Women are talking. I’m listening. Here are 5 of the
Top 10 Questions Recently Posed to lil ole me, Dr. Angela:
Question one: How do you look at vaginas all day?
Easy; the same way you do what you do all day! Vaginas are AMAZING! Their regenerative and healing capacities alone are enough to leave one speechless. They are the canals of life, bringing forth life into the world. Besides, women have vaginas and I love women. I am so proud to be a woman and wouldn’t have it any other way. I love women’s health and am passionate about empowering, educating, and providing an avenue for women to embrace who and what they are, which is pretty much fabulous! We are a sisterhood. Besides, the world is a much better place when vaginas are happy!
Question two: What is menopause?
I find that most women don’t truly know the definition of menopause. Menopause is going a complete year without a period. That’s right, one whole year. It’s not something that you go through, either you are or you aren’t in menopause.
Question three: What is peri-menopause?
Peri-menopause is the transition to menopause. Better put, peri-menopause, on average, lasts about five years and is marked by your ovarian function starting to wax and wane. You will notice this as periods becoming more irregular (perhaps skipping months at a time, having multiple periods a month, spotting in between cycles, periods being shorter or longer; heavier or lighter than usual). You may also start to notice hot flashes, night sweats, etc.
Question four: Can I use birth control after the age of 35?
A resounding YES! In fact, unless you have something permanent in place, you should! I see it every year…a handful of women in their 40s, most recently a woman of 50, that come up pregnant all because they thought they couldn’t get pregnant due to being in peri-menopause (see above). Unless you have some medical contraindications (a situation where a drug is dangerous for a patient to use), you can safely use—and should use—contraception. For oral contraceptives like the Pill, contraindications can range from smoking, history of cardiovascular disease like hypertension/hypercholesterolemia, migraines, history of clotting disorders, uterine cancer, and breast cancer. If you have none of these, you most certainly can be on something for contraception. And remember, for those with estrogen contraindications, there are progesterone-only options as well as hormone-free options.
Question five: What can I do for my vaginal dryness?
I love this question! Mostly because most women are astounded to find out they aren’t the only ones suffering from this. First off, we have to identify the cause of the vaginal dryness. We all know there are many different causes: breastfeeding, medical treatments such as chemo/radiation, menopause, etc. I will tackle the question of vaginal atrophy, as I see this in my menopausal population a lot.
It’s important to understand the changes that occur in a menopausal vagina. You take the estrogen away, and the entire architecture of the vagina changes…you lose all the folds, natural lubrication, the tissue becomes pale, less elastic/accommodating, dry…that’s vaginal atrophy. It’s amazing what a lack of estrogen can do.
Treatment options for dealing with this include the obvious: estrogen! For those not wanting to use hormones (and there are many women who prefer something a bit more “natural”), there are over-the-counter moisturizers, probiotics, etc.
That fantabulous gal I was telling you about in my newsletter….well, she’s got some stuff that will make you realize that your vagina was “lacking” even when you didn’t realize it. Click here to check it out. Word on the street is that she’ll even give you a free sample! Tell your vajay-jays I said they are welcome. I’m sure they’ll thank me 🙂
Until Next Time,
Look Better. Feel Better. Be Better.
I’ll share the remainder of the list in next week’s blog post!
Wife, mother, Midwesterner, and award-winning OB/GYN, Dr. Angela is equal parts best girlfriend and bold professional, supporting women’s health with innovative approaches to care and heavy doses of humor. Dr. Angela has done more than launch a successful practice, she has defined herself as a voice for a new generation of womanhood, established her ASK DR. ANGELA brand committed to authenticity, and built a community rooted in trust, candor, and compassion.