The female body is an amazing and confusing thing. It has fascinated and frustrated us from girlhood to old age. Just when we get used to it doing one thing, it all of sudden starts to do something completely different. Thank god for girlfriends, wine and Google! We’ve all spent a bottle or two trying to figure out what’s going on in there. In this 3 part blog series, we're going to give tips and tricks on enjoying and understanding your body at all of it's stages.
At Indulgence, we believe a crucial part of loving your body is understanding it! For years, the topic of menopause and its effects on a woman's sex life was a taboo subject and typically avoided.
Lucky for us all, women are coming out of their shell and opening up more about the effects of menopause and its impact on their sex lives - thanks to shows like Sex and the City, Frankie & Grace, and our very own superstar mama talking openly and candidly about sex after 50 - it’s no longer an off limit subject.
While we can’t predict exactly when menopause will start, statistics show that women in their early 50’s are the average.
Each woman will have their own sexual demons to deal with during menopause and not necessarily have the same symptoms and issues as the next woman.
One thing we will all experience though, is reduced estrogen levels and we can blame those reduced levels for many of the discomforts and side effects of menopause.
Some of the most common complaints we hear about are:
- dryness inside the vagina
- thinning of the vaginal wall (Uterus Lining)
- weakening vaginal tone (PC muscles)
- sensitivity to infections
- lack of desire
- failure to achieve sexual satisfaction
What can we do on a daily basis to assist us in and make our journey through menopause more pleasant and comfortable? Here’s some of our favorite tips to keep your mojo pre, post, or during menopause.
Let’s take a look at our feminine hygiene and how we control our PH balance. It’s incredibly important to keep and maintain a healthy flora of good bacteria and only wash away the bad and odor causing bacteria. Did you know that the vagina has the ability to self-clean? It really needs nothing more than a good rinsing each day with warm water. Try to avoid traditional soaps and body washes on your lady parts - They often contain irritating ingredients like glycerin, alcohol, perfumes, dyes, and preservatives. Soaps are designed to kill ALL bacteria, the good stuff we want to keep and the bad stuff we want to get rid of.
If you don’t like the idea of just using water, try using our favorite feminine wash Sliquid Splash. This great product is naturally derived using water, coconut oil and sea salt and is designed to maintain a healthy flora of bacteria and balanced PH. A gentle natural soap can bring a lot of comfort and guard you against sensitivity, irritation and help with dryness.
During menopause there is a lot of action (or lack of) going on in the vagina that can create discomfort. Many women assume that they must suffer through dryness during menopause. Some women only notice reduced lubrication during sexual activities and others will notice dryness and discomfort all the time.
Not only is dryness uncomfortable, it can also prevent you from getting ‘in the mood’. Lubricants such as Sliquid Satin are designed to moisturize your delicate tissues and are great to use during sexual activities and can be applied for comfort daily during your hygiene regime.
The vagina is normally self-lubricating, however it may stop working as efficiently during menopause as it did when you were younger. It’s important to treat the skin of your lady parts with a little TLC as we age. Using a good lubricant with aloe, vitamin E and B12 can help keep the skin down there moisturized and elastic. If not maintained the vaginal wall begins to thin and can possibly tear during penetration. Ouch!
The Bartholin glands are two little peas sized ducts at the opening of the vagina that produce lubrication only during sex, if you are experiencing difficulty or discomfort during penetration, it’s likely because these little glands need some attention first (foreplay!) These glands are trying to protect you against early penetration and want you to be fully stimulated before sex.
Sex is always better and more comfortable when things are nice and slippery so apply a good glycerin free lubricant as part of your foreplay routine. We like Sliquid Satin or Sutil Body Glide by Hathor. Apply some lubricant to the clitoris, labia, and don’t forget to slip some up inside your body as well! Get creative and have some fun when applying lubricant, using your fingers, a toy, or your partner.
Menopause is a pretty big topic, so we’re breaking up into categories. Stay tuned for next week’s article. We will be chatting about the importance of Kegel exercises during menopause and all of their wonderful health benefits.