Menopause is a natural biological process that brings with it physical changes and symptoms that can be uncomfortable. However, this is not an excuse to stop enjoying your sexual health (Mayo Clinic, 2021).
One of the main characteristics of menopause is hormonal changes, which are responsible for the physical symptoms of menopause (MedlinePlus, 2019). For example, during menopause, the body begins to produce less oestrogen and progesterone. This causes the membrane lining the inside of the uterus to not thicken and menstruation does not occur (FDA, 2018).
Some of the symptoms of decreased oestrogen and progesterone, hormones that regulate the menstrual cycle, are as follows (Fairview, n.d.):
- Vaginal dryness, which may cause discomfort or pain during sexual intercourse.
- Hot flushes, night sweats and joint pain.
- Mood swings and insomnia.
But don’t worry, it’s still possible to enjoy your sexual life, have fun in your relationships and reach female orgasm without major problems. Keep reading, we’ll tell you what to do.
5 tips to enjoy your sexual health
1. Improve your lifestyle
The first thing you should do to improve your sex life is to adopt healthy lifestyle habits. Being physically active, getting enough sleep, eating a balanced diet and avoiding alcohol and tobacco will increase your sense of well-being. This will help raise your self-esteem, positively improving the quality of your sex life (NIA, n.d.).
In terms of diet, include more food containing calcium, vitamin D and soy, which is rich in oestrogen (MedlinePlus, 2019).
2. Maintaining good intimate hygiene
To maintain good sexual health, it is also important to have proper intimate hygiene as well as adequate hydration. This will help reduce irritation, inflammation, discomfort and pain during sexual intercourse (Bonet & Garrote, 2017).
3. Exercise your pelvis
Kegel exercises are one of the best ways to maintain your intimate health and stimulate sexual desire. These pelvic floor exercises can help get more blood to the vagina and strengthen the muscles involved in orgasm. They can also help prevent urine leakage, which is common at this stage (Migala, 2020; OAHS, 2018).
4. Use lubricants
Using moisturisers and lubricants during sexual intercourse can help improve dryness and enjoyment of sex. Do not use lubricants that are not water-soluble, as they can weaken latex. In addition, these lubricants can cause bacterial infections (Sagon, n.d.; Laughlin-Tommaso, 2021).
5. Talk to your partner
Talking to your partner is one of the most important things you can do. Don’t be shy about telling your partner about your changing needs or desires. You can also consult your doctor for more information. Remember that many of the symptoms of menopause can be easily treated (NAMS, n.d.).
Menopause is no excuse to stop enjoying your sexual health
Menopause is not a negative stage and should not be seen as such. It is a natural period that brings with it changes in the body. You must identify these changes and treat them so that you can continue to enjoy your sexual health as in other stages of your life.
Bonet, R., & Garrote, A. (2017). Menopausia. Farmacia Profesional, 31(6), 15-17. https://www.elsevier.es/es-revista-farmacia-profesional-3-articulo-menopausia-X0213932417620576
Fairview. (n.d.). Cambios hormonales durante la menopausia. https://www.fairview.org/patient-education/84990
Laughlin-Tommaso, S. (2021). Sequedad vaginal después de la menopausia: ¿Cómo tratarla? Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/es-es/diseases-conditions/menopause/expert-answers/vaginal-dryness/faq-20115086
Mayo Clinic. (2021). Menopausia. https://www.mayoclinic.org/es-es/diseases-conditions/menopause/symptoms-causes/syc-20353397
MedlinePlus. (2019). Menopausia. https://medlineplus.gov/spanish/ency/article/000894
Migala, J. (2020). Here’s why you should be doing kegels after menopause. Everyday Health. https://www.everydayhealth.com/menopause/kegels-for-menopause-benefits
National Institute on Aging [NIA]. (n.d.). La menopausia: consejos para una transición saludable. https://www.nia.nih.gov/espanol/infografia/menopausia-consejos-transicion-saludable
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health [OAHS]. (2018). Menopausia y sexualidad. https://espanol.womenshealth.gov/menopause/menopause-and-sexuality
Sagon, C. (n.d.). El problema ocasionado por la menopausia que las mujeres no suelen mencionar. AARP. https://www.aarp.org/espanol/salud/vida-saludable/info-06-2013/dolor-relaciones-sexuales-resequedad-vaginal.html
The North American Menopause Society [NAMS]. (n.d.). How to increase your sexual desire during menopause. https://www.menopause.org/for-women/menopauseflashes/sexual-health/how-to-increase-your-sexual-desire-during-menopause
U.S. Food & Drug Administration [FDA]. (2018). La menopausia y las hormonas: Preguntas más frecuentes. https://www.fda.gov/consumers/free-publications-women/la-menopausia-y-las-hormonas-preguntas-mas-frecuentes