When estrogen declines, and Vaginal Atrophy sets in, the normal vaginal pH changes and becomes LESS acidic. This affects the entire vaginal MICROBIOME, and reduces the concentration of the beneficial flora that live inside a healthy Vagina - specifically Lactobacilli.
When the microbiome is altered like this, growth of organisms that cause vaginal infections, unusual odors, and vaginal discharge can occur.
In time, Vaginal Atrophy results in Drying up the URETHRA (the tube we urinate from) AND ends up causing Urethral ATROPHY as well! This becomes very serious as woman age.
As a Vagina gets dry, it SHORTENS and retracts upward and inward. THEN at that point the Urethra starts retracting, too - getting closer to the Vaginal opening. This puts the Urethra even closer to the Anus... which is a primary identified source of contributing E-coli, causing many Urinary Tract Infections.
This sets a woman with Vaginal Atrophy up for serious Urinary Tract Infections, and she may not even know it!
I can't even count the number of female patients I have cared for who suffered from a serious SEPTIC episode stemming from a Urinary Tract Infection. In fact, 25% of all cases of Sepsis are caused by Urinary Tract Infections.
Despite the high number of women experiencing problems related to vaginal dryness only a quarter of women with these problems actually seek treatment. It is still a "SILENT PROBLEM" that many people feel embarrassed to talk about to partners, friends and even their doctors.
Women spend a third of their lives in a post menopausal state and they need to make sure they maintain the QUALITY OF LIFE that they had before the menopause. Vaginal dryness does not need to be treated as an inevitable part of growing older – something can be done about it.