Vaginal dryness?! Gasp! Can your thyroid cause chaos “down there?!” The unfortunate truth is that vaginal dryness and other blush-worthy bedroom problems are extremely common.
Feel like your lady parts are more like the Sahara desert these days? Wonder exactly where you misplaced your libido? Take heart! We’ll look at how to stop vaginal dryness and support sexual health–with or without thyroid problems.
Also, we’ll discover the do’s and don’ts of keeping those nether regions in tip-top shape so that you can alleviate embarrassing symptoms, feel more like yourself and even whip out that “Do Not Disturb” sign again.
Vaginal Dryness & Libido: Effects of the Thyroid
First, let’s get the 411 on exactly how Hashimoto’s or hypothyroidism can change your sexual desire, performance and vaginal health. Your thyroid hormones have a huge role in the quality of your sex life. Too little thyroid hormone can cause changes to desire and pleasure. Studies indicate that women with thyroid issues are more likely to experience libido issues.
How Your Thyroid Affects Your Sex Life
As thyroid hormones drop, you might find these symptoms barging into your bedroom:
- Vaginal dryness
- Pain during and/or after intercourse
- Lower sex drive
- Struggles with arousal
- Problems with orgasm
Thankfully, restoring the declining thyroid hormones in Hashimoto’s and hypothyroidism is usually a big step in the right direction. Research shows optimal thyroid hormone levels can help with these symptoms.
That’s really good news considering the fact that vaginal dryness can lead to other problems, too.
Vaginal Dryness Increases Risk of Infections
Just having vaginal dryness (a.k.a. atrophic vaginitis) may cause even more irksome issues. Can you believe it?!
Here are some of the additional problems one might experience with the already super-unpleasant lack-of-moisture issue.
- Vaginal infections
- Urinary tract infections
However, changes in thyroid hormones aren’t the only reason you find yourself experiencing the awful symptoms of vaginal dryness. Sex hormones, especially estrogen, play a huge role.
Menopause, Sex Hormones & Vaginal Dryness
Vaginal dryness is oftentimes caused by a deficiency in estrogen. Estrogen gives vaginal tissue its elasticity and moisture.
Hello there, menopause and perimenopause! Nice knowing ya, estrogen! It’s estimated that up to 50 percent of women experience vaginal dryness during menopause, and around 20 percent actually seek out treatment.
But, hormone balance can be an issue well before these shifts in life stage. Vaginal dryness can occur at any age. A key hormone for sexual health is DHEA. Get this! Your body can start pulling back a bit on DHEA production as early as your twenties! Less androgens like DHEA can mean a lower libido.
Other times you might notice a change in vaginal lubrication due to a decrease in estrogen include during breastfeeding or following childbirth.
Other Causes of Vaginal Dryness
There are many reasons someone might notice a change in the amount of moisture “down there.” Causes of vaginal dryness may be related to:
- Irritating self-care products
- Antihistamines for seasonal allergies
- Some types of antidepressants
- Sjögren’s syndrome
- Excessive stress
- Intense exercise
- Tampons with too high absorbency
Using standard body lotions on the vaginal area is a big no-no, as well as douching. Scented soaps are another culprit. Let’s look at better ways to care for this special area.
10 Tips to Boost Libido, Prevent Dryness & Increase Vaginal Health
While it’s certainly important to, ahem, get to the bottom of your moisture issues, in the meantime, let’s explore avenues that support your overall vaginal health pronto.
Here’s 10 natural ways to help ignite your passion and support your sexual vitality ASAP.
Get Clean Soaps
The pH balance of your lady parts has a delicate balance. Upsetting the microbiome of your nether regions isn’t a great idea. Harsh scented soaps, or those that contain phthalates can disrupt the proper pH needed to prevent infection.
Phthalate chemicals are what give plastic its flexibility and can be found in children’s toys, plastic food containers and, yes, personal cleaning products.
When purchasing soaps, look for ones without this ubiquitous chemical. As a rule of thumb, if you can’t read the ingredient list, then steer clear and keep looking.
Here are some examples of abbreviations for phthalate-containing formulations:
- DBP, or di-n-butylphthalate
- DEP, or diethyl phthalate
- DMP, or dimethyl phthalate
- BzBP, or benzyl butyl phthalate.
Use Organic Soaps
Dr. Bronner’s and Tom’s of Maine are two brands that won’t contain suspicious chemicals. Organic glycerine soaps and a little warm water is all you need to properly clean delicate vulva tissue.
Vulva and Vagina
Wait. What’s the difference between the vulva and vagina?! A bit of anatomy review may be helpful. The vulva is external and includes the folds of sensitive skin tissue, the inner and outer vaginal “lips.” Secretions prevent friction and protect against infection. The vagina is internal and extends to the opening of the uterus, a.ka. the cervix.
