I have had several women contact me recently who suffer from Sjögren’s Syndrome; a chronic slowly progressive autoimmune disorder that inhibits the ability of the glands to secrete properly. It most commonly affects the natural production of tears, saliva and for women, vaginal lubrication.
With a ratio of 24 to 1, women are 24 times more likely to be diagnosed with Sjögren’s then men. The symptoms often start between 40-60 years of age, during the peri and post-menopausal stage for women. But it has also been seen in women as early as in their 20’s and 30’s.
Treatment for Sjögren’s focuses primarily on the dryness of the eyes and mouth. Neglected is the vaginal dryness that the majority of female patients also experience. This vaginal dryness is debilitating and painful, making intercourse difficult for both partners.
Doctors have suggested using a lubricant to help relieve the vaginal dryness and moisturize the vaginal wall. But not just any lubricant. Avoid lubricants with a jelly-like consistancy, they tend to clog the pores and obstruct the vaginas natural cleansing. Also, avoid water based lubricants because their benefits are only short-term and often leave you feeling dryer then before you used it. Continue reading Sjögren’s Syndrome, Vaginal Dryness and Menopause