Vaginal dryness is a very unwelcome change in a woman’s physiology. It leads to a very uncomfortable sensation, leading to a rude pause in your sexual life and making exercising and other hygienic habits a daily struggle.
A woman suffering from vaginal dryness finds it hard to wear her favorite clothes or lead a normal life.Vaginal dryness makes life miserable for women, especially menopausal and perimenopausal women. Vaginal dryness occurs when the thin moisturizing layer of a clear fluid maintained by estrogen hormone in the body begins to dry up due to lesser production of estrogen.
Menopause is the main reason behind vaginal dryness but there can be some other reasons too responsible for a general feeling of dryness and discomfort in vagina.
Causes of Vaginal Dryness
At the time of menopause production of estrogen hormone reduces to a great extent. This also causes thinning and lesser elasticity in vagina. This condition is called Vaginal Atrophy. Low production of estrogen affects vaginal moisture levels badly and causes vaginal dryness.
Childbirth and Breastfeeding
During the time of delivery and breast feeding a woman’s hormones fluctuate considerably leading to dryness in vaginal walls.
Removal of Ovaries
If due to some pathological reasons ovaries have been removed from a woman’s body then estrogen production stops, leading to dry vagina.
Chemotherapy treatment can also interfere with hormones in the body and can cause vaginal dryness.
Symptoms of Vaginal Dryness
Vaginal dryness leads to a feeling of constant itching and stinging sensation around the vaginal opening and lower part of the vagina. Constant itching makes it tough for a woman to do her daily activities with confidence.
In the absence of adequate lubrication, burning also becomes quite common. A constant feeling of burning makes it difficult to stay calm.
Bleeding During Intercourse
Due to inadequate lubrication, penetration causes friction in vagina and makes it tough to enjoy the sexual activity. Women begin to develop certain kind of contempt towards sex and physical indulgence. It is important that the partner should understand the physical discomfort the woman is going through and should be supportive and understanding.
Dryness in vagina leads to recurrent urinary tract infection also because the lubrication in vagina also works as a shield against bacteria but in the absence of lubrication, invasion of bacteria causing UTI becomes easier and women suffer from constant bout of Urinary Tract Infection.
Treatment for Vaginal Dryness
The most common treatment for vaginal dryness in topical estrogen therapy where in some amount of estrogen is released in the vagina directly without affecting the levels of estrogen hormone in the blood stream.
Doctor inserts a soft and small ring in your vagina which keeps releasing small amounts of estrogen hormone in the vagina. You need to replace the ring quarterly.
These tablets need to be inserted in vagina daily. A disposable applicator is used to insert the tablet in vagina. For the first couple of weeks it is inserted once a day and then in the later week it needs to be inserted two times a day until the doctor asks you to stop it.
For applying cream deep into the vaginal walls, you need a cream applicator. Some creams need to be applied on daily basis and some others need to be applied on alternative weeks depending on the brand of the cream.
Vaginal dryness is a discomforting feature of menopause but you need not live with this discomfort for your life tile. Meet your doctor and get it treated for enjoying life to the fullest.