Why is my vagina itchy after sex, and is it normal that I’m having a panic attack right now?

Nothing is a bigger buzzkill than an itchy vagina after sex. Not only does it take away your stunning sexual afterglow, it’s crazy uncomfortable because you can’t get to the itch and scratch the hell out of it, no matter how badly you want to. But before you start freaking out or worrying that you have some sexually transmitted infection, there are a few other, more benign reasons that your vag might be itchy after sex and they’re super easy to take care of, or avoid the next time.

The first thing you should ask yourself is if you’re allergic to latex condoms. You can actually ask your doctor to test you for the allergy to see how severe it is. If you have a severe latex allergy, you would know. It won’t just be itchy down there, there might be a rash, too. In the worst cases, a latex allergy can mess with your breathing and you can go into shock, so if you generally feel like hell after sex, make an appointment and get tested for allergies. Because you shouldn’t be that uncomfortable every time you have sex.

Just because you’re allergic to latex doesn’t mean you can’t stay safe. Instead of latex, look for polyurethane condoms (it will be written on the front or back of the box). They prevent pregnancy and protect you against STIs just like latex ones do. And actually, polyurethane condoms are usually a little thinner and transmit more heat, so if that sounds like something you could get into, they’re definitely worth trying out, itchy vagina or not.

If your vagina is itchy and you’re not using condoms (seriously though, if you’re not very fucking monogamous — like, you own each other’s sex parts — you should really be using a goddamn condom, but I digress), you could be allergic to your partner’s semen. There’s not a whole lot you can do about it, apart from using a condom or asking him to not ejaculate inside of you. There’s always a chance of pre-cum, and you would be allergic to that, too, so an itchy vag might just be something you have to put up with if you love the guy.

Another really common reason for vaginal itching after sex is just plain and simple friction. If you’ve been going at it all night and all morning, your body is going to have some repercussions. The only thing that can help it is having slower sex, but if that’s not what you’re into, that doesn’t really help you much.

If your vagina just itches after having sex for a day or so, then you really shouldn’t be worried about it and just let it run its course (even though it’s uncomfortable as hell). If it persists, or burns, you might want to make an appointment with a gyno as soon as you can to have it checked out. Otherwise, don’t freak out — everyone’s vag itches a little after some good sex.