What Causes Vaginal Changes Such as Burning, Itching, Dryness, and Painful Sex?

After menopause, levels of estrogens decrease, causing vaginal walls to become thin and dry. This decrease in levels of estrogens may also lead to burning and itching. The body also produces less vaginal fluid, which can lead to increased irritation and discomfort as well as painful sex, known as dyspareunia.

While painful sex may seem like an embarrassing topic to bring up with your healthcare professional, it can be a bothersome symptom that many women experience during menopause. If you’re sexually active and experiencing painful sex, be sure to talk with your healthcare professional.

Although other symptoms of menopause like hot flashes will lessen over time, vaginal changes and painful sex are unlikely to get better on their own, and can even get worse for some women.

Vaginal Changes Due to Menopause

  • Dryness in and around the vagina
  • Burning in and around the vagina
  • Itching in and around the vagina
  • Pain during intercourse

The Impact

  • According to menopausal women surveyed, 97% are aware that hot flashes are a symptom of menopause
  • Less than half of menopausal women are aware that menopause can also cause vaginal symptoms
  • Also less than half are aware that painful sex can be a symptom of vaginal changes due to menopause

Discover a treatment for vaginal changes and painful sex due to menopause


Assess Your Symptoms

Record the type and severity and share the results with your healthcare professional.

Get the Menopause Symptom Assessor

Talk to Your Healthcare Professional

Bring a list of your questions to your next appointment.

Get Your Menopause Discussion Guide