What exactly is vaginal dryness, what causes it and how can it be alleviated?
Vaginal dryness and discomfort during intimacy are not the taboo subjects they once were. With more women than ever entering menopause, these complaints are more commonplace and should be part of routine conversation between women and their gynecologists. During perimenopause, (the 10 or so years prior to losing your period) and menopause (once you have been without your period for a full year) the ovaries make less and less estrogen. This can lead to vaginal changes including dryness and more delicate, less elastic tissue. In fact, other causes of vaginal dryness include medications such as antihistamines and birth control pills or can be caused by other medical conditions, such as Sjogrens disease. The reduction of estrogen in a woman’s body can lead to vaginal atrophy, thinning of the skin and or dryness leading to daily discomfort, a reduced sexual drive and painful intercourse.
“In the USA there are approximately 64 million postmenopausal females, 32 million or 50% of them, suffer from a degree of GSM or genitourinary syndrome of menopause. It is estimated that only about 7% of women are treated for this condition which demonstrates a huge unmet medical need. Women need not grin and bear it,” says Dr Michael Krychman. “One survey, called the REVEAL Survey, illustrated that almost 7 in 10 women endure painful sex as part of the normal part of growing older. There are many safe effective natural ways now on the market to help eliminate the issues of vaginal dryness and painful sex.”
Thankfully there are remedies for these complaints. While estrogen or hormonal replacement may be advised for some, they are not suitable or desirable for many. Thus, vaginal moisturizers and lubricants are mainstay treatments to maintain daily comfort and pleasurable intimacy for women of all ages. While water based and silicone lubricants are popular, a novel and incredibly well received newer option are products with coconut oil.
One such product is the Just Pure Essentials, JUST Love Coconut MCT oil brand, made with organic, edible plant based ingredients that are free of any chemicals or preservatives. A Taste For Life ‘Essentials Award’ winner for Best New Body Care of 2015, JUST Love addresses a woman’s need for healthy products with clean ingredients that feel good and perform well. JUST Love is doctor recommended, to be used daily as both a luxurious intimate massage oil and a nurturing moisturizer for delicate skin. Never sticky or greasy, JUST Love is one of the few intimate moisturizers that is silky smooth, does not need to be washed off and can be used both internally and externally. The flavored varieties add a pleasurable element and enhance sensory pleasures, an added benefit to help women feel good about themselves and enjoy intimacy again.
While menopause may be inevitable, the discomfort from vaginal dryness and painful sex are not!
- Estrogen’s Effects on the Female Body, Health Encyclopedia, University of Rochester Medical Center
- Estrogen and its Effect on Vaginal Atrophy in Post-Menopausal Women, Charlotte Kelley, MSN, RN, GNP, ARNP for Medscape.com
- Impact of Vulvovaginal Health on Postmenopausal Women: A Review of Surveys on Symptoms of Vulvovaginal Atrophy, Sharon J Parish,1 Rossella E Nappi,2 Michael L Krychman,3 Susan Kellogg-Spadt,4 James A Simon,5 Jeffrey A Goldstein,6 and Sheryl A Kingsberg7, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3735281/Just Pure Essentials, JUST Love brand; www.justpureessentials.com/philosophy
Dr Michael Krychman, SCCSHSM
Dr Krychman is the acting head physician on the Exotic Essentials advisory board . As a world renowned doctor of sexual medicine, a board certified obstetrician and gynecologist and a clinical sexual counselor and author, Dr Krychman has devoted his career to helping patients and their partners overcome sexual health challenges and experience a higher quality of physical intimacy. Dr. Krychman is also a specialist in survivorship medicine and provides life coaching and care plans to optimize the health and wellness of patients with chronic diseases or cancer. Dr Krychman is the director of the Southern California Center for Sexual Health and Survivorship, medical director of sexual medicine at Hoag Hospital, Newport Beach California and has previously worked and served on medical boards in New York and Pennsylvania. He also holds certificates and has been trained in Sexual Education, Public health and Human Sexuality, Erotology, Sexology and is certified as a Forensic Sexual Addiction Counselor. Dr Krychman also works as a consultant with other top pharmaceutical and nutraceutical companies in product development and lectures across the country on sexual health.
Dr Alyssa Dweck, MD
Alyssa Dweck, MS, MD, FACOG, is a full-time practicing OB/GYN in Westchester County, New York. She provides care to women of all ages and has delivered thousands of babies. A graduate of Barnard College, she has a Masters Degree in Human Nutrition from Columbia University and her Medical Degree from Hahnemann University School of Medicine in Philadelphia, now named Drexel University. Dr. Dweck trained at Lankenau Hospital in Wynnewood, Pennsylvania, where she was Chief Resident in 1994. She is proficient in minimally invasive and robotic surgery and has a special interest in and advanced training in the field of female sexual medicine. She is an Assistant Clinical Professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Science at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. She has served on her medical group’s board of directors in addition to ethics, quality assurance, and peer review committees. She is on the medical advisory board of Hope’s Door, a shelter from Domestic Violence and is a medical consultant for Stepup-Speakout.org a web community dedicated to resources and support for breast cancer related lymphedema. Dr. Dweck is a published author and is on the Health Advisory Board of Family Circle Magazine and contributed regularly to YM Magazine, in a series called “paging Dr. Dweck”. She has also contributed to Cosmopolitan, SHAPE, Family Circle, and Girl’s Life in print in addition to online sites including MORE.com, Foxnews.com, Parents.com, Sheknows.com, Shape.com, ivillage, Minerva Place, ThirdAge.com, and PhillyNews.com. Dr. Dweck lectures at various Westchester public schools on relevant gynecologic subjects, most recently, Sexually Transmitted Infections. She was a research assistant for Dr. Joyce Brothers.