Improving vaginal dryness, a common symptom of menopause, becomes necessary when symptoms become painful and interfere with your lifestyle. The Mayo Clinic estimates that 40 percent of menopausal women have some degree of symptoms including vaginal itching, pain, bleeding, burning and dryness. Excessive dryness can interfere with a woman’s sexual activity and contribute to psychological issues, such as depression. Because vaginal dryness often become chronic after menopause sets in, individual treatment methods must be utilized for relief. Vaginal dryness can be improved in several ways.
Talk to the doctor about using estrogen creams. These are inserted into the vagina and may cause fewer side effects than hormone replacement therapy (HRT). The creams work to strengthen vaginal tissues and return them to a more elastic state, relieving vaginal dryness. There are still dangerous side effects which can lead to cancer, reports the Mayo Clinic, so research this option carefully with your doctor.
Use the homeopathic remedy Sepia for vaginal dryness, suggests William Boericke in his book, “Materia Medica and Repertory.“ Sepia is recommended for women who are in menopause and are experiencing vaginal dryness, itching, a feeling of heaviness as though the uterus will fall out, hot flashes, irritability, sadness and lack of sexual desire. Consult a qualified homeopath for additional information, dosing protocol for Sepia and other remedies for treatment of menopause.
Eliminate perfumes, scented soaps, douches, lotions and feminine hygiene sprays. These products contribute to drying out vaginal tissues, adding to the ongoing problem of dryness.
Use herbs mixed with cosmetic-grade oils to treat vaginal tissues and soothe dryness, suggests Health Guidance. Salves made from calendula or comfrey are helpful and soothing for dryness, itching and irritation. These salves are available for purchase in herbal shops online, health food stores and from local herbalists. Make sure they do not contain other herbs or chemical additives. Calendula has anti-microbial characteristics that help fight infection; comfrey contains a natural compound that assists in the regeneration of healthy tissue in the vagina. Apply either salve lightly around the vaginal opening.
Eat phytoestrogens in the form of soy, tofu and flaxseed products. The University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC) explains how phytoestrogens are found in soy-based foods and in flaxseed and flaxseed oil. Both foods have been shown to reduce menopausal symptoms relieving vaginal dryness, irritation and hot flashes. Rather than using supplements which are not always fresh, add soy-based foods, such as tofu, soy milk and soy beans, as well as flaxseed and flaxseed oil to your diet.
Use olive or coconut oil on the outside of the vaginal entrance and just inside the edge. Both products are excellent for rejuvenating dry, irritated tissues and for keeping vaginal dryness at bay. Cosmetic-grade olive oil is available at pharmacies and coconut oil should be pure, without other oils or additives.