Newly updated May 11, 2016.
Think of it: A healthy woman. If she is still having her menstruation, she should feel vibrant, have a naturally high libido (sexual desire) and be hormonally balanced. If she is in menopause, this is the time in her life where she wants to be sexually spontaneous with her partner. She no longer has fear of an unwanted pregnancy. And then suddenly, intercourse itself becomes painful because of vaginal dryness, irritation, and itching due to low estrogen levels.
The female problem mentioned here is known as Vulvar and Vaginal Atrophy (atrophic vaginitis). According to NCBI (National Center For Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library Of Medicine): There are an estimated 64 million postmenopausal women in the United States (US), and as many as 32 million women may suffer from VVA symptoms including dyspareunia (pain during sexual intercourse), vaginal dryness, and vaginal irritation.
This challenging female discomfort is characterized by a thinning and inflammation of the vaginal walls due to a decline in estrogen. Vaginal atrophy occurs most often after menopause, but it can also develop during breast-feeding or at any other time a woman’s body’s estrogen production declines. Many women suffer in silence. An estimated 55% of women do not discuss their symptoms and feel embarrassed to talk about this very common problem, even, at times, with their very own doctor.
This condition of vaginal dryness/vaginal atrophy if left untreated can lead to:
- incontinence (poor bladder control and a constant urge to urinate)
- vaginal burning
- recurrent UTIs (urinary tract infections)
- inflammation of the vaginal walls and a shrinking of the muscles of the vaginal walls due to low estrogen levels (very low or almost no estradiol) that in turn cause low estriol levels (important for the vaginal lining to be able to lubricate naturally)
- glandular imbalances
- low DHEA levels
- bleeding, usually light, after intercourse
- Pain and irritation are associated with this syndrome as well
- tightening and/or shortening of the vaginal canal
Low sexual activity worsens the symptoms, and of course, the discomfort of intercourse makes women want to avoid intimacy altogether – and the problem continues to worsen. Low estrogen levels are one of the main causes of this unfortunate female problem.
How does a woman know if her estrogen levels are low? Symptoms include:
- brain fog
- high cholesterol levels (high ‘bad’ cholesterol levels)
- vaginal pain
- low sexual desire
- poor or no vaginal lubrication
- emotional oversensitivity (weepiness)
- sugar imbalances
- hot flashes
- night sweats
Lubrication is another concern. In menopause, the three muscosities that become the driest are the mouth, skin, and vagina. Dry mouth and constant thirst, the feeling of needing to moisturize the skin of the body daily or more, and the search for the right lubricant to enjoy sexual intercourse, are some of the issues a woman who is NOT balanced hormonally will suffer. Unfortunately, chemical lubricants combined with vaginal atrophy may cause bleeding. Lack of, or no sexual activity doesn’t help. Women must remember, ‘if you don’t use it, you lose it’.
Vaginal muscles must be used and exercised for vaginal and reproductive system health. Along with stimulating the vaginal walls, women should regularly do Kegel exercises, and if a woman has no sexual partner, she should consider manual stimuli or utilizing a sexual toy to maintain vaginal health. Yes, I said it. And I am direct and blunt when it comes to health. This is self-preservation, self-love, self-healing, Ladies, and should be looked at, and thought of, as ‘taking care of yourself to prevent health challenges’.
Also, a decline in sexual activity can bring upon a slew of emotional problems when women find it hard to explain to their partner what they are going through. The fear of being judged ‘not fit’ any longer to have sex with is
something my own patients/clients have admitted to me in confidence. So, we now know physically what to do. Hormonally, though, what is a woman to do? Are there natural ways to correct vaginal dryness, vaginal atrophy and the prior symptoms? Yes.
Patients and clients have experienced excellent results with the following combination of natural therapies that work to heal, strengthen the glandular system, balance hormones, improve skin tone, lubricate internally and externally, and increase sex drive:
NATURAL CHANGES – (add especially if in menopause)
PRO-G-YAM CREAM (500mg.)– apply a dime size amount into the vagina daily.
Enjoy life again, Ladies, with sexual vitality and a toned system! ~Dr. Julissa