Drying Up in Menopause
As the autumn air grows colder and my body continues to age, I find myself drier and drier these days. The air conditioner is in the off position and the heater is turned on, but that's not the only reason my body is drying up from top to bottom.
My Eyes: "Your eyes are very dry," said my ophthalmologist, Dr. V, during my last visit. "It comes with age, as do the floaters that you are experiencing in your left eye." Thankfully, my retina was not detached and my floaters are much better, but my eyes are still dry, dry, dry.
According to WebMD, dry eye is a natural part of aging, especially after menopause. (There we go, the "m" word. I knew it.) "Computer use can also contribute to dry eye. I suggest you use eye drops three times a day," said Dr. V. She recommended I buy Systane, which are artificial tears. I put a few drops in each eye—morning, noon and nighttime. Ah, I can see clearly now.
My Face: "Your face needs a good vitamin C replenishing mask," said my esthetician, as she examined my dry skin. My face was glowing after my facial, just glowing. I bought Skinceuticals Hydrating B5 Masque to use at home—can't wait to try it. I also like the new RoC Multi Correxion 5-in-1 Daily Moisturizer that I received from the Johnson & Johnson PR account executive. (Psst … I think the breakthrough Hexinol technology is breaking through my face and providing added moisture back into my skin. Such incredible technology! Now if it could quickly get rid of all my wrinkles, that would be a good thing too.)
My Hair: "My hair is very dry from the hair dryer," I said to my hairdresser. She suggested I use Moroccan oil after I wash my hair. I bought the Moroccan oil and recently tried Redken Diamond Oil as well. I usually put a few drops of oil on my fingertips and rub the oil all over my hair and scalp. Don't use too much oil or you will have bed head—flat, flat, flat.
My Vagina: "Your vagina is very dry," said my gynecologist as she examined me during my yearly checkup. WebMD says that vaginal dryness is another common symptom of menopause—and close to one out of every three women experiences it while going through "the change." It becomes even more common after menopause. (There we go again—the "m" word. I knew it.)
"You won a free bottle of new Trojan Lubricants Continuous Silkiness," said the PR representative at the BlogHer Conference. I hid it in my suitcase because I feared it might not make it through airport carry-on security—didn't want any guard shouting, "Menopausal woman here! Menopausal woman here, with lubricant in her suitcase." (No, no, no. My lubricant was going home with me and my dry vagina.)
My Legs and Feet: Dry and flaky, dry and flaky. The Perimenopause Blog says, "A little moisture goes a long way. Particularly if you're inclined, to take really hot showers. The heat extracts moisture and makes a bad case of the itches even worse."
So dear autumn, bring on the chill. I'm ready for the change of seasons. I have tons of good moisturizers to choose from. Menopause may have dried up my body, but it's far from brittle. Like the brilliant colors of the changing leaves, I plan on keeping my body (and my mind and spirit) as vibrant as ever during my life after 50.
How about you?