Vaginal dryness can cause embarrassing itching, discomfort when sitting for prolonged periods, and pain during intercourse. While women of any age may experience vaginal dryness, it becomes extremely common after menopause. In fact, it is estimated that as many as half of all postmenopausal women suffer from vaginal dryness.
Yet, as many as 90% of women with the symptoms of a dry vagina do not seek medical treatment because they are embarrassed, or because they erroneously believe that this is “normal” and just something they must “learn to live with”.
In this article the hormone replacement and feminine health experts at SottoPelle, in the greater Phoenix area, explain what causes vaginal dryness – and discuss the most effective treatment for restoring vaginal health, lubrication and comfort.
What Causes Vaginal Dryness?
Decreasing levels of the female hormone estrogen are the chief cause of vaginal dryness. And, since women begin to produce less estrogen as they leave their childbearing years, vaginal dryness is most common among women during and after perimenopause and menopause.
Specifically, estrogen helps maintain thick, healthy tissue in the vaginal walls. The vaginal walls contain cells that produce moisture to lubricate the vagina. The primary purpose of this moisture is to create an alkaline environment that helps sperm survive during sexual reproduction. But, as the hormone levels decline, the vaginal walls thin. And thinner walls mean there are fewer cells to secrete lubrication – leading to chronic vaginal dryness, itching and discomfort.
Vaginal Dryness is Not “Normal”
While vaginal dryness is quite common, it is not a healthy or “normal” state for the vagina. If it were normal it would not just affect 50% of menopausal women.
The medical term used for the cluster of symptoms caused by drop a woman’s drop in estrogen production is “genitourinary syndrome of menopause” (GSM), according to The North American Menopause Society and the International Society for the Study of Women’s Sexual Health.
In other words, contrary to popular belief, vaginal dryness is not just a part of aging. It is a medical condition that can be improved with the right treatment.
Vaginal Dryness will NOT Go Away On its Own
While many other menopausal symptoms, such as hot flashes, problems sleeping, or mental fog, will typically get better over time, vaginal dryness will not improve on its own. This is because the physical changes in the vagina which cause the loss of lubrication (atrophy of tissues and thinning of the walls) are permanent, unless they are medically treated.
Treatments for Vaginal Dryness
The good news is that vaginal dryness can be successfully treated. But, as with any medical condition, it is important to treat the underlying cause of vaginal dryness – not just the symptoms.
Lubricants for Treating Vaginal Dryness
Many women resort to over-the-counter vaginal lubricants. The disadvantages to this approach are many.
For starters, lubricants are messy. Since they have to be applied immediately before intercourse, they are inconvenient and can kill spontaneity during intimacy. Additionally, most lubricants are “sticky” and have an odd taste or off-putting smell.
And, the biggest issue with lubricants is that they do not treat the underlying cause of vaginal dryness (thinning tissue due to hormone decline). So, while lubricants may provide temporary relief, your condition will only continue to worsen over time.
Hormone Therapy for Treating Vaginal Dryness
Restoring a woman’s estrogen levels healthy to pre-menopause amounts treats the underlying cause of vaginal dryness. Rebalancing missing estrogen enables the woman’s body to naturally strengthen and rebuild the walls and tissue in the vagina, which in turn increases lubrication secretion and naturally reduces dryness.
However, all forms of hormone replacement are not equally safe, effective or convenient. Only bioidentical hormone pellets offer a long-term solution to estrogen replacement that is 100% natural, and does not require daily or weekly application.
Traditionally, pills, creams, patches, rings and injections were used to deliver missing hormones to the body. But, obviously, shots are quite painful – and remembering to refill prescriptions and take a daily pill is inconvenient. Additionally, injections and pills create a roller coaster effect of hormone surges followed by daily declines. Hormone creams are messy to apply. And hormone patches are unsightly and can fall off in the shower or when swimming or exercising.
Only SottoPelle bioidentical hormone pellets deliver estrogen that treats the underlying cause of vaginal dryness with a single treatment that offers 24/7 time released estrogen delivery for up to four months.
Estrogen Therapy Vaginal Dryness Treatment – Phoenix, AZ
If you are suffering from the pain and discomfort of vaginal dryness, you do NOT have to suffer in silence. There IS a treatment that can restore vaginal lubrication and alleviate your symptoms.
For effectiveness, safety, convenience, and consistency bioidentical hormone pellets are the safest and most effective delivery method of estrogen.
If you live in the greater Phoenix, AZ area, contact the doctors at SottoPelle today for a complete hormone workup and diagnosis – and see how estrogen replacement pellets can help treat the underlying cause of your vaginal dryness and discomfort and give you back your quality of life!
And if you are outside of the Phoenix area, you can use our convenient SottoPelle Physician Finder to locate a provider in your area.