Sexual Health is General Health:Cultivating Intimacy
By Dr. Michael Krychman
It is common knowledge that having a close intimate and sexual life will help promote your overall health and wellness. We know that vigorous lovemaking, may count as cardiovascular exercise not only promoting loss of weight but improving fitness. Sexual intimacy and activity will increase your heart rate, as well as work on developing muscle strength. Some report improvement in their pelvic floor support and muscles. Sex bolsters your immune response, relieves stress and may also enhance your overall mood. Sexual bliss promotes happiness. Bolstering your neurotransmitters after an orgasm has also been linked to a sound restful night’s sleep.
But where does vaginal health fit into the complete story? Currently, there are approximately 64 million post-menopausal women in the United States, and after approximately 5 years into the menopausal transition almost half of them will experience vaginal dryness that can lead to painful intercourse, lower sexual interest and even in extreme cases, sexual abstinence. Only about 7% or 2.8 million mature women are being treated with prescription medications. Untreated and unrecognized women are suffering the conspiracy of vaginal dryness and painful sex. While many mature women experience severe vulvar, vaginal, and clitoral atrophy as a result of deprivation of estrogen, it is shocking to know that many young women, too, may also suffer silently with painful sex. There are over 300 medications that cause dryness including, in some, the oral contraceptive pill.
Untreated vaginal dryness often leads to the deterioration of intimacy between a couple. She shies away from intimate activity, avoiding, and may remain withdrawn due to her fear of pain. Many women still remain apprehensive regarding local hormones for the treatment of vaginal dryness and atrophy. Sexual health and sexual wellness may be forgone due to the intense fear of developing cancer.
The consequences of the menopausal transition results in a rapid and sharp decline in the “sexy hormones”, estradiol and testosterone. Changes in hormonal levels, lead to changes in anatomy including the sexual organs, vaginal, vulvar, clitoral dryness, changes in libido, increased latency to orgasm and decreased intensity of orgasmic response. A woman who experiences painful intercourse may feel less feminine, less sensual and may impact her sexual self-esteem leading to relationship tension.
Sexual dysfunction and painful intercourse have many acceptable treatments. While minimally absorbed local vaginal estrogen can be used, the front-line treatment remains non hormonal over-the-counter vaginal moisturizers and lubricants.
Lubrigyn Cream® is a non-hormonal vaginal moisturizer that contains high quality ingredients including elastin and hyaluronic acid. Its unique formulation helps nurture the dry, irritated vaginal lining and helps restore, revive, and replenish the elasticity and pliability of the vaginal tissues. Lubrigyn Cream® can improve the integrity of the vaginal epithelium, which leads to improved pleasure and comfort during intercourse. It sets the backdrop for improved sexual pleasure and excitement during intimate encounters.
Sex in a relationship can act as an interconnected glue or bond that helps maintain the intimacy and emotional commitment between partners. Hug, touch and be intimate! Orgasms can increase the famous “hormone of love”, oxytocin, the cuddle and bonding hormone.
Vaginal health without dryness or irritation remains the cornerstone for women to be able to enjoy pleasurable intercourse. Mutually sexual satisfaction will lead to overall contentment, happiness, and strengthen the bond between the couple. Good sex can be associated with a positive life outlook and improved quality of life.