How Hormone Changes During Perimenopause & Menopause Can Affect Vaginal Balance

Regardless of a woman’s age, vaginal health is imperative to maintaining good overall health. Reaching perimenopause and menopause is certainly no exception. Although some women feel liberated during menopause, it can often be a confusing time, as women may also feel fearful of the unknown symptoms of menopause. Perimenopause and Menopause are different for every woman and it can manifest itself in a variety of ways. However, the typical symptoms include irritability, mood swings, hot flashes and night sweats.That said, the following is a closer look at how hormonal changes in perimenopause and menopause can affect vaginal balance.

Menopause Hormonal Changes

The following is a list of common hormonal changes in perimenopausal and menopausal women:

  • Estrogen: One of the most major ways in which a woman's body changes during menopause is the fluctuation of hormones. During menopause, there is often a decrease in estrogen level. Estrogen is important to the female body because after puberty, it helps regulate the menstrual cycle by controlling the growth of the uterine lining. Estrogen helps to keep the vagina moisturized and helps the vagina to maintain its elasticity.
  • Progesterone: Another major hormonal change to be aware of is that of changing progesterone levels. Progesterone is important for the female reproductive system because it prepares the lining of the uterus for fertilized eggs and also helps to maintain early pregnancy. During menopause, the production of progesterone is lowered, which causes periods to become irregular, heavier, and longer.
  • Testosterone: Lastly, women's testosterone levels also change during this time. Although testosterone is considered to be a "male hormone," it actually aids the female reproductive system in a number of ways. For instance, testosterone plays a major role in the production of estrogen, a woman's libido and maintenance of muscle mass. For most women, testosterone levels peak during their 20s and the levels start to slowly decline as they age.

How Hormonal Changes Affect Vaginal Balance

If you are wondering whether perimenopause and menopause can cause vaginal pH balance issues, the answer is yes. The effect of menopause on pH balance is a subject that many women ignore until they are forced to address it. Now that we have learned about the roles of the various hormones and how they can affect the body and vagina overall, let's look at how these changes can affect vaginal balance.

  • pH Level: One of the top changes to be aware of during perimenopause and menopause is how changing hormone levels can affect your pH level. For instance, studies have shown that women tend to have a higher vaginal pH level than those who are not menopausal. In fact, one study asserts that the average menopausal woman has a vaginal pH value of 5.3, while the normal vaginal pH value is in the acidic range, between 3.8 and 4.5. When the vagina's normal pH is off balance, bacteria can develop, causing odor and other feminine issues.
  • Vaginal Changes: Changes in hormone levels can cause other issues such as dryness, a change in elasticity, and can even lower your libido. Luckily, there are products on the market made especially to help women during menopause.

Key Takeaways

  • Women must pay special attention to their vaginal health during their perimenopausal and menopausal years.
  • Typical hormones affected during menopause are Estrogen, Progesterone and Testosterone. 
  • Symptoms of perimenopause and menopause can include irritability, mood swings, hot flashes and night sweats. 

How Can I Manage My Vaginal Health During Menopause?

If you are seeking help for vaginal issues during perimenopause and menopause, some of your options are moisturizers, rinses, suppositories, vitamins and more. pH-D has an entire line of holistic products that are designed to help you maintain your vaginal health during all stages of life. The Boric Acid Suppositories help eliminate any odor caused by an unbalanced pH level, which is common during menopause. And the Women’s Health Menopause Support supplement can help alleviate menopausal symptoms of irritability, mood swings, hot flashes and night sweats. No matter what your particular vaginal concerns are, there are products on the market that can help you address these issues for the short and long-term. Also, be sure to consult your health care provider during perimenopause and menopause to discuss your specific needs and concerns.

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- pH-D Founder Deeannah Seymour