Ask the DoctorWhy should I pay attention to my vaginal ph?
Sondra asked 10 months ago

I am 74 years old & suffer from dryness for several yrs now.  My Dr. solution is estrogen cream insertion.  No, No  — cancer possible.
So, how do I apply the “cream” product into the virginal area?   How often should it be applied?   Once or twice daily??

1 Answers
Dr.Krychman Staff answered 10 months ago

Hello Sondra,

the vagina has many beneficial bacteria (normal vaginal flora) that supports and protects against infection. This environment helps secrete normal discharge that keeps the vagina healthy and clean. With an acidic environment and a balanced vaginal ph, the balance on the battlefield between the good and bad bacteria is maintained. Once you modify or upset this balance, the battlefield can change dramatically. The harmful flora, or irritation causing bacteria, can overgrow and create symptoms like excessive inflammation, foul smelling discharge, itchiness and painful vaginal tissues! At excessively high pH values, above 4.5, a woman may experience vaginitis, or redness and inflammation of the vaginal lining or mucosa. Infections like Candida (yeast) and Gardnerella Vaginosis (Bacterial Vaginosis) are then not uncommon. It is also important for women to understand, that during the female’s lifecycle, there are certain times in her life, when her vaginal environment may be altered. These changes may predispose her to painful infections!

Bottom line: The vaginal ph helps maintain the health of the vaginal mucosal lining. With estrogen, the vaginal tissues maintain their ridges, folds, elasticity and pliability and stretchability.

Lubrigyn Cream can be used often and many women report satisfactory moisturizing action with a small amount, applied 2-3 times per week. The Lubrigyn Cleansing Lotion, a specialized wash can be used daily. It is also important to use the over the counter products as directed. While many women can be helped with non-hormonal vaginal moisturizers, lubricants, and hybrid products like Lubrigyn Cream, some women may opt for minimally absorbed local vaginal estrogen products including cream, rings, intravaginal tablets or oral tablets. There are multiple methods to treat underlying vaginal dryness.
Minimally absorbed, local hormones may have some potential risks, although very low. It is always important to seek medical advice from your health care professional to assess your personal risks, should you be considering local vaginal estrogen therapy. Seek medical attention, get an examination and ask your questions concerning cancer or vaginal bleeding risks.
In addition, medication should be used as prescribed. Many different dosing schedules exists, so seek medical care. Do not be afraid to ask questions. Ask your health care provider and read the product labelling insert. It is important to get informed and take your medications as directed.