DALLAS, TX – March 31, 2016 – PrevaLeaf, Inc. & MiddleSexMD partnered to study women’s experiences with, and comfort talking about, vaginal dryness during menopause.
Despite plentiful information, women are still surprised by menopause
92% of survey respondents reported experiencing vaginal dryness often or sometimes. This compares to an estimated 76% of women overall in menopause who experience vaginal dryness.
Despite plentiful available information about menopause and vaginal dryness, the study found that most women didn’t know what to expect from menopause. Over 50% stated they didn’t know what to expect, and an additional 35% stated menopause symptoms were worse or more severe than what they expected. Only 15% felt they were prepared for their symptoms.
The study pointed to one possible explanation for these findings: Women don’t all openly talk about vaginal dryness with friends, their partners or even their physicians. For example, 36% of women don’t talk about vaginal dryness with their doctors, 56% won’t speak about it with their friends, and 22% aren’t comfortable speaking about it with their partners. Instead, women may seek answers on their own from sources such as the internet. As one respondent reported: “I consult the internet about my dry, itchy vagina.” Some respondents reported that they wrestle with feelings of guilt. One woman said: “I guess I feel it’s an admission there’s something wrong with me sexually.”
Vaginal dryness can have a significant effect on a woman’s daily life as well as her sexuality, which can affect her relationship with her partner. For example, respondents reported: “(vaginal dryness) has had a terrible effect on my sex life”, it is “painful and [causes] bleeding”, “It has arrested my sex life”, “I was not expecting pain” and “I wonder why women are never prepared for the changes of this stage of life the way they are for menarche” (their first menstrual cycle) and “We never talked about sex [vaginal dryness] when I was growing up.”
“The results of this study support our mission to provide women natural, safe and effective products for women’s daily self-care routines to help them confidently take control of their vaginal dryness and sexual health,” says Dr. Rebecca Posten, CEO of PrevaLeaf, Inc.
“It’s so important for women to understand the normal changes in tissues, sensitivities, and responsiveness,” says Dr. Barbara DePree, menopause care specialist and founder of MiddlesexMD. “It’s entirely possible to keep our bodies and minds in shape for continued sexuality, but only if we’re willing to talk about what we’re experiencing and learning.”
Insights from the study will be released in upcoming articles published by MiddlesexMD.
Middlesex MD is a reliable, confidential women’s sexual health resource for information and products that can help women keep intimacy vital and joyful at any age. The website is led by Dr. Barb DePree MD, a gynecologist and menopause care specialist.
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