Vaginal Health as You Age

You've never had a vaginal infection. Urinary problems common in perimenopause include urinary tract infections (UTIs) and decreased bladder control or urinary incontinence. Lichen sclerosus causes intense itching around the vulvar tissues. Although women of all ages can experience distressing sexual health related issues, women in menopause are more prone to them, particularly vaginal atrophy, which can lead to lack of vaginal moisture and painful intercourse, according to JoAnn Pinkerton, MD.

  • The first thing to find out is what type of vaginitis you are experiencing through a simple test that your health care provider can do for you.
  • Topical contraceptives, like foam and even condoms can also cause vaginal itching and irritation in some women.
  • It is not easy to get out,” she said.
  • With bacterial vaginosis, you may have vaginal discharge that’s grayish, foamy, and smells fishy.
  • Menopausal symptoms can be quite intense for women who have undergone induced menopause, and many women have to use hormone replacement after having these procedures.
  • Treatment ESTROGEN REPLACEMENT Because the lack of circulating, natural estrogens is the primary cause of atrophic vaginitis, hormone replacement therapy is the most logical choice of treatment and has proved to be effective in the restoration of anatomy and the resolution of symptoms.
  • There are few things more uncomfortable than vaginal itching.

Prescription medications include: Vaginal health is also about things like preventing incontinence, and cancer detection (so get a Pap Smear! )Bacterial vaginosis. On average menopause occurs as women reach early to mid-50 years. During this time, which may precede several years before menopause, fluctuations in menstrual cycles and hormonal changes occur.

There's no strong association between perimenopause and yeast infections. In fact, many women actually have more yeast infections earlier in adulthood, thanks to oral contraceptives and an increased frequency of sexual activity. In this article, I’ll be talking about all things vaginal yeast infection. In a joint effort, NAMS and ISSWSH have named the condition "GSM" or Genitourinary Syndrome of Menopause to replace the term VVA, or Vulvovaginal Atrophy. If it seems like you're always getting another yeast infection, you may want to monitor your diet and skip out on too much of the sugary stuff. Avoid scented feminine products including pads and tampons, deodorant, washes, or sprays. Sorry, we could not find any Health Center for your search. In the case of metronidazole or clindamycin, initial cure rates in the treatment of BV were poor, in the range of 10% to 15%, and BV recurrence rates were as high as 80% among patients who showed an initial response.

Change tampons, pads, and panty liners often. Many studies have confirmed that probiotics are effective in the treatment of vaginal infections such as BV and VVC by positively altering the intravaginal microbiota composition. For patients, sexual activity – many women report getting a yeast infection after sexual intercourse. Some research was needed.

  • And number six, but definitely not least, is pelvic pain.
  • These types of estrogen treatments have not been shown to increase the risk of endometrial cancer.
  • Though researchers are still learning about our defense mechanisms, they continue to uncover fascinating aspects of our immune systems, which on the one hand protect us from pathogens like yeast, but on the other may leave some of us somewhat more vulnerable.
  • Orally is fine.
  • Did you know that yeast infections can happen anywhere in the body, including your mouth and skin?

Smells May Not Be Normal… (But The V Is Self-Cleaning!)

I’d treated her with anti-fungal, cultured her vaginal secretions and found negative growth; even used gentian violet to no avail. Atrophic vaginitis symptoms are relieved (with a dosage of 5 to 10 μg per 24 hours) without stimulation of endometrial proliferation, thereby eliminating the need to add opposing progestogen to the regimen. Getting to the source of the issue is what we’ve found to be most helpful and effective for yeast infections in the women we talk to.

Avoid baths, hot tubs and whirlpool spas. Patient information, this may point to pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) . If you have another condition you are being treated for, such as diabetes or pregnancy, you’ll also want to discuss any self-treatment options with your physician. Diet and lifestyle important to your gut health (digestion, detox, and immunity) are also relevant to the vagina. During intercourse, the walls become irritated, leaving tiny scars and scratches, enabling bacteria to thrive. These include: The key to maintaining a healthy vagina is to get acquainted with your body so that you know what ‘normal’ feels like to you, and you can recognize any changes.

