Are you feeling dry downstairs? Vaginal dryness typically occurs due to the onset of vaginal atrophy or atrophic vaginitis. However, it can also happen due to shifts in hormones throughout a woman's adult life. Over 80% of all women will experience vaginal dryness at some point.
Losing your lubrication can have a dramatic effect on both your physical and psychological help. Without a healthy sexual relationship, your partner might start to drift away from you, causing even more emotional stress.
Is there a cure for vaginal dryness?
What Is the Cause of Vaginal Dryness?
Before looking at a potential female dryness treatment for vaginal dryness, it's essential to understand the concept of the condition and its manifestations. During sex, the vagina receives lubrication from the Bartholin's glands found at the front of the vagina. The glands secrete fluids to provide lubrication for sex on arousal.
The Bartholin's glands rely on balanced estrogen levels in the body for optimal function. When the production of estrogen in the ovaries starts to decline, it leaves the vagina feeling dry, itchy, and irritated.
There are numerous reasons why estrogen levels are falling, but the most common reasons are changes in hormone profiles that occur during pregnancy and menopause. Less estrogen in the body results in thinning of tissues around the vagina and a drop in lubrication.
Some of the other life events that can cause a drop in estrogen production include the following.
- Contraceptive use and hormone replacement therapy
- Illnesses such as cervical cancer
- Medications such as antihistamines and anti-depressants
- Consumption of alcohol and tobacco products
- Intolerance to detergents or cleaning products
- Emotional trauma
There are many causes of vaginal dryness, and trying to nail it down to one specific reason is challenging for physicians. Therefore, they'll require you to come in for a diagnosis that will likely involve bloodwork to analyze your hormone markers.
It may take the lab a few days to return your results to your doctor. They'll create a treatment plan and notify you of your treatment protocol in your follow-up appointment.
What Symptoms Occur with Vaginal Dryness?
Vaginal dryness can occur suddenly or slowly develop over several days or weeks. Your symptoms may show up unexpectedly, or progress slowly. Each case is different, and you must speak to your doctor for advice on how to handle the situation for yourself.
It's possible to treat vaginal dryness at home under the direction of your physician. Some women may find they experience success with home remedies to help improve lubrication. Others may need assistance from medications. However, there is no surgical procedure to cure the problem.
When vaginal dryness starts to show up, you can identify it through the following symptoms.
- Dryness of the vagina that results in pain and chafing during sex
- Stinging, swelling, and bleeding of the vagina after intercourse
- Discomfort from underwear chaffing
- Some women may experience discharge or infection
The lubrication required for your vagina protects your vaginal canal from urinary tract infections. Without the protection of this lubricant, the vagina is more at risk of catching a disease. You might come down with an STI or a bacterial imbalance, such as Bacterial Vaginosis (BV).
Itchy skin leads to scratching, and severe irritation means that the sensitive skin around the vulva becomes weak and prone to damage. As a result, breaks in the skin and acute inflammation make infection risk higher.
Are There Natural Treatments for Vaginal Dryness?
Doctors treat vaginal dryness on a case-by-case basis. Depending on your condition, your doctor may advise hormone replacement therapy, or something as simple as a change in your diet.
Natural treatments can also include the use of lubricants to help with lubrication during sex. You can try a natural lubricant like extra-virgin coconut oil, or a water-based lubricant available from retailers online.
Doctors prescribe hormone replacement therapy. Depending on your condition, you might only need a supplemental bump to your natural production, or you might have to use medication. Contraceptive medication is a form of HRT, and it can result in imbalances in some women's estrogen levels.
If you start a new contraceptive and experience the onset of vaginal dryness, it's likely the medication that's causing the problem. Bring this to the attention of your physician immediately.