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There appear to be a million things no one taught you about pregnancy and childbirth. Postpartum dry skin down there is typical after delivery, although many women are unaware of it. You must be aware of this scenario to restore natural vaginal moisture and make intercourse more pleasurable. Here, we talk about the condition, why it happens, steps you can take to treat it, and how, if at all, it affects breastfeeding.
What Causes Vaginal Dryness?
Postpartum thyroid, an infection of the thyroid gland, can also induce postpartum vaginal dryness. When your thyroid is inflamed, it generates hormones that are essential to many body activities, including metabolism; however, when your thyroid is inflamed, it may produce too much or not enough thyroid hormones. The symptoms of postnatal vaginal dryness are as follows:
- sensitivity to cold
- dry skin
- difficulty sleeping
- weight gain
Apart from this, some other hormone-induced reasons specific to women include:
1. Menstrual cycle
During your menstrual cycle, they also cause the formation of a lining in your uterus. If a fertilized egg isn’t implanted in this lining, estrogen and progesterone levels fall, and the uterine lining sheds as part of your menstruation.
When you’re pregnant, your estrogen and progesterone levels skyrocket. The uterine lining grows into a placenta instead of being removed. In addition, the placenta begins to produce estrogen and progesterone.
3. After delivery
After giving delivery, the estrogen and progesterone levels plummet drastically. They recover to their pre-pregnancy levels within 24 hours after giving birth. Since estrogen can interfere with milk production, your body reduces estrogen even further when nursing. Postpartum vaginal dryness develops due to hormones, specifically estrogen and progesterone. They are mostly generated by your ovaries, which cause puberty, which includes breast growth and menstruation.
Estrogen is vital for sexual desire because it promotes blood flow to the genitals and vaginal lubrication. Many of the postpartum symptoms that women experience, such as hot flashes, night sweats, and vaginal dryness, are caused by a shortage of estrogen. To combat this, some women opt to take an estrogen supplement. Others prefer not to take one since it raises the chance of cancer and other complications, such as blood clots.
How Common Is Vaginal Dryness After Pregnancy?
If you are experiencing any of these or other symptoms, you may find some solace in knowing that you are not alone. Up to 10% of women get postpartum thyroiditis.
Your therapy will be determined by the type of postpartum thyroiditis you have. In the case of an overactive thyroid, your doctor may recommend beta-blockers to alleviate symptoms. If your thyroid is underproducing, your doctor may offer thyroid hormone replacement medication. But, how long does postpartum dryness last? If postpartum thyroiditis is the source of your vaginal dryness, be comforted that for 80 percent of women, thyroid function returns to normal within 12 to 18 months.
Other causes, like tiredness or postpartum depression, might contribute to the feeling of dryness if a patient is not nursing. If a patient doesn’t feel right, she should have her thyroid checked. Thyroid issues might affect up to ten percent of postpartum mothers.
Effect of Childbirth on Vagina
Childbirth and dryness after having a baby can cause your vaginal tissue to shrink, become less elastic, and become more prone to damage. The vaginal canal can also become irritated, causing burning and irritation.
Because of these changes, postpartum intercourse may be unpleasant, or you may suffer from internal dryness down there after childbirth. Take heart, though, because these symptoms should go away as your estrogen levels return to normal.
How to Help Vaginal Dryness Postpartum?
Despite postpartum vaginal dryness, you can still have a satisfying sexual life. The following suggestions can help you improve your postpartum sexual experience:
- Douches and personal hygiene sprays, which can irritate delicate vaginal tissues, should be avoided.
- Discuss your worries with your partner.
- When having sex, use a lubricant. (If your partner wears a condom, avoid petroleum-based lubricants, which can cause condom degradation.)
- Applying a vaginal moisturizer every few days is a good idea.
- Drink plenty of water. Maintain a healthy level of hydration in your body!
- Discuss with your doctor the use of an estrogen vaginal cream, such as conjugated estrogens or estradiol.
- Increase foreplay and experiment with new techniques and positions.
Postpartum Vaginal Dryness and Breastfeeding
Some women endure a lack of vaginal lubrication throughout their nursing experience, which may be irritating and even painful. The amount of estrogen, a feminine hormone, is reduced after birth and when breastfeeding. Breastfeeding your kid might lower your estrogen levels even further and promote vaginal dryness.
Fortunately, after we stop breastfeeding, this dryness disappears. This causes vaginal tissue thinning, similar to menopause. Patients are advised to use vaginal moisturizers, and if the patient’s symptoms persist, vaginal estrogen cream is another possibility. If something seems wrong with your body, always consult a healthcare expert.
If your postpartum symptoms linger, your pain is unbearable, or you are worried in any way, consult your OB-GYN and midwife. Infections, diabetes, and vaginismus (involuntary contractions) may all cause painful intercourse, so it’s critical to be open and honest with your healthcare practitioner about your symptoms.
Vaginal dryness can cause pain in the vaginal and pelvic areas. While several factors can cause this syndrome, vaginal dryness is seldom significant, and there are various medications available to aid with its treatment. There are additional steps you may do to avoid it. However, if you have persistent vaginal dryness, talk to your doctor about it so they can help you discover the correct solution.