It can lead to dryness, itching, burning and soreness, and can also make sex uncomfortable. But everyone is different, so symptoms vary between women. Hear four women discuss their experiences with vaginal dryness and what they’ve learnt along the way.
JACKIE: I associate vaginal dryness with being sore and burning after having a relationship.
KYRIACOU: It's sore, it's there constantly on my mind. Also, it is itchy, it’s is not a very nice experience to have.
SHEILA: You can actually feel a tightness inside.
CAMILLE: Painful sex.
JACKIE: Kills all spontaneity.
KYRIACOU: I didn't even know that you get vaginal dryness if you went through the menopause, I did not have a clue.
CAMILLE: There's no lubricant there, there's no sensation as such.
JACKIE: I knew from jokes on the telly and various innuendos over the years that older people didn't have sex anyway so it didn't matter. But it does matter.
KYRIACOU: Having a younger husband who, you know, sexually active. That also, it doesn't help with the psychological part of it because I feel that I'm failing as a woman. To me it's not a taboo, but to a lot of women it’s still a taboo and they won't talk about it and I wish they did.
SHEILA: I'm actually quite surprised.
JACKIE: That's quite shock.
KYRIACOU: Honestly, I did not know.
CAMILLE: I didn't know that it was that high.
SHEILA: I was not aware it was a progressive condition.
JACKIE: Like anything that goes wrong in the body, I think there's a lot of silence and maybe if we're more direct about problems people will smile a bit more and think, do you know what? I'm not the only one going through this.
SHEILA: If there was a treatment out there, I would take it.
KYRIACOU: It would mean so much. It would mean that I could wear the clothes I want to wear. It would mean that I could have sexual intercourse with my husband without feeling that I'm not a woman enough. Oh, it'd be wonderful.
Now that I know that there are other women experiencing this condition, I don’t feel alone
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