears in the skin. Second-degree tears are tears that affect the skin and muscles. These are the two most harmless types of cracks. Third-degree tears also affect the muscles of the perineum (perineum) and anal canal. Fourth-degree tears also affect the anal canal and rectum.
Any vaginal tears made during childbirth will require stitches. The doctor will place small stitches along the tear for first and second-degree tears. Third and fourth-degree tears require more fancy stitching. With these, each muscle and skin layer must be sewn separately. For third- and fourth-degree tears, the doctor will focus on suturing the muscles holding the anus and rectum in place.
Keep the area clean.
You should keep the area clean no matter how deep the crack is. This can help reduce bacteria and prevent infection. Wash your vaginal and rectal areas several times a day. Blot the area with a clean hand towel. Make sure you dry yourself from front to back so bacteria from the rectal area don’t get into the vagina.
Change the bandage often.
Make sure to change the bandage or panty liners every four to six hours. This helps keep the wound clean and reduces the risk of bacteria.
Avoid clogging to reduce pressure on the area.
Constipation can make the pain or injury worse. To prevent this, take stool softeners. Also, drink plenty of fluids and eat a high-fiber diet.
Try a cold compress.
Cold compresses help reduce pain and inflammation in the affected area. Don’t put the ice or cold compress directly on your skin. Instead, wrap a towel around it to protect your skin from frostbite. Hold the compress on your skin for about 10 minutes. Place it on your perineum area for a few hours.
Take over-the-counter pain relievers.
If the tear is causing you pain, try an over-the-counter pain reliever. Acetaminophen, ibuprofen, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can help reduce pain and discomfort. Be sure to read the labels and use the medication only as directed.
Rest every hour.
You should take things easy with a vaginal tear, especially after childbirth. If you have deep tears, only stand or sit for short periods of time as this may put pressure on your vaginal area. Every hour you should lie down for 20 to 40 minutes. Do this for two to four days after your child is born.
Take a sitz bath up to three times a day.
In a sitz bath, you only sit in the water with your lower body. This can both help heal the cracks and relieve pain. Sit in warm water for up to 10 minutes. Then dry off with a clean towel.
Use a soothing oil.
You could use a natural healing oil on the outer skin of your vagina. Try a small amount of aloe vera gel, vitamin E oil, or a non-antibacterial beneficial oil. Don’t use antibacterial creams on your vagina because they can upset good bacteria’s natural balance.
Take an oatmeal bath.
Vaginal tears may become itchy as they heal. They can also cause the area to become tender or dry. If this happens to you, you can take an oatmeal bath. Fill a bathtub with warm water and oatmeal. Relax in the water while the oatmeal soothes the itching and inflammation.
Treat minor cracks
Watch out for pain.
Vaginal tears trigger a slight pain in your crotch. You may feel pain when you sit, walk, or wear tight clothing. Minor tears could also lead to minor bleeding. They could also be itchy or uncomfortable.
Determine how deep the crack is.
Treatment depends on how serious the tear is. If you’re unsure how bad it is, get a mirror and look at the crack. If the tear is somewhere you can’t see it, you should see a doctor.
Leave simple cracks alone.
Simple cracks will heal on their own without treatment. Simple tears are small and look like you’ve cut or scratched yourself on paper. Simple tears may bleed at first and may be painful, uncomfortable, or itchy. Simple tears have a clear trigger that you know about, like sexual activity or inserting a tampon.
Wash your vagina twice a day.
If you have a tear or cut in the vagina, wash the area twice a day with a mild intimate wash solution. Wash gently and not roughly. Use a hypoallergenic soap that doesn’t contain any irritating substances. Try not to wash off the inner protective layer of your vagina as it helps protect and heal your vagina. Don’t wash the inside of your vagina. Only wash the outer areas. Do not douche if you have a vaginal tear. This can upset your natural pH levels, which keep your vagina healthy.
Wear clean, comfortable underwear.
Breathable cotton underwear is the best choice for vaginal tears. Slightly loose but comfortable underpants will help avoid discomfort during the healing process.
If you have a vaginal tear, you should refrain from sexual activity alone or with your partner. Any type of sexual activity, whether alone or with your partner, can cause the tear to reopen. Contact with other body parts can also allow bacteria to enter the crack. After your tear has healed, be very careful the first few times you have sex again to avoid tearing the sensitive skin.
Avoid putting tampons or other objects in or on your vagina.
While the tear is healing, avoid irritating your vagina with objects being inserted or applied to it. Don’t use tampons, menstrual cups, condoms, diaphragms, or other vaginal objects. You should also avoid using irritating lubricants or lotions. Wear loose, cotton underwear that doesn’t pinch or constrict your vagina.
See a doctor if the tear gets worse.
If the pain gets worse, you should have a doctor take a look. If you also notice bleeding, a foul odor, discharge, develop a fever, or become dizzy, seek medical help immediately.
Have cracks treated medically
Go to the doctor.
If you have a vaginal tear that is causing you severe pain, is larger than a small cut or scrape, or is not healing, see your doctor. This will determine the best course of treatment. Your doctor will also determine if you have a medical condition that caused your vaginal tear.
Take the medication prescribed.
If you have a vaginal tear, your doctor may prescribe medications to relieve the infection or speed healing. These could be ointments, tablets or gels.
Increase your estrogen levels.
Low estrogen levels can lead to atrophic vaginitis, easily tearing a dry vagina. Other diseases, such as cancer or hormonal imbalances, can also lead to low estrogen levels. Your doctor may prescribe estrogen ointments or suggest changes to your diet to increase the estrogen you get from your diet. Never try to increase your estrogen levels without first talking to a doctor. This can upset your body’s chemical balance.
Change your diet.
Some women develop vaginal tears because they lack certain nutrients. These deficiencies lead to a breakdown of the skin and membranes in the vagina. Talk to your doctor about your diet if you have frequent vaginal tears that don’t heal. A nutritionist can help you determine which nutrients you are lacking and how to add them safely. Zinc deficiency is a common reason for vaginal tears. Other deficiencies include vitamin A, omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, and vitamin C.
See a doctor immediately if you have deeper cracks.
Some cracks are deep or particularly problematic. You may bleed profusely, fester, smell foul, or have skin or muscle layers peeling off. They could also cause you serious pain. These wounds often occur during childbirth, trauma, or accidents during sex. These are serious wounds that need to be treated appropriately.
Get the wound sewn up.
Many deep vaginal tears are sewn up. Tears longer than three centimeters are usually sewn up. Your doctor will stitch the skin together. This can be done in a clinic or hospital. In general, these wounds heal well. Keep them clean and dry and wear loose clothing while they heal. Do not engage in activities that will cause the stitches to tear or the wound to reopen.