Remember, having a vaginal yeast infection isn’t just about sex, it is about vaginal — and your overall — health. Other symptoms may include burning, redness, swelling; pain when you urinate or have sex; or usually a thick white odorless discharge that looks like cottage cheese. You can self-treat yeast infections with Over-The-Counter (OTC) treatments such as Monistat, terconazole or herbal preparations, apple cider vinegar with water or probiotic douche; but check in with your doctor should you have recurring infections because it could be a reflection of something going on elsewhere with your digestive or gastrointestinal tract or another problem. Wearing dry cotton underwear, loose fitting pants, and panty hose with a cotton crotch may help prevent vaginal yeast infections as well.

If your symptoms persist or recur and the situation warrants it, talk to your practitioner about stronger over-the-counter or prescription antifungal options.


This might include symptoms like itching, burning, or an unusual vaginal discharge—all of which might indicate a yeast infection or another type of infection. Natural measures like changing your diet and supporting your immune system can often arrest yeast overgrowth, resolve symptoms, and prevent recurrence. Vaginitis is an irritation of your vagina or vulva. Other types of vaginal infections may cause similar symptoms and need to be treated as well.

It also increases a women's risk of getting other sexually transmitted infections. The most common types of vaginitis are: Signs of perimenopause include: Symptoms of vaginal atrophy can include: Common peri-menopausal signs and symptoms include: Thrush is very common and at least three out of four women will experience thrush at some point in their lives. Reid R, Abramson BL, Blake J, Desindes S, Dodin S, Johnston S, et al.

  • The color, consistency, acidity, and other characteristics of the discharge may be predictive of the causative agent.
  • Most of them will contain chemicals, they will possibly affect the friendly bacteria even more.
  • It turns out that menopausal women are more susceptible to annoying yeast infections if they are on hormone replacement therapy.
  • The main bacteria found in the vagina is from the Lactobacillus species, the most common of which are L.
  • I have heard some good feedback on the Vulval Pain Society so you might wish to check their resources.
  • Systemic HRT may consist of oestrogen tablets, patches, vaginal rings, implants, or a combination of oestrogen and progestogen as patch or tablet.


Getting regular exercise, eating healthy foods, and staying involved in activities with friends and loved ones can help the aging process go more smoothly. Poor digestive health, , Mohammed, N. Luckily, there's a pretty quick solution for women who suffer from first-time yeast infections and exacerbated yeast infections that don't respond to topical treatment. If you experience a thick white cottage cheese discharge and/or a sweet odor you likely have a yeast or Candida infection.

It can feel like a burning or cutting pain and can really disrupt a woman’s life. There is no firm evidence to suggest that eating live yogurt or taking probiotic supplements will prevent candidiasis. Policies, (It’s important to note that when clinicians talk about gut microbiota, they often think of diversity as beneficial—which is the opposite for vaginal microbiota.). I treat these with an over-the-counter product, and they go away only to come back in a couple of weeks. Vaginal yeast infection. Once the cause is determined, vaginitis can be treated with medication or by stopping use of the irritating product.

Vaginal Thrush

To help manage problems such as painful sexual intercourse, use a lubricant during sexual intercourse. Featured content:, esophagitis is seen in severely immunocompromised patients. Vaginal oestrogen, in its various forms, has been reported as effective in relieving symptoms of GSM. 5 Representative species of probiotics include Lactobacillus, Lactococcus, Enterococcus, Streptococcus, and Bifidobacterium.

Usually, bacteria normally found in the vagina (lactobacilli) are outnumbered by other bacteria (anaerobes) in your vagina.

Yeast Infections

Avoid pads, tampons and toilet paper which are scented. Site information, in this article we will focus on the candida solutions. During sex, ensure your vagina is well lubricated, and use water-soluble lubricating jells. Will it stop once I'm menopausal? But when something happens to kill off the bacteria or change the conditions where yeast lives, it can multiply and cause mild to serious infections. It can cause vaginal burning, and soreness of the vagina and vulva, a frothy, greenish-yellow discharge, and burning during urination.

What are the symptoms of trichomoniasis?


