Vaginal dryness—or atrophy, as known in the medical world—affects women of all ages and backgrounds all over the world. From uncomfortable soreness to pain during sex, dehydrated vaginas are more common than you think.
What causes vaginal dryness?
Often mistaken for either vaginal or sexually transmitted infections, vaginal dryness is most commonly experienced in women going through menopause.
The vagina naturally produces a lubricant to keep itself moist and supple. This natural lube also helps to cleanse the vagina by removing dead cells and harmful bacteria. But some women who produce too much estrogen either because of hormonal changes, PH imbalances caused by an infection, stress, anxiety or the intake of certain medication, offsets the production of the vagina's natural lubricant. Cheyenne Swaby, a Urogynecology Surgical Nurse and WooWoo’s Intimate Health Expert explains that:
Women experience vaginal dryness when the vagina is less lubricated and this could be a result of many different factors such as hormonal changes, PH imbalance cause by infection, medications, stress and anxiety.
Vaginal dryness can be a very embarrassing for women to talk about, however it needs to be addressed to avoid further vaginal health problems.
The reason why she stresses to talk about this health issue is because there are ways to go around it that could very easily eliminate the problem instead of letting it linger longer than necessary. If you experience any of the following symptoms then perhaps they are a sign of vaginal dryness:
- Burning sensation when urinating
- Redness or soreness within the vulva area
- Pain during sexual intercourse
Natural and over-the-counter remedies
If you are suffering from vaginal dryness there are two routes you can take; either going to your pharmacy to pick up over-the-counter medication such as vaginal estrogen (in the form of a pill or rings), vaginal moisturizers or lubricants, or opting for more natural treatments.
If you do decide to naturally take care of your problem, it is encouraged to extend foreplay so as to promote more vaginal lubrication, avoid douching and using scented soaps and lastly incorporating more phytoestrogens type foods with your diet such as soya, seeds, nuts and tofu.