Picture this scenario.
It’s one of those restful nights, 6 weeks after delivery, and there he goes; Tap tap tap! Can we have some couple’s time, please?
Well, that is your partner demanding his conjugal rights.
What will be your response?
Flee, hide or give in?
I have been a member of many pregnancies and nursing forums for a while. And the number one question new moms tend to ask is, “how long should I wait before becoming sexually active after delivery?
The answer is usually simple, as soon as you feel ready. However, the discussion that followers afterward is always mind-boggling.
Most of the time, you’ll notice that some women don’t feel ready even after the first three months of pregnancy and childbirth.
And you just can’t blame them.
So why do life tend to change after pregnancy and childbirth?
Pregnancy and breastfeeding can cause significant fluctuations in hormonal balance. With hormonal imbalance, many factors in a woman’s body may change.
Talk of weight gain, bleeding, vaginal dryness, and of course, low libido, just to mention a few.
In fact, during pregnancy and after childbirth, when you’re actively breastfeeding, you may experience vaginal dryness due to low estrogen.
The result of low estrogen can be low libido, uncomfortable or painful sex experience, and sometimes you may get light bleeding.
In this post, I will dwell on how to treat vaginal dryness during pregnancy and after childbirth. Please read on and do not hesitate to give me your thoughts in the comments.
What Increases Wetness In a Woman?
Reproductive hormonal balance is the primary driver of vaginal lubrication in women. Higher estrogen levels can enhance vaginal wetness by stimulating the Bartholin glands to produce more fluid.
Consequently, a drop in estrogen may lead to vaginal dryness. Sometimes, women on hormone treatments may notice an increase in vaginal wetness if a considerable amount of estrogen is administered.
How Do You Know When Suffering From Vaginal Dryness?
Vaginal dryness occurs when your body can not natural moist your vulva for whatever reasons. You may lack natural lubrication in your vagina, and some of the prominent symptoms will include;
- Inability to maintain natural lubrication during intercourse
- Experiencing a burning, discomfort, or an itchy vagina
- Painful urination due to irritation in your vulva
- Some light spotting during or after intercourse
If you’re experiencing any of these postpartum symptoms, it may be that your natural lubrication has decreased as a result of hormonal changes during pregnancy.
What Causes Postpartum Vaginal Dryness?
- A drop in estrogen
- Postpartum thyroiditis
- Breastfeeding after giving birth
- Some birth control pills
- Being on certain medications like chemotherapy
Related: Here is Mommy Friendly Tips for Safer Sex After Childbirth
How Can You Increase Your Natural Lubrication?
There are several vaginal dryness natural remedies you may use after birth. Starting with your everyday diet to adding a little use of moisturizers, you may have a wide range of choices to ease vaginal dryness and irritation. Here are my picks;
1. Eat Lots of Okra
Okra has been known for its slimy properties for ages, making many people repulse it when served. But do you know this sliminess might be what you just need if you’re experiencing vaginal dryness?
Known as the “lady’s finger,” in some parts of the world, many women swear that Okra can improve lubrication in vaginal walls, thus making bedroom matters enjoyable even after childbirth.
Besides its mucilage properties, which are thought to increase lubrication, Okra is also an excellent source of nutrients.
It consists of folate, magnesium, vitaminB6, vitamin C, and vitamin K, making it perfect for pregnant and nursing mothers.
Similarly, it contains antioxidants like polyphenols that help your overall health and may boost body relaxation.
How to prepare and consume Okra for lubrication
- Chop a few pods and drop them in a glass of warm water
- Let the mixture stay overnight
- You may warm your overnight drink on low heat before drinking in the morning.
- Also, you may add some honey to the slimy water for taste.
Alternatively, you may include it in your juices or smoothies.
2. Use Pure Organic Coconut Oil
One study suggests that pure coconut oil is clinically safe and can be effectively used as a natural moisturizer.
These moisturizing properties make virgin coconut oil effective as a temporary lubricant when you experience vaginal dryness during pregnancy or after childbirth.
Using pure coconut oil may enhance your vulva lubrication, especially when your partner is too demanding after childbirth.
Additionally, this oil contains antifungal and antibacterial properties that may enhance your yoni healing if you have some tears during birth.
