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Vaginal Dryness

According to the North American Menopause Society, “During their life, at least one-third of all women will experience some troubling symptoms in the vulvovaginal area (external female genitals and vagina). These symptoms range in severity from mildly annoying to debilitating!  Symptoms include vaginal discharge, irritation, burning, dryness, itchiness, and pain (both with and outside of sexual activity)”.  Recurrent urinary tract infections and cystitis are common complications of dryness or atrophy (due to lack of estrogen hormone).

The good news is you can fix this!  But before assuming your symptoms are only attributed to deficiencies and imbalances of menopause, other conditions should be ruled out.  It’s always a good idea to schedule a visit with a qualified gynecologist for an accurate diagnosis. A pelvic exam allows your doctor to evaluate the vulva and vagina; certain screening tests (a Pap test, pH evaluation, or biopsy) may be ordered as well.

Once you’ve ruled out infection, sexually transmitted disease, allergies, medication side effects, trauma and cancer, you might consider probiotics, lubricants, stress reduction, dilation program or even vaginal rejuvenation (see www.santoriellogynecology.com).  For the majority of women, however, a menopause-related decline in estrogen is usually the cause of vaginal dryness (technically called vaginal atrophy or atrophic vaginitis). This condition is experienced by roughly 70 to 80 percent of all post-menopausal women.  A drop in estrogen leads to dryness and thinning of cells in the vagina and genital area.  This leaves the vagina, vulva and rectum more susceptible to infection and trauma from minor activity as attempted intercourse or even wiping.

What you can do?

You may want to try over the counter lubricants but to get to the core of the problem you will need to boost your estrogen levels.  Make an appointment to discuss our hormone balancing program or other hormone replacement options (e.g. vaginal estrogen cream – 4 Comfort Estriol Cream).  To help naturally boost your estrogen levels and help alleviate menopausal symptoms you may wish to try MenoFem.  We have also seen great results from our I-Sight product which helps lubricate and improve eye health and provides an extra bonus by lubricating other areas!

 

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