Changes to the vagina and bladder occur around menopause - theses areas are very oestrogen sensitive and as levels of oestrogen fall many women notice discomfort.
Often the first sign of reduced oestrogen to the vagina is less lubrication during sexual activity. Some women actually describe increased vaginal secretions - this is usually a later sign of dryness when the vagina tissues are so depleted secretions leak through the thinning vagina walls. This increased discharge has a particular odour which some women feel is unpleasant. It is normal and not a sign of infection. The vagina becomes less acidic which means less natural protection from thrush. The bladder can also become "dry" leading to sensations like having a urinary infection - even though urine samples test negative for infection.
A range of effective treatments are available. Understanding the differences and choosing the right products are vital.
During menopause disturbed sleep and poor sleep quality can be a huge problem. Swinging oestrogen levels can cause night sweats, heat intolerance, insomnia and occasionally nightmares.
Difficulty falling asleep, or falling into a deep sleep quickly only to be wide awake a few hours later - or intermittent waking throughout the night - often due to night sweats - are typical experiences during menopause. Lack of sleep can play havoc with our wellbeing, and quickly lead to anxiety and stress. All other menopause symptoms, and life worries, feel worse without good restorative sleep.