Massage a considerable amount of coconut oil in your hands and gently apply it to your vulva before making love.
Organic coconut oil can sooth your vaginal walls, strengthen the inner skin barrier and promote hydration. It’s an excellent lubricant and may enhance your comfort during intercourse.
Please note that when applying coconut oil, be sure to take greek yogurt or use a probiotic for pH balancing in your vagina.
3. Apple Fruits and Avocado Smoothies
According to research, consuming apples may significantly improve your vaginal health. Compounds like phytoestrogen phloridzin, polyphenols, and antioxidants in apples may help promote better sexual function, including arousal, lubrication, and orgasm.
Why don’t you commit to eating an apple daily? It may help enhance a little desire for your man. Also, you may think of blending one into your breastfeeding smoothies to enhance your daily dose.
Additionally, do not forget to bite your avocado fruit. I swear, it is excellent for your lactation needs and can enhance your sexual life by strengthening and lubricating your vaginal walls.
4. Slippery Elm
Slippery elm is a natural remedy that has stood the test of time when it comes to healing wounds, fevers, sore throats, and of course, vaginal lubrication.
It’s a herb derived from the roots and bark of the Ulmus rubra tree. And just like Okra, slippery elm consists of numerous mucilage, which gives it a slippery nature making it effective for ointment, salve, and lubrication.
When consumed, this herb can help heal the internal mucosal tissues like the digestive tract, esophagus, and vaginal walls.
You may take your slippery elm by mixing the powder with water in a glass and consuming it. Alternatively, you may take it as a tablet, supplement, or fine powder for making teas and smoothy additives.
Put 1 tablespoon of the powder elm into 1 medium-sized cup of hot water, then steep for a few minutes.
As with any supplement, please go through the product labels or consult your professional health provider on the quantity before trying to avoid overdose or underdose.
5. Seeds and Beans
Seeds are excellent when it comes to hormonal balancing. Since vaginal dryness may occur due to low estrogen, it’s essential to incorporate foods that can boost its production.
Also, seeds contain essential fatty acids that enhance blood circulation for incredible libido. Here are my top picks
Flax seeds or Oil
Flax seeds contain a considerably high amount of phytoestrogens. Their primary phytoestrogens are called lignans. Lignans are beneficial in estrogen metabolism and can enhance your estrogen level after delivery.
Sesame seeds are also an excellent dietary source of phytoestrogens. In a study that used rats to establish the effectiveness of these seeds on estrogen metabolism, the researchers concluded that sesame seeds, when used together with soybeans, can significantly improve the level of estrogen after a considerable timeframe, like two months. So, being patient is the key to reaping the benefits.
These are another excellent source of phytoestrogens. Phytoestrogens mimic estrogen in the body by binding to estrogen receptors and can have estrogenic or anti-estrogenic effects depending on the levels in the body. If you’re experiencing vaginal dryness due to low estrogen, then, it’s time to introduce these beans into your diet.
Seed Cycling: This is All You Need to Know about Seed Cycling for Hormonal Balance and Menstrual Cramps
6. Honey and Garlic
Garlic is widely known for its health benefits, especially in women’s reproductive.
According to studies, garlic consists of allicin, a compound that can increase blood flow to sexual organs. Some women state that consuming garlic and honey can enhance your vaginal lubrication and improve your libido after childbirth.
You may take a daily dose of 1 teaspoon fresh crushed garlic mixed with a tablespoon of honey.
Frequently consuming this mixture for about two weeks can help you get your love-making story back to where it was before childbirth.
7. Drinking a Lot of Water
Studies show that about 90% of a woman’s cervical mucus consists of water. And as such, your yoni needs a lot of water for moisturization.
Please, in addition to other remedies, always ensure that you remain hydrated throughout the day. Good hydration will not only improve your general wellbeing but is a licensee to increased breast milk and vaginal lubrication after birth.
Try Drinking up to 8 – 10 glasses of water in a day. You may start by using a measuring bottle to guide your consumption rate. When your body gets used to it, you can drink it naturally.
8. Sea Buckthorn Oil
As a natural supplement, sea buckthorn oil derived from leaves and seeds of the same plant has some benefits when relieving vaginal dryness.
