Though there is some amount of moistness in a woman’s vagina at all times, this moistness typically increases during sexual intercourse or more accurately during sexual arousal. Vaginal lubricants are naturally produced by the woman’s body to facilitate ease and enjoyment of sex, since without this sex can be painful and uncomfortable.
The vaginal walls secrete moisture and the Bartholin’s glands also secrete mucus that constitutes natural vaginal lubricants. When this lubrication is absent of significantly less, vaginal dryness or a condition known as dyspareunia (sexual pain disorder) may be said to have occurred. Insufficient arousal or a number of other reasons could be the cause of inadequate production of natural vaginal lubricants.
Vaginal lubrication can naturally reduce in a number of situations
For some women there could be a decrease in lubrication during pregnancy or when they are breastfeeding. Fear or anxiety about sex could prevent arousal and result in insufficient lubrication.
One of the typical symptoms of menopause as well as certain other hormonal changes or imbalances is vaginal dryness. The aging process itself could also result in increased dryness.
At certain times in a woman’s monthly cycle, she may have less or more natural lubrication. An circumcised penis could also exacerbate vaginal dryness. Medical conditions such as hypertension could also contribute to vaginal dryness, it is thought.
Medications can also contribute to or cause insufficient production of natural vaginal lubricants. Antihistamines that reduce mucus production in the body could cause dryness. Oral contraceptive use may also decrease the lubrication for some women; however for others it may increase the lubrication.
Artificial vaginal lubricants are used to lessen the friction that could occur due to dryness and to ease sexual intercourse. They could be of several different types.
- Water based lubricants may be suitable however they tend to dry faster and they are not suitable for use if one wants to have sex in a tub, or pool and so on. These are commonly available over the counter at most drug stores.
- Silicon lubricants are also safe and easy to use, but may be less easy to find. They are thought to last longer and may not dry out as soon as water based lubricant. These are also thought to be more effective at preventing sexually transmitted disease when used along with a condom.
- Oil based lubricants are also available; however they may not be suitable for use if one is also using a condom. The oil can degrade the latex in the condom. Similarly easily available items such as petroleum jelly, which can also be as a vaginal lubricant, is also unsuitable for use along with condoms.
- Organic lubricants are also available and these are to be used as a medical rather than cosmetic device.
- There are types other than vaginal lubricants available. These are specialty lubricants that could enhance certain sensations or they may be flavored or scented. Fertility lubricants are designed for safe use even when a couple is trying to conceive. In addition there could be masturbation specific or anal specific lubricants available as well.