The average age at which women reach menopause is 51, and most women experience some symptoms of the transition before reaching menopause. One of the most common symptoms of menopause is vaginal dryness. Regularly exercising the vagina, whether in the form of having sex with a partner or by yourself, can prevent or reverse the effects of vaginal dryness and vaginal atrophy.
Vaginal Dryness Explained
Vaginal dryness is one of the most common symptoms of menopause. Women go through menopause when their ovaries begin to produce less of the hormones estrogen and progesterone and hormone levels start fluctuating. This eventually leads to the end of monthly menstruation and the ability to reproduce. However, the shifting hormone levels have a wide range of effects on a woman's body, and one of these is vaginal dryness.
Lower estrogen levels cause vaginal dryness, which means that the vagina produces less moisture, leading to discomfort, itching, and pain during sex. Less estrogen also causes vaginal atrophy, which makes the vaginal tissue thinner, drier, and less elastic.
Combating Vaginal Dryness with Exercise
There is no evidence that aerobic exercise can help to reduce vaginal dryness. However, doing regular exercise is a fundamental part of overall good health. Exercise can help increase strength and fitness levels in different parts of the body, which can help make a person less susceptible to disease and infection.
Some popular exercises for vaginal health during menopause include yoga, Pilates, and Kegel exercises. Kegels may help in managing vaginal dryness because they can help strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. However, it is important to shower and change clothing shortly after aerobic exercise, since sweat can build up during a workout, leading to dampness in the groin area and causing yeast infections that agitate vaginal dryness.
There is no research that shows that cardiovascular exercise - sex not included - can directly reduce vaginal dryness. Therefore, if vaginal dryness is bothering you and lowering the quality of your life, it is best to see a doctor.
A doctor can prescribe hormone replacement therapy that can be applied directly to the vagina and greatly reduce the symptoms of vaginal dryness. There are also over-the-counter options such as vaginal lubricant, which can be applied directly to the vagina before sex in order to reduce friction during sex. Vaginal moisturizers can also be purchased and applied regularly to add moisture to the vagina.
One of the best treatments for vaginal dryness is arousal. Both sex and self-stimulation can help reduce vaginal atrophy and increase blood flow to the vagina, which increases vaginal moisture. Research shows that using a vibrator can also combat vaginal dryness. Usually, a combination of treatments are the best option for combating vaginal dryness. Click on the following link to learn about other ways you can treat your vaginal dryness.