Feminaform The Feminaform is a device that can be used on the advice or under the supervision of your doctor or therapist to treat vaginal conditions. Conditions that can be helped by using the Feminaform The vaginal dilator set can provide a great deal of relief from the symptoms of many medical conditions that affect the vagina. The dilator set is recommended for women that suffer from vaginal constriction caused by excessive muscle tone, a spasm or scar tissue. It is also possible to use the dilator set if the vagina is not properly formed. Conditions that can be resolved by using the Feminaform are: Vaginismus Dyspareunia Vaginal stenosis after radiotherapy or surgery Vaginal agenesis Vaginoplasty Lichen sclerosis Vulvodynia Vaginismus A vaginistic reaction is when, during an attempt at sexual intercourse, the muscles around the vagina contract without the woman wishing this to occur. This makes intercourse either impossible or only with a great deal of difficulty and pain (dyspareunia). The contraction of the pelvic floor muscles sometimes occurs even before anything, such as a penis, tampon or speculum, gets close to the vagina. Women with a vaginistic reaction often think they are ‘too tight’. However this is almost never the case. The feeling of tightness is caused by increased tension, a type of spasm of the pelvic floor muscles. This muscle tension is often a reflex action. Therapy: When used correctly, the Feminaform is a very effective device for the treatment of vaginismus. The vaginal dilator set can help break through this muscle tension reflex. This muscle tension is the underlying cause of the tightness, the burning sensation and penetration problems. The FeminaForm gives women precise control over the size, speed and angle of the object being inserted into their vagina. Specific exercises with the Feminaform enable women to practice the deliberate contraction and relaxation of their muscles to desensitise the muscles around the vagina. The exercises related to vaginismus are more to help the women regain control of their pelvic floor muscles than to actually widen their vagina. What is included in the Feminaform? Vaginal dilator set A vaginal dilator set consists of a case containing four dilators of varying diameters, a universal handle, a lubricant starter pack and a manual. How do you use the Feminaform? The Feminaform is very easy to use. You can use it in the privacy of your own home and it takes just a few minutes each day. When you use the dilator try and find a technique that feels comfortable. Your treatment provider has probably given you a Feminaform exercise programme related to your condition. You should adhere to this programme. Preparations The minimum you need to exercise with the vaginal dilator set are the dilators, the handle, the lubricant and a towel. Wash your hands before you start. Lay the towel on a bed or settee, then lie down and make yourself comfortable. A small cushion under your hips may be helpful. It is important that you relax, in particular the muscles in your groin and lower abdomen. It can be helpful to use relaxation techniques in advance such as taking a warm bath or playing relaxing music. Therapy position A practical therapy position is to lie down with cushions in your back. Bend your knees to approximately 45 degrees and spread your legs so that your feet are separated by the width of your hips. Do not place your knees any further apart than is necessary to enable you to place your hand between them. A frequently made error when using a dilator is to spread your knees as wide as possible. However this makes it more difficult to insert the dilator because it will increase muscle tension. If you cannot reach your vagina properly, do not pull yourself up by tensing your abdominal muscles but instead support your neck and back with more cushions. An alternative position is to stand with one foot on a moderately elevated platform, as you would when inserting a tampon. Then try to relax. Apply lubrication to the dilator that you will be starting with. If too much lubricant is scrapped off when inserting the dilator into the vagina opening, you can also apply lubricant directly into the vagina. Insert the dilator. Exercising You will apply more or less pressure, depending on the condition for which you are using the Feminaform. In the case of vaginismus conditions, you can perform contraction and relaxation exercises after the dilator has been inserted. Rotate the dilator during the exercises to maintain or form a good vaginal cavity. You should adhere to the exercise programme prescribed to you by your pelvic therapist, gynaecologist or sexologist. After completing the exercises, clean the vaginal dilator set with warm water and a mild soap and then dry the set properly.
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