The doctor may also request an infection screening, especially in cases of discharge or bleeding. While they aren't life-threatening, yeast infections are irritating -- both physically and mentally. Change out of wet swimsuits and workout clothes as soon as you can. Cancer treatment can also lower estrogen levels. A yeast infection can result in pain when peeing, pain during sex due to irritation and vaginal dryness, soreness and a thick white vaginal discharge. HRT and local estrogen application (such as vaginal rings, pessaries and creams). I am 46 years old, and I think I am perimenopausal.

Why is oestrogen important for vaginal health? The other thing you can do here is, well first of all, please don't use any of the vaginal deodorants that you get. The vulva and vagina are very sensitive thanks to lots of nerve endings. I offer a full 60-day money back guarantee if you do not see results. Much more complex change is a decline or significant lowering of the libido or the sex drive. The most commonly used antibiotics are metronidazole, available in both pill and gel form, and clindamycin available in both pill and cream form. A water-soluble vaginal lubricant may help to provide relief during intercourse, for mild cases.

What is a yeast infection? Both these organizations provide info on the following condition, Vestibulodynia, as well. What over-the-counter (otc) medications are used for the treatment of vaginal yeast infection? Along with changes in your periods, physical changes in your reproductive tract occur as well. During perimenopause, your body's production of estrogen hormones gradually declines.

But many women think that they have a yeast infection when they actually have another problem.

Hygiene Matters!

Listen to your body. Using knowledge from education through NAMS and ISSWSH, my team of providers can understand concerns, assess signs and symptoms, provide a thorough assessment, and offer science-based options to successfully treat such concerns. What is atrophic vaginitis?

I'm not on HRT specifically, but a lot of my friends are. The efficacy of probiotics in BV treatment was demonstrated in a clinical trial. “It’s really sad because people are kind of marginalized, like, ‘Oh, it’s just a yeast infection,’ but it can really consume a lot of people’s lives,” says Dr. Symptoms and treatment of infectious vulvovaginitis vary depending on the organism causing it. Why your dentist might recommend amoxicillin for abscessed tooth. 0, and speculum exam showed me pale flat vaginal walls with a yellowish discharge in the posterior fornix. It can be a shock to feel suddenly let down by one’s body and vaginal dryness can significantly impact sexual intercourse and intimacy for some women and leave many feeling inadequate, guilty and confused. Wash and dry your sportswear in between uses.

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Yes, your partner can catch it from you. Women with vaginal atrophy have a greater chance of chronic vaginal infections and urinary function problems. Depending on a woman’s unique set of genes and her immune system, protection from recurrent candidiasis may vary from woman to woman.

Hysterectomy, especially if the ovaries have been removed, results in sudden menopause. What are the symptoms?, wash your vaginal area every day. Avoid scratching and keep the area cool and dry. Your doctor will examine your cervix, vagina, and external genital area. Adequate estrogen replacement therapy increases the number of superficial cells. Discomfort not directly related to menopause. 5; this is essential for the body's natural defense against vaginal and urinary tract infections.

You will for some women find that the mucus, there's a change of smell. Keeping things in a balanced state down there is one of the key ways we’re going to keep vaginal yeast infections at bay and keep you feeling fresh. For some women, entering a new phase of life represents getting older and can be an emotional challenge.

Inside Pain:

Now, when you go from the "Sahara" to the "Amazon", so to speak, yeasties thrive. Some women with yeast infections notice an increase or change in discharge. Estriol is the weakest of the estrogens a woman’s body produces; however it is the best for vaginal discomfort in menopause. This can be an early sign of endometrial cancer.

These can help with vaginal and vulvar discomfort due to the drying and thinning of tissues. Additional advantages of systemic administration include a decrease in postmenopausal bone loss and alleviation of vasomotor dysfunction (hot flushes). 3, 7 Probiotics products are verified its efficacy on improving vaginal health by maintaining the normal vaginal lactobacilli microbiota.

HPV is the most common STI. When on antibiotics, it is especially important to take probiotics during treatment or soon after. Estrogen rings are higher-dose estrogen preparations and may increase a woman’s risk for endometrial cancer. Should I use an over-the-counter medication to treat a yeast infection? You may need to put on a sanitary pad to avoid messiness.