You May Have a Dry Vagina as a Symptom of Menopause
Almost every woman experiencing menopause can add dry vagina to her list of menopause symptoms. Highlight it with a day glow magic marker! Using personal lubricants is the easiest and safest solution to this problem.
Do We Have a Lubricant for You!
I feel like a barker at the county fair. “Step right up. Do we have a lubricant for you! We’ve got oil-based lubricants, silicone lubricants, water-based lubricants, organic lubricants, personal lubricants for women and for men, scented, flavored or sweetened.” And we’re going to tell you about them all in this post.
We Recommend Water-Based Personal Lubricants
Because I hate the thought of putting a bunch of chemicals up my vagina, I looked around for alternatives and found some. It seems to me that organic, water-based lubricants are the best for helping with vaginal dryness or painful intercourse. Water-based lubricants don’t stain, and they wash off easily with soap and water. You may have to reapply once in a while, but it’s better than adding a Teflon coating to your vagina. Also, they don’t break down the latex in condoms like oil-based lubricants are apt to do. And no one needs a broken condom!!!!!
Additions to Some Over-the-counter Lubricants
Many water-based, over-the-counter lubricants for menopause dryness are made up of 90% deionized water in which a glycerin (an emollient), a polymer (for the slip slide), and an antibacterial agent (to keep you germ free) have been added. Sounds like a good time…a Slip-and-Slide is our favorite activity at parties and this would make it healthy, too!
Glycerin is Fine
Glycerin is vegetable-based, and though you want to be sure of its purity, there are no side effects that I can find. Some women believe that the sugar in glycerin causes yeast infections. But surprisingly, glycerin is found in many remedies for treating yeast infections. Go figure. This seems counter-intuitive but we’re going for the Slip-and-Slide factor here.
What is a Polymer and Why did that Man Put it in My Lubricant?
I wanted to know exactly what a polymer was. I discovered that the type of polymers used in lubricants for women are a man-made product originally developed for other uses. They make machines run smoothly and guns shoot straight. So I wondered if, when men were developing lubricants for women, they thought, ‘Why not put it in a woman’s vagina, too?’ Perfect. Just what we needed. Apparently, they used a lubricant with added polymers to help horses birth babies. Vets realized quite quickly that this polyethylene polymer was rapidly absorbed through the peritoneal cavity and that it caused an acute, fatal toxicity to both the mother and baby. In 2004, a paper was presented at the 50th Annual Convention of the American Association of Equine Practitioners where they put out a warning to the community about this stuff. They may have banned the use of polymers with horses yet we still find this it in lubricants for women…….Just say neighhhhhh!
Secret Antibacterial Agent….for What?
Then they add an antibacterial agent. I have this picture in my mind of a little bacteria with a trench coat cinched at the waist, a magnifying glass in its little hand. What for? Must we disinfect after intercourse? Maybe the manufacturers are just watching out for us, but somehow I don’t think so. More research needed.
Oil-based lubricants are made from petroleum and should never be used with latex condoms because they break down the latex. However, they might be fine with natural skin condoms. They can also provide a medium for bacterial growth, particularly if your immune system has been weakened by chemotherapy. Ah ha! Perhaps that’s why they added the antibacterial agent…
Other Chemical Soup-bricants
Some lubes include nonoxynol-9, and others use benzalkonium chloride as a spermicide. Others have added flavor or scent.
Then there are silicone lubricants made from all sorts of nasty sounding stuff like cyclomethicone, dimethiconol, silicone, and dimethicone copolyo. A little scary, especially since these ingredients are hard to pronounce! Who knows what they really do?
Your Personal Chain Reaction
Many women get a reaction to the chemicals found in non-organic lubricants. So beware, and give your chosen lubricant a test run before you really start using it. Specific personal lubricants that you can purchase can be found on another page on our site.
Once, on vacation with the girls, I had a friend who we heard screaming in the bathroom. When we rushed in to see what was the matter, she told us that she had needed a personal lubricant to insert a tampon but had left her usual lubricant at home. Finding some hand-cream in the bathroom, she put some in her eye, figuring that if it stung, she probably shouldn’t use it in her vagina. Her eye was red and swollen. After helping her rinse out her eye, we all had a good laugh but I guess she got the one with some of these chemicals in it. (We were young and a bit stupid!) So I would suggest instead, that you dab it behind your ear for that trial run — your skin is sensitive there. After all, some are even scented! Might even work better than your perfume.