How to fix vaginal dryness

How to fix vaginal dryness

Vaginal dryness is a common problem that women experience. 17% of women aged 18-50 have experienced vaginal dryness (and reported problems during sex). That increases to 50% of women who have gone through menopause [1]. Symptoms of vaginal dryness are itching (in and around the vagina), pain during sex, an increase in the need to urinate and an increase in urinary tract infections (UTIs) [2]. 


Vaginal Dryness in 20s and 30s

For women experiencing vaginal dryness in their 20s and 30s (and not pregnant), it may be due to a lack of arousal during sex which can be supported by clitoral stimulation with fingers/tongue or using a lubricant. Furthermore, many women have reported vaginal dryness as a symptom of the contraceptive pill or antidepressants. Speak to your healthcare provider about switching to a different product if you’re struggling with vaginal dryness. Perfumed products that are used around your vagina have been known to cause vaginal dryness. Refrain from using perfumed soaps, bath bombs and fragranced condoms and lubricant if you’re experiencing vaginal dryness. If you’re looking for lubricants, search for 'lubricants for women' as these usually don’t have any spermicide or fragrances that can cause irritation and infection. 


Vaginal Dryness in Perimenopause, Menopause and Post-Menopause

As mentioned above, vaginal dryness is extremely common in perimenopause, menopause and post-menopause. During these stages, there is a natural decrease in oestrogen. Oestrogen supports lubricated tissues in the vagina and vulva so a decrease can lead to vaginal dryness. Some women only experience problems during sex while others struggle with it daily. Using a lubricant during sex can be an effective way to prevent pain and discomfort; for daily symptoms, a vaginal moisturiser can be bought over the counter. For medical solutions, speak to your healthcare provider about Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) and vaginal oestrogens (topical oestrogens) [3]. 


Vaginal Dryness in Pregnancy and Postpartum 

A change in oestrogen levels can also be a problem in early pregnancy due to changing hormones. Therefore, many women experience vaginal dryness in early pregnancy. However, dehydration can also be a cause. Your circulating fluid volume increases by 50% during pregnancy so keep hydrated to avoid vaginal dryness [4]. The symptom of vaginal dryness may continue after birth as a 2018 study found that 43% of postpartum women experienced vaginal dryness. The advice for women during pregnancy and postpartum is to use a lubricant and a vaginal moisturiser and remember to keep the body hydrated. Speak to your healthcare provider about vaginal oestrogens (topical oestrogens) [5]. 


Vaginal dryness is completely normal and can usually be solved with lubricant or a vaginal moisturiser. We advise keeping a lubricant ready just in case. If you’re experiencing vaginal dryness, it’s best to use a lubricant (and possibly a vaginal moisturiser) or to speak to your healthcare provider if symptoms continue because vaginal dryness can increase your risk of UTIs and thrush. 







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