Vaginal dryness during the menopause is one of the most common concerns associated with declining female sex hormones. It is estimated that one in four women experience vaginal dryness during menopause and typical symptoms include itching, painful intercourse as well as urinary discomfort. Not just confined during menopause, vaginal dryness can occur several years before the onset of menopause and for many well beyond menopause.
Glands located near the neck of the womb are responsible for producing a fluid that keeps the skin and tissues in the vagina moist and supple. The production of this fluid is directly dependant on the levels of oestrogen within the body and declining levels of oestrogen during menopause lead to vaginal dryness. Declining oestrogen levels are also responsible for the thinning and inflammation of the walls lining the vagina making them weak and vulnerable to both bacterial and fungal infections. To make matters worse, some women may also experience pain in the pelvic region as blood circulation decreases with declining oestrogen levels. For some women, the weakness in the walls of the vagina and the muscles surrounding it may also result in a problem of incontinence. All these problems can make life very difficult, depressing and debilitating.