Vulvar and vaginal dryness are a common, yet ‘silent’ problem because many women feel embarrassed to talk about it with their partners, friends and even doctors. It can have a really negative impact on quality of life, yet only a quarter of women seek treatment. We’re here to change that and that’s why we’re so excited to share our newest product with you! You moisturize the rest of your body so why not your vulva and vagina? More Than Lip Service helps to treat the symptoms associated with vulvar & vaginal dryness, allowing you to embrace life again.
Vulvar & Vaginal Dryness Are Quite Common
Over half of women aged between 51 and 60 experience vulvar & vaginal dryness, leading to pain, irritation and burning. While it’s more common in older women, younger women aren’t immune. Around 17% of women aged 18-50 experience issues, even before menopause. The changes associated with aging is the main cause, but feminine sprays and harsh soaps, swimming pool & hot tub chemicals, detergents, and some medications can also lead to vaginal dryness. It may also be problematic during sexual intercourse, resulting in pain along with intimacy issues.
Here’s What Causes It
A normal, healthy vagina:
- Is kept supple and moist with natural lubrication produced by glands at the neck of the womb (the cervix). This moisture makes its way slowly down through the vagina, keeping it clean and removing dead cells. The moisture is slightly acidic, helping to keep the area, including the vulva and the labia healthy, preventing infections like thrush. Most women may notice a slight white vaginal discharge – this is perfectly normal.
- The Bartholin’s glands (two glands at the entrance of the vagina) produce extra moisture to aid sexual intercourse when a woman is aroused. However, a quarter of women aged 50-59 experience vaginal dryness problems during sex and 16% experience pain.
- In addition to the natural lubrication that makes its way down through the vagina, there’s also a thin layer of moisture that coats the walls of the vagina. This moisture helps sperm travel and survive in for sexual reproduction. It also helps to reduce friction during sexual intercourse.
As a woman gets older, a decline in estrogen production can cause the vaginal walls to thin, resulting in fewer cells that secrete moisture. Apart from age, vulvar and/or vaginal dryness may be associated with:
- Cigarette smoking
- Excessive stress
- Immune system disorders, such as Sjögren syndrome
- Rigorous exercise
- Some cancer treatments, such as radiation to the pelvis, hormone therapy, or chemotherapy
- Surgical removal of the ovaries
- Some medications, including douching, as well as some creams and lotions that are applied to the vaginal area.
These Are the Symptoms of Vulvar & Vaginal Dryness
Vulvar & vaginal dryness cause discomfort in the vaginal and pelvic regions along including:
- Loss of interest in sex
- Painful sexual intercourse
- Light bleeding following intercourse
- Urinary tract infections (UTIs) that don’t go away or that reoccur
- Vaginal itching or stinging
Beyond painful intercourse, untreated vaginal dryness can cause sores or cracking in the vagina’s tissues. It’s important to seek immediate medical attention if severe vaginal bleeding occurs.
This is How to Treat Vulvar & Vaginal Dryness
Although not life-threatening, vulvar & vaginal dryness can seriously impact your quality of life. Thankfully, treatments are available.
- Over-the-counter Lubricants. Similar to natural lubrication, these provide temporary relief from dryness and discomfort. Apply them to the area around the vulva (lips) and vagina just before sexual intercourse.
- Over-the-counter Vaginal Moisturizers. Longer lasting than lubricants, moisturizers like More Than Lip Service are designed to be used two to three times a week. They may be used externally or used internally and their effect lasts for days.
- Hormonal Treatments. Available by prescription, these creams and rings contain the estrogen hormone, which is released directly to the tissues. Pills are also an option.
Studies have shown that vaginal moisturizers made with hyaluronic acid and vitamin E (like More Than Lip Service) are comparable in efficacy to hormonal treatments and without the risk of side effects. (1,2) Check with your health care provider if you aren’t sure regarding your options.
(1) Chen J, Geng L, Song X, Li H, Giordan N, Liao Q. Evaluation of the Efficacy and Safety of Hyaluronic Acid Vaginal Gel to Ease Vaginal Dryness: A Multicenter, Randomized, Controlled, Open‐Label, Parallel‐Group, Clinical Trial. The Journal of Sexual Medicine. 2013;10(6):1575-1584.
(2) Stute, Petra. Is vaginal hyaluronic acid as effective as vaginal estriol for vaginal dryness relief?Multicenter Study Arch Gynecol Obstet . 2013 Dec;288(6):1199-201.