Vaginal Dryness

Why It’s Happening: Vaginal dryness can result from hormonal changes that occur during breast-feeding or menopause. In fact, a study of 1,000 postmenopausal women published in January 2010 in the journal Menopause found that half of postmenopausal women experience vaginal dryness. What You Can Do: Reach for an OTC lubricant before and during intercourse, such as K-Y Jelly, Aqua Lube, or Astroglide, suggests … Continue reading “Vaginal Dryness”

Why It’s Happening: Vaginal dryness can result from hormonal changes that occur during breast-feeding or menopause. In fact, a study of 1,000 postmenopausal women published in January 2010 in the journal Menopause found that half of postmenopausal women experience vaginal dryness.

What You Can Do: Reach for an OTC lubricant before and during intercourse, such as K-Y Jelly, Aqua Lube, or Astroglide, suggests Dr. Worly. Also consider vaginal moisturizers like Replens. “Both lubricants and moisturizers can be used in tandem,” says Worly. “I tell my patients to use ‘lubricants for lovemaking’ and ‘moisturizers for maintenance.’” If your body needs a little extra assistance, ask your doctor about Osphena, a non-estrogen oral pill available by prescription that helps alleviate dryness and pain attributed to menopause.

Sexual dysfunction

— which includes problems with desire, arousal, orgasm, and resolution — is common in both women and men. In fact, 43 percent of women, and 31 percent of men, report some degree of sexual dysfunction, according to the Cleveland Clinic.

And while both genders may deal with issues during intercourse, it’s often easier to pinpoint the problem in men, says Brett Worly, MD, an ob/gyn at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus. Plus, “male sexual problems have become more socially acceptable to discuss with a doctor in ways that female sexual dysfunction has not,” he notes.

The data points that trying to cover this stuff when kids have already

” formulated their own opinions and biases by the time they’re in middle and high school, it’s too late,” Cora Collette Breuner, a pediatrics professor at the University of Washington, told the Associated Press, praising the proposal for getting students to start talking about sex early on.

But not everyone feels warmly about the guidelines: “Controversial topics are best reserved for conversations between parent and child, not in the classroom,” objected Valerie Huber, executive director of the National Education Abstinence Association.

Here’s a quick glimpse at what they’ve proposed:

By the time a student graduates the second grade, she should be able to use the proper names for all body parts and explain that all living things reproduce (bye-bye, stork). By the time she leaves the fifth grade, she should be adept in how puberty prepares the body for the potential to reproduce, as well as understand how HIV is transmitted. Once she is an eighth-grade graduate, she should be able to grasp the concept of gender roles, understand the purpose of emergency contraception, and be taught about abstinence. And after the 12th grade, she should be able to correctly describe the step-by-step process of using a condom.

Currently, there are no standards,

and the average student spends a little more than 17 hours over his pre-college academic lifetime learning about sexual health (including information on preventing STDs, HIV, and pregnancy), according to a study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Division of Adolescent School Health — about 3 of those hours take place in elementary school, about 6 occur in middle school, and about 8 happen in high school.

And that’s not enough, says the coalition, who also believes we need to address the inconsistency of such sensitive topics in schools across the nation. So to determine what is enough, the group tapped about 40 leaders in public health, sex education, and public policy to come up with set guidelines for topics such as anatomy, puberty, identity, STDs, HIV, personal safety, and healthy relationships.

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