2. Skip the Brazillian Wax
Brazilian waxing can burn skin and leave you prone to infections. Need a better solution? Check out laser hair removal.
3. Shave with Care
Warm shower + sharp razor + dry skin can equal a more than just nicks! It can mean an opportunity for infection, too!
If purchasing a shaving cream, check out Dr. Bronner’s Shaving Soaps. They include shikakai powder. This Ayveric herb is known for its unique cleansing property. Also, it is rich in antioxidants and vitamins.
Alternatively, you can just give coconut oil a try. It adds a bit of moisture while also unleashing its mighty antimicrobial properties.
4. Avoid Special Femine Cleaners
Do not buy in to marketing for special “feminine” cleansers or lubes. You want to avoid all products with fragrances and dyes on the vulva, which is a hormone-sensitive tissue.
5. Use a Natural Lube and Moisturizer
Go au naturale when it comes to adding a bit of moisture!
Try aloe vera gel or pure coconut oil to moisturize painfully dry areas. Don’t use lotions or creams due to the risk of infection.
Lubricants: Aloe Vera vs Coconut Oil
Aloe vera gel can be used internally as a lubricant to help with painful intercourse. It has antibacterial and antifungal properties. Please note, some aloe vera products may contain artificial ingredients. So, look for pure aloe vera gel. It is safe for condoms and most skin types. If you have sensitive skin, it might not be a bad idea to test a small amount to see if you have a reaction before using it.
Similarly, some people use coconut oil as a natural lubricant. However, it is important to note that it can break down condoms! Oh-no!
5. Toss the Thong
When thongs became popular, there was a huge increase in the number of bladder and vaginal infections! Why? Because that moving fabric tends to let fecal bacteria migrate. If you suffer from recurring infections – add a little fabric to your backside, at least for now!
6. Try Cotton Lingerie
No worries, we’re not talking granny panties here!
While working to boost your libido, it’s natural to want sexy intimates for the bedroom. And it is possible to find fabrics that are gentle on sensitive tissues and still make you feel vibrantly beautiful.
When searching for cotton lingerie, look for styles that avoid synthetic fibers, dyes, and lots of elastic.
7. Eat Foods that Support Libido, Urinary Tract Health
Wanting to heat things up in the bedroom? Maybe think about what you’re heating up for dinner. Including some omega 3-rich fish or serving some nuts or protein with the amino acid arginine. Omega 3’s help support vaginal elasticity and arginine helps blood flow.
Urinary Tract Health
Plagued by urinary tract infections? Foods high in antioxidants and that support the high pH levels needed to fight off bad bacteria are in order. Consider cranberries which may stop E. coli in its tracks. Ginger and pineapple may be helpful, too. You can also consider Designs For Health’s UT Synergy for uncomplicated urinary tract infections.
8. Femine Products
Select sanitary napkins and tampons without fragrances, chemicals or dyes. Change them often. Also, don’t be afraid to change your underwear multiple times a day, such as after a hard workout at the gym.
9. Treat Vaginal Tissue with Care
Your vagina has a cleaning mechanism that works a bit like saliva in your mouth. It naturally contains beneficial bacteria to fight infection and keep the perfect pH balance. Treat this delicate area with a bit of TLC.
- Always wash from front to back
- Consider a vaginal probiotic
- Urinate after sex; even if you don’t have to go. It may help prevent unwanted bacteria from traveling up the urethra.
10. Boost Your Desire with Targeted Supplementation
Specific herbs and nutrients can help ya in and out of the bedroom. Here are a few that patients have found helpful:
Designs For Health LibidoStim-F
LibidoStim-F is a natural, yet powerful herbs that helps promote female desire. It naturally decreases excess estrogen (which means low libido and additional weight) and increases blood flow and adrenal support.
I love it, use it, and recommend it regularly for patients (with positive results). Ideally supplements of this nature are introduced to your program once you are in “maintenance” mode and we’ve spent some time tackling other issues. But a healthy sex life is important – and we certainly want to include it in your “healthy life” plan!
*DO NOT use LibidoStim-F if you’ve been diagnosed with PCOS. Contact our team for other options in this case.
Designs For Health Adrenotone
Adrenotone is an all in adrenal support formula. It helps depletion from chronic stress.
Adaptogens such as Rhodiola, support blood glucose and strength. Low in estrogen? High in testosterone? The beauty of adaptogens is that they will adapt to your unique needs. Adrenotone supports thyroid function, too!
Get Your Customized Plan for Optimal Health
If you experience vaginal dryness or low libido, you are not alone. Use these steps to alleviate dryness while we work on the underlying hormone imbalances with supplements and your unique treatment protocol. Reach out today for a FREE 30-minute clarity call and let’s get to crafting your unique plan so you can start feeling like you again!