Vaginal Dryness

The Bartholin and skene glands in the entrance of the vagina discharge a clear and slippery liquid for the vagina. The vagina must be very slippery for a healthy and painless sexual intercourse. The vagina getting wet with this discharge is called ‘’vaginal lubrication’’.

What is vaginal dryness?
Vaginal dryness is when the vagina does not get wet enough during sexual intercourse or it is not slippery as normal. It is a common sexual symptom that has negative effects on people’s lives. Sexual intercourse may be painful for the woman in such cases.

What are the causes of vaginal dryness?

Causes of vaginal dryness (lack of vaginal lubrication):

  • Menopause
  • Increase in milk hormone (Hyperprolactinemy)
  • Vaginal infections
  • Certain drugs
  • Extreme stress
  • Defect in the vaginal flora
  • Washing the inside of the vagina (vaginal shower)
  • Inserting an excessive amount of suppositories, tampons and medicine into the vagina

Causes of vaginal dryness due to sex (lack of vaginal lubrication):

  • Inactive sexual drive
  • Sexual arousal problems
  • Disorder, mistrust, communication problems with the sexual partner
  • Pain during sexual intercourse (Disparoni) and Vulvar Vestibulitis Syndrome

Vaginal dryness during menopause
Lack of vaginal lubrication is often seen during menopause due to it being a hormonal problem and the oestrogen levels being low during menopause. During this time local (regional) suppositories or crèmes to prevent vaginal dryness will solve sexual intercourse problems.

An increase in prolactine hormone is a cause of vaginal
The increased ‘’prolactine (milk hormone)’’ during the postnatal and breastfeeding periods, after birth, may subdue the oestrogen hormone and cause dryness in the vagina. Sometimes, apart from these periods, ‘’adenomas in the hypophysis glands’’ (benign hypophysis glands) may lessen the milk in the breasts (galactore) and reduce vaginal discharge.

Vaginal infections, certain medication, hyperprolactenemia (high prolactine hormone), vaginal showers (washing the inside of the vagina), stress, vaginal suppositories and medication may cause vaginal dryness.

‘’Pain during sexual intercourse’’ called dyspareunia is also due to vaginal dryness. This causes pain during sexual intercourse and prevents them from being aroused thus the glands cannot produce discharge.