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Vaginal Dryness

This can be a common symptom of menopause and whilst not all women experience it, it does become more common after menopause.

Put simply, there is a lack of vaginal moisture. This may not seem like it is too important, but naturally, when it comes to one’s sex life, it does have a huge impact.

It’s not just older women who suffer from this condition – vaginal dryness can occur at an age from other causes.


During menopause, estrogen levels drop. This hormone helps to maintain both the lubricating vaginal fluid as well as a healthy, thick and elastic vaginal lining. When estrogen levels drop, less moisture is available and the vaginal walls become thinner and less elastic. This condition is referred to as vaginal atrophy.

Estrogen levels can drop from other causes also …

  • child birth and breast feeding
  • radiation and chemotherapy treatment for cancer
  • anti-estrogen medications used to treat endometriosis and uterine fibroids
  • if ovaries have been removed as in a hysterectomy

And vaginal dryness can occur for sufferers of Sjogren’s Syndrome (an autoimmune disorder that damages glands that produce the vaginal lubrication as well as tears and saliva)

Some medications contribute, including allergy, cold and some antidepressant medications.

Douching can also contribute – douching is a method of washing out the vagina and may involve a water/vinegar mix or a chemist product containing antiseptics and fragrances. These products interfere with the natural vaginal lubrication but are used to promote intimate freshness. There is evidence that douching is not effective for pregnancy avoidance or SDT’s (other reasons for douching) and can possibly increase risk of infection.

How is vaginal dryness diagnosed?

The person themselves will have a good indication of what is happening and a medical practitioner can do a pelvic examination.

What can be done?

Estrogen applied topically can raise lowered levels and ease vaginal dryness. Taken orally as in hormone therapy, higher estrogen levels in the bloodstream can be achieved. There are vaginal estrogen creams available via your health care professional.

Some people prefer products like wild yam cream (applied to soft tissue anywhere on the body so as to be absorbed) or sea buckthorn oils (taken internally to assist support mucous producing processes). Lubricants like K-Y are easily available at any chemist and vaginal moisturisers are obtainable also.

An important point is that discussions on the subject with your partner may help them understand what you’re going through. It’s a natural part of aging. An open sharing may remove misunderstandings … painful intercourse will have an effect on one’s confidence and ability to enjoy intimate experiences and without open communication with one’s partner, one can add to the problem.

Good Luck ….

We are not healthcare or medical professionals and the information contained here is not to be taken as medical advice. It is recommended that you consult you healthcare professional prior to taking any supplements and always read the label, use only as directed, and if symptoms persist, see your healthcare professional.