Ask the Experts- September 2023

By: Red Hot Mamas

Published: September 18, 2023

Dear Red Hot Mamas,

Sex with my husband used to deliver great pleasure but now its causing more pain down there instead. When my husband makes amorous advances, I just want to run and hide. Help! Thank you.


Dear Laura,

During the menopausal years some women notice disconcerting vaginal changes in their vaginas. Because the vaginal tissues become thinner, women are more prone to vaginal and urinary infections. The vagina may itch or burn, and the tissue may sometimes bleed. Intercourse may become painful due to the decrease in lubrication.

It might be a good idea to talk to your husband to make him aware of the hormonal changes in your vagina that have occurred since you entered menopause. Perhaps you can figure out strategies for a happy sex life together.

There are many treatments to help prevent vaginal dryness after menopause. For one, regular sexual activity keeps blood circulating in your vulva and slows the drying process. So maintaining an active sex life helps to avoid the pain associated with dry vaginal tissues. Masturbation also will increase blood flow to the genital tissues. Use a lubricant during intercourse. Vaginal lubricants are used for immediate and temporary relief of discomfort associated with painful sex. Some women and their partners make lubricant application a part of foreplay.

There are also vaginal moisturizers. Moisturizers are applied several times a week and they provide long-term relief from dryness. Your clinician may also prescribe a local vaginal estrogen preparation which treats vaginal dryness. There are several FDA approved local estrogen preparations that are available.

So, there are plenty of things that can help but it is important for you to speak openly and honestly about the changes that are occurring with your husband as well as with your clinician. Start that conversation today.

Red Hot Mamas