Vaginal dryness is a medical condition characterised by the lack of moisture in the vaginal area of a woman. This may result in dryness, itching, irritation and burning sensation. Vaginal dryness makes sexual intercourse painful and may also result in bleeding. Mostly it affects the post-menopausal woman, but it may affect women of any age group.
Usually, the estrogen hormone, a group of steroid hormones produced by the ovaries, which promotes the development and maintains female characteristics of the body, keeps the walls of the vagina lubricated by maintaining a thin layer of clear fluid.
What Causes Vaginal Dryness
Causes of vaginal dryness include menopause (cessation of menstruation in women between age 45 to 55), after childbirth breastfeeding, radiation, chemotherapy and surgical removal of ovaries. Other causes are anti-estrogen medications given in the treatment of endometriosis and uterine fibroids. All these factors lead to decrease in the level of estrogen hormone due to which reduces the amount of the moisture available making the vagina less elastic and thinner.
Symptoms of Vaginal Dryness
Vaginal dryness causes itch, swelling, irritation and pains. Also, it leads to stress, anxiety, problems in relationships and absence of foreplay may also contribute to the dryness of the vagina.
Treatment of Vaginal Dryness
The doctor may recommend estrogen-based, therapies which may include vaginal inserts in the form of a ring, pellet or creams, a skin patch that releases estrogen or oral medications. To prevent painful intercourse, lubricants that are water-soluble starch base jellies can be applied around the vulva and vagina.
Petroleum-based products and vaginal moisturisers are also available to be used either daily or 2 to 3 times a week. A healthy diet including all food groups, proteins, carbohydrates, fruits, milk, and salads. Make a habit to drink at least 3 litres of water every day. Avoid using perfumed soaps. There is lactic acid vaginal wash available on the market that can be used to wash the vagina along with warm water. Give time to foreplay before sexual intercourse so that maximum amount of lubrication can be produced.
Natural Remedies to Treat Vaginal Dryness
Comfrey enhances lubrication and is known to soothe vaginal dryness, itching and infection. Comfrey is available in ointments and gels and can be used to treat vaginal dryness. Boil a tablespoon comfrey leaves in 3 cups water. Remove from flame and leave it to cool down. Strain and add a teaspoon of olive oil to it apply this mixture to your intimate part a few times in a day.
Tea tree oil-
Tea tree oil is antibacterial and also cures vaginal dryness. To a tablespoon coconut oil add 2-3 drops of tea tree oil and apply to the affected part every day.
Chamomile flowers contain flavonoids and terpenoids. It treats inflammation and improves the symptoms of atrophic vaginitis. Also, it is useful in easing dryness, pain, itching and discharge. Steep a cup of dried chamomile flower in a pot filled with water for 15 minutes. When the concoction cools down to standard temperature strain it and washes you intimate parts with it.
Olive oil is a natural lubricant and is rich in unsaturated fatty acids that enhances hydration and fix epithelial tissues. Apply olive oil to your vagina a few times in a day.
Flaxseeds are rich in vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids. Regular intake of flaxseeds keep the level of estrogen high and combats vaginal dryness.
If you are suffering from vaginal dryness, redness, itching or painful sexual intercourse, you are not alone suffering from symptom so don’t be embarrassed to talk to the doctor about it
Dr. Ritu Kumari Gupta: Professionally a homeopathic doctor and a dietician Dr. Ritu Kumari Gupta is passionate about writing health and parenting blogs. She believes in holistic approach towards health and well being.