One study on the effects of sea buckthorn oil on postmenopausal women experiencing vaginal dryness suggests that this oil had a beneficial effect on vaginal dryness.
The study showed that sea buckthorn oil was an effective alternative for mucosal integrity, especially for women who react to estrogen treatment.
Additionally, this oil is loaded with essential fatty acids like linolic acid. The fatty acids play a crucial role in strengthening the skin barrier, thus preventing water loss.
Try consuming 3 grams of sea buckthorn oil for about 3 three months for improved vaginal tissue integrity.
9. Use Vitamin E Suppositories
Much research has shown that vitamin E can enhance lubrication and reduce vaginal dryness. Please try consuming foods rich in vitamin E like almonds, avocados, and nuts.
Additionally, you may use vitamin E suppositories to help stimulate the vaginal mucosa. Doing so will increase your lubrication and prevent some infections after delivery.
10. Water-Based Lubricants and Moisturizers
Using lubricants may be another option that offers a short-term solution for vaginal dryness.
Before loving making, you may apply a water-based lubricant to your yoni. This will help reduce friction and relieve any pain or discomfort during intercourse.
Also, you may ease vaginal dryness by applying a moisturizer. Be sure to choose moisturizers specifically designed for this sensitive area.
Apply your moisturizer around the vaginal wall about two to three days a week. In case of irritation, stop and seek professional advice.
11. Declutter Your Mind and Rest Your Body
Sometimes vaginal dryness and low libido after childbirth may result from motherhood trauma due to struggles in pregnancy, childbirth, and life afterward.
Pregnancy and childbirth are not a joke. It may create short-term negative psychology on your bedroom matters. Also, your body undergoes several changes; it may take a while before returning to its prepregnancy state.
Try to pre-empty your mind by practicing your most preferred relaxation technique like yoga, evening walks, storytelling, or journaling.
This may help you put aside a little bit of motherhood chronicles and refocus on your body needs.
Also, get help where possible to avoid tiring yourself with too many chores since you may not perform well in bedroom matters if you’re too tired.
12. Engage More in Foreplay
Before getting into the love-making process, ensure that you’re in the right standing with your spouse.
In case of any issues, you must learn to communicate and forgive if you want to enjoy your newly acquired motherhood state and responsibility.
Having foreplay before intercourse helps to increase blood flow and vaginal secretions, thus relieving you of dryness. If your mind is at peace with more foreplay, you should at least get aroused and enjoy this game.
Related: 10 Common Health Issues You May Experience in Your First 6 Weeks After Childbirth
13. Low–dose Estrogen Therapy
Since health professionals site low estrogen as the leading cause of vaginal dryness after childbirth, going for estrogen therapy can be another long-term option.
Studies suggest that estrogen therapy is a safe and effective treatment for vaginal dryness.
After consultation, your doctor may prescribe a low-dose vaginal estrogen therapy like vaginal creams, vaginal rings, and vaginal tablets. This therapy release a small dose of estrogen into the vaginal tissue.
In return, it helps to restore the natural thickness, wetness, and elasticity of the vaginal lining, thus relieving dryness. Here are a few benefits of estrogen therapy;
- Increased lubrication
- Decreased discomfort during sex
- Reduced risk of yeast infections
- Less incidence of bacterial vaginitis
Worthy to note, however, is systemic estrogen therapy may have some potential side effects. This may include;
- Vaginal bleeding
- breast tenderness
- stomach pain and digestion issues
Although vaginal dryness can affect women at any stage of life, it’s more prominent during menopause, pregnancy, childbirth, and breastfeeding.
However, studies suggest that taking vitamin E supplements and other vaginal dryness natural remedies can significantly improve your lubrication even as you wait for your reproductive hormones to balance.
Be sure to consult your doctor if you want to incorporate any supplements into your diet, especially if you have underlying health conditions. Some supplements may interfere with breastmilk or any medication that you may be taking.
UP NEXT: 7 Powerful Natural Remedies to Get Rid of Your Vaginal Yeast In Just 3 Days
DISCLAIMER The information contained in this post is for general information purposes only. I’m not a health practitioner and as such, this information should not be used as a substitute for consultation with your professional service provider.