The internal plumbing of women is really complicated and very technical! This results in a lot health concerns. But the most unfortunate part is the fact that majority of women don’t feel comfortable talking about these issues. One such hush-hush issue that we women often feel shy to open up about is Vaginal Dryness.
So, let’s talk about it!
What is Vaginal Dryness? When and why does it happen? What are the efficient home remedies to fight it?
Vaginal Dryness occurs when the thin clear lining of vaginal fluid which is needed to keep the vagina lubricated and healthy, is lost.
The layer of vaginal fluid is maintained by the hormone called oestrogen (also spelled as estrogen). When there is a drop in the level of oestrogen, it leads to vaginal dryness.
So, The Big Question Is – What Causes The Drop In Level Of Oestrogen?
1. Menopause: After a certain age, as menopause approaches, women face a significant drop in the oestrogen levels.
2. Surgical menopause: If the ovaries, which produce oestrogen, are removed for some reason, then it can again lead to oestrogen drop.
3. Childbirth and breastfeeding: New moms often face the problem of vaginal dryness.
4. Cancer treatment: Treatments like radiation, chemotherapy, etc., as well as anti-oestrogen drugs used to treat breast cancer, endometriosis, or uterine fibroids, can lead to oestrogen drop.
5. Certain medicines: Medicines like antihistamines and antidepressants are also known to harm oestrogen levels.
6. Lifestyle: Excessive stress, overworking, smoking and drinking and other such lifestyle disorders can also lead to oestrogen drop, and hence, vaginal dryness.
You have to understand that vaginal dryness is one of the symptoms of an overall change in vaginal health. So, besides the drying of the internal walls, there will be other problems that tag along with vaginal dryness like:
• Recurring Urinary Tract Infections
• Painful coitus
These problems cause significant disruption in the overall well-being, happiness and sex life of a woman.
It is a good idea to consult your physician when you’re facing vaginal dryness. If necessary, the doctor will perform a pelvic exam and check your vagina for redness or thinning of vaginal fluid to diagnose the possible causes. The diagnosis process may also include removal of cells from the cervix or vaginal wall for the Pap test.
Topical treatments: Based on your condition as diagnosed by the doctor, you will be given topical medicines such as a vaginal cream, vaginal tablet, vaginal ring, etc. These are contemporary treatments for vaginal dryness, as opposed to the formerly popular hormone replacement therapies.
OTT lubricants: There are over-the-counter lubricants and moisturisers that can help you when you’re facing dryness in the vagina. These are especially effective in making coitus/sex pain-free.
Home Remedies: It is a good idea to include soy, nuts, seeds, and tofu in your diet, as these items contain phytoestrogens, which are compounds that act like oestrogen in the body. Research says that they can moderately improve vaginal moisture.
Regular Sexual Activity: When a woman is aroused, the blood flow in the vaginal tissues can raise the moisture production. Sufficient foreplay before intercourse will help combat the dryness.
While vaginal dryness only shows minor symptoms, it can majorly hamper the daily routine and sex life of a woman. It is important to speak to your physician and your partner when you’re facing vaginal dryness and other symptoms that come with it, so that you can opt for the right treatment and solution.