What is Atrophy in Women?
Vaginal atrophy in women is diminishing, drying and inflammation of the vaginal walls due to lack of estrogen in your body. Atrophy is a physiological process of reabsorption and breakdown of tissues. Vaginal atrophy occurs most often after menopause. In most of the woman, vaginal atrophy not only makes intercourse painful but also leads to distressing urinary symptoms.
What are the Symptoms of Atrophy in Women?
These are the following symptoms of atrophy in women :
- Vaginal burning
- Genital itching
- Vaginal discharge
- Burning with urination
- Urgency with urination
- Urinary incontinence
- Light bleeding after intercourse
- Discomfort with intercourse
- Decreased vaginal lubrication during sexual activity
- Shortening and tightening of the vaginal canal
What are the Causes of Atrophy in Women?
There are few causes of atrophic vaginitis or atrophy in women such as:
- During the years leading up to menopause
- After surgical removal of both ovaries
- Pelvic radiation therapy for cancer
- Chemotherapy for cancer
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What are the Risk Factors of Atrophy in Women?
There are some risk factors for atrophy in women :
- Smoking affects your blood circulation and as result, the vagina and other tissues do not get enough oxygen.
- Smoking also reduces the effects of naturally present estrogens in your body. Women who smoke typically experience an earlier menopause.
- No sexual activity will increase the blood flow and makes your vaginal tissues more flexible.
What are the Complications of Atrophy in Women?
Two major complications in atrophy are:
- Vaginal infections. Changes in the acid balance of your vagina make vaginal infections.
- Urinary problems. Urinary changes associated with GSM ‘genitourinary syndrome of menopause’ can contribute to urinary problems. You might experience increased frequency or urge of urination or burn with urination. Some women experience more UTI or incontinence.
How to Treat Atrophy in Women?
These are the different ways to treat atrophy:
- Water-based, glycerine-free lubricants can help to reduce discomfort during sex.
- Apply water-based vaginal moisturizers every 2 to 3 days. Their effect lasts longer than a lubricant.
- Applying topical estrogen cream directly to the vagina relieves symptoms easily and effectively. It also reduces the exposure of the bloodstream.
- Oral estrogen is also an option.
- An estrogen-releasing ring can remain in the vagina and release hormones to address the changes.
- Systemic estrogen therapy is available as a skin patch, an implant under the skin, tablets, or a topical gel.
What are the Prevention of Atrophy in Women?
- Using vaginal estrogen before the condition becomes severe can be a way to protect the vagina.
- Regular sexual activity may help prevent atrophic vaginitis. Use a vaginal lubricant in soothe mild cases during sexual intercourse.
- As long as the vagina have sufficient levels of estrogen, sexual activity can also show benefits for both the elasticity and flexibility of the region. The women who are sexually active report fewer symptoms of atrophic vaginitis when compared to women who do not regularly have sexual intercourse.
The article is based on a condition, atrophy in women, Here we describe its symptoms, causes, risk factors, complications, treatment, and preventions as well. The major cause of this disease is menopause. So, if you go through with it, and ever feel any of all above symptoms then consult your gynecologist as soon as possible. Always keep in mind take a good and healthy diet and take proper medications